A woman in her early 20s was beaten up and partially stripped by half-a-dozen men on a busy street in Patna on Thursday evening.
Despite the incident occurring close to the Gandhi Maidan police station, the police took half an hour to arrive, and spent an hour merely witnessing the spectacle. The woman and the young men were finally taken to the police station.
Police said the woman told them she had been lured from her home by one of the men, Rakesh, who was forcing her to have sex with customers. When she ran away they chased her.
Additional director general of Police Neelamani claimed the woman was already in the flesh trade. He said the assault followed a disagreement over money.
Patna: The city witnessed a horror show on Thursday when half-a-dozen young men beat up a woman in her 20s and then virtually stripped her in full public view on one of the city’s busiest roads near Gandhi Maidan in central Patna.
The humiliation lasted close to two hours.
It was 5.30 pm when the Apsara Cinema hall was disgorging its afternoon show viewers. The crowd kept swelling by the minute and each one watched.
The Big Shame: Not a single man in the entire crowd dared intervene. This, despite the fact that the Gandhi Maidan police station is a stone’s throw from the spot and there were hundreds of mobiles with the crowd which could have served to summon the police.
The Second Big Shame: The police, arrived half an hour later, watched the ‘show’ for another hour before taking the culprits to the police station.
The woman told the police that she had been lured to Patna by a man called Rakesh (only name known at the time of going to press), a resident of Muzaffarpur, with the promise of a job.
He took her to a hotel here and invited some friends over. They then tried to rape her, she said. She ran away from the hotel but the men caught her on the street and started beating her up.
The situation turned ugly when Rakesh and his friend started stripping her. They claimed that she was a sex worker and had tried to entice them.
However, Geeta (name changed) snatched Rakesh’s mobile, which she told the crowd had the numbers he contacted before bringing her from Jasidih in Jharkhand to Patna.
Hearing her version, a group in the crowd beat up Rakesh.
“Preliminary investigations have suggested that Rakesh has close links with the flesh trade,” said IG (Patna Zone) Sunil Kumar.