Truck drivers deny ‘seeing women dragged to fields’ in Murthal | punjab | Hindustan Times
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Truck drivers deny ‘seeing women dragged to fields’ in Murthal

Three “witnesses” of violence during the 10-day Jat agitation in Haryana have denied seeing rioters rape or sexually assault women, police officers who questioned them have said. A senior police officer told HT on the condition of anonymity that truck drivers Niranjan Singh, Yadavender Singh and Sukhvinder Singh were questioned in front of a judicial magistrate on Sunday.

punjab Updated: Feb 28, 2016 16:31 IST
HT Correspondents
murthal gangrape

At least 30 people were killed and property worth crores was destroyed in the 10-day Jat agitation over reservation in government jobs and education in Haryana. (HT Photo)

Three people who claimed they saw a mob of Jat protesters drag women with torn clothes into fields along the national highway 1 in Haryana refused to confirm any rape or assault, police said on Sunday.

They said the drivers told them they saw only vehicles being torched.

A senior police officer told HT truck drivers Niranjan Singh, Yadavender Singh and Sukhvinder Singh questioned in front of a judicial magistrate.

“They refused to admit that they had witnessed any rape or molestation incident during the riots on February 22,” the officer said.

“So far there is no evidence to prove the allegations of rape and molestation on GT Road,” he added.

The Haryana government is probing media reports saying vehicles were reportedly stopped on National Highway-1 near Murthal in Sonepat district during the Jat quota protests, and women dragged out and raped.

TV news channels beamed footage of “witnesses” coming out to speak on the alleged rapes, saying women were seen being pushed into the fields.

Sonepat superintendent of police Abhishek Garg said there was still no complaint filed by any of the “victims” or any evidence to prove that any woman was actually raped.

Head of the all-women special investigation team formed to probe the allegations, deputy inspector general of police Rajshree Singh, said: “The SIT has already recorded the statement of the alleged witnesses, including Niranjan Singh, but I don’t know what he has said, as I am travelling to Delhi.”

Vij asks DGP to file case on basis of witness account

Meanwhile, Haryana health minister Anil Vij said his party, the BJP, wanted action against the guilty, irrespective of their caste.

“BJP mein jaat, non jaat nahin, dangaiyon pe karvahi chahte hain hum (In BJP we want action against the rioters, irrespective of their being jats or non-jats),” he tweeted.

Vij said he had asked director general of police YP Singal to register a case in the “reported rape of several women”.

Vij told HT that he had learnt that some truck drivers, who had been stranded on the highway during the violence, claimed to have had seen some women being taken into fields by some men and their clothes being torn.

“Singal has sent a team to Punjab to record the statements of those drivers,’’ Vij said.

Read more: QUOTA QUAKE: Tales of death and destruction from Haryana’s Jat stir