Transgender woman molested, told to ‘prove gender’ before filing FIR
The complainant, who shared her experience on social media, was travelling from Navi Mumbai and got off at Dadar station to board a Goregaon-bound train at 10.30pm.Updated: Oct 13, 2019 07:46 IST
The government railway police (GRP) at Mumbai Central in the early hours of Saturday arrested a 50-year-old Virar resident for allegedly molesting a transgender woman at Dadar station on Friday night. The complainant said that the police made her produce a gender certificate before registering a first information report (FIR) under section 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
The complainant, who shared her experience on social media, was travelling from Navi Mumbai and got off at Dadar station to board a Goregaon-bound train at 10.30pm. At the station, she was touched inappropriately by the accused, Prakash Devendra Bhatt.
She raised an alarm and dragged him to the GRP to file a complaint. She said that while the police wanted to help, they did not immediately register a complaint as the section concerned refers to women.
They even called in women police officers to get a medical examination. “I told them that I was not injured and a medical examination was not required. After a little explaining, they wanted proof that I was entitled to register a molestation complaint to present in court,” said the complainant.
The complainant then produced a gender certificate, two hours after which the police registered the FIR. “We have arrested Bhatt under the relevant section. We will produce him before the court,” said Shailendra Dhivar, senior police inspector of Mumbai Central GRP.
The complainant said that she now wants to conduct gender sensitivity sessions for the city’s police force.