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HindustanTimes Sun,26 Oct 2014

Protest seeking justice for rape victim turns violent

Parampreet Singh Narula, Hindustan Times  letterschd@hindustantimes.com Phagwara, August 16, 2014
First Published: 22:19 IST(16/8/2014) | Last Updated: 22:21 IST(16/8/2014)

A protest organised for seeking justice for a rape victim by Shri Guru Ravidass Sena, Punjab, along with the family of the victim, turned violent when the police allegedly cane charged them.

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Around 200 protesters were to hold a rally from the grain market to Sugar Mill Chowk against the alleged inaction of the police in arresting the accused.

When the protesters tried to organise the rally from the grain market, the police allegedly cane charged them and also detained 25 protesters, including women.

The members demanded justice for the 22-year-old woman of Ranipur village of Kapurthala, who was raped by Mandeep Singh, Kuldeep Singh and Surjit Singh on July 29. The victim worked at a cloth factory near Kherha Road, Phagwara, for the past nine months.

Even after 18 days, the police have failed to make any arrests.

Shri Guru Ravidass Sena, Punjab, president Dilbar Singh, who was leading the protest, alleged that they were to hold a peaceful rally against the inaction of the police who had failed to arrest the accused even after identifying them, but the police cane charged them.

"The police that did not make any effort to arrest the accused, detained our members and also cane charged us in which two people suffered minor injuries," he said.

Dilbar said that later Phagwara SP Gursevak Singh Brar apologised for the police force and agreed to release those detained. He also assured them to arrest the accused soon, Dilbar said.

The Phagwara SP, when contacted, refuted the cane-charge allegations, saying, "It was not a cane charge; the police just tried to scatter the violent crowd and nobody suffered any injury."

On the police failure in arresting the rape accused, Brar said the police had repeatedly raided the houses of the accused, but no avail.

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