In an audicious act that has exposed the security of women living in hostels, a couple of youths allegedly barged into the nurses' hostel at Vidya Sagar Institute of Mental Health (VSIMH) in the wee hours of Friday, molested a girl and fled, hostellers alleged.
The incident created turmoil on the hospital premises and led to a massive protest by the students.
Amritsar city police officials reached the spot and conducted an identification parade by summoning all youths putting up on the campus, including the sons of the institute staff.
During the identification parade, some of the trainees identified a youth, who was immediately detained by police. Subsequently, police also detained the other youth as the first accused disclosed his name, a police official.
Police have booked the accused at the Civil Lines police station under Sections 452 (house trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint) and 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), following a complaint by the institute’s director Dr BL Goel.
However, police action was not enough to pacify the agitated students, who demanded that the accused be handed over to them. Angered at the incident, the students also vandalised and overturned Dr Goel’s car.
The protesters alleged that the incident took place at around 4am and claimed that it was not the first incident of trespassing.
The nursing trainees said such incidents had occurred in the past as well, but that the hospital authorities “remained ignorant”.
According to hospital sources, Vidya Sagar Institute of Mental Health being the only institute of mental health in the region, has tie ups with various nursing institutes of Punjab and neighbouring states — such as Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir — that send their students for training on handling patients with various mental ailments.
The sources added that the alleged victim was also from some other institute and had come here for training.
Additional deputy commissioner of police (ADCP, investigation) JS Walia, who also visited the spot, said a case was registered in this connection and the charges levelled against the accused were being verified.
The case was being duly investigated, he added. Police, however, refused to disclose the identity of the accused, stating that they would first verify the charges against them.