Two women sustained injuries after jumping off an autorickshaw, after the driver started making obscene gestures at them on Sunday night. They were travelling from Malhar to Kapurbawadi.
Following investigations, Phoolchand Gupta, 43, an auto driver was arrested from his residence in Dhokali, Manpada, by the Naupada police. He was identified with the help of a sketch that the women helped the police prepare. The auto was also seized.
According to the police, the two women, aged 22 and 17, are residents of Ratnagiri. They had come to attend a seminar in Kalwa. They were living with an acquaintance, M Kanniya, near Malhar talkies in Naupada. After attending the seminar on Sunday, they decided to visit an uncle in Bhiwandi. Kanniya helped them board an auto around 8.30pm.
“After boarding the rickshaw, the two women noticed that the driver was making vulgar gestures at the rear view mirror, so they could see him. He also kept adjusting the mirror so he could leer at them.
On the Cadbury flyover, the driver sped up, ignoring the women’s protests. The two then decided to make a jump to safety. The 22-year-old woman leapt off the left side. The shocked driver slowed down, allowing the teenager to jump off.
“After the girls jumped off, a woman took them to Jupiter hospital, where the staff informed the police. Both suffered minor injuries on their faces and hands. They were treated and discharged on Monday morning.
“The girls helped us prepare a sketch of the accused” said VD Chandanshive, DCP, Wagle Estate Division, Zone 5.
A case has been registered against Gupta under sections 354 (A), 509 and 366 of the IPC and section 12 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act. “The man denies having harassed the women, but admitted that he was the driver who was taking the two women from Malhar,” said a police officer from Naupada police station.