THE CITIZEN BUREAU | 2 AUGUST, 2019
‘If I Complain About Someone And I Have An Accident, What Then’ -Schoolgirl to UP Cop’
NEW DELHI: The Unnao rape victim’s fight for justice has been strengthened by civil society, as public protests, petitions and twitter hashtags all come together to condemn the attack on the 19 year old, after a truck with a blackened out number plate rammed into her car, killing two of her aunts and critically injuring her and her lawyer.
Since then, the Supreme Court has stepped in to provide interim compensation of Rs 25 lakh, and has transferred four cases relating to the rape victim to Delhi. The CBI has booked BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar and 10 others of murder charges.
Civil society at large have equated the attack to a travesty of justice; ever since the young girl (she was 17 at the time) accused powerful BJP MLA Sengar, she - along with her family - has faced violence and intimidation. The victim’s father was thrashed to death in police custody, a key witness died under mysterious circumstances, her uncle was convicted in a 19 year old case and sent to prison (the case was filed by Sengar’s brother, Atul Singh), and now, the survivor and her lawyer were critically injured in a car crash, which killed two of her aunts.
The young girl’s fight has rightly been called a travesty of justice, as the system has closed in to protect the powerful. The most poignant reflection of this is perhaps in a viral video - of a Barabanki schoolgirl asking a team of cops whether she too would meet the same fate?
The Uttar Pradesh police officials were in the school to deliver a lecture on women’s safety, when a very brave young girl got up and asked them about what they will do to guarantee the safety of those who complain against "influential" persons. The question was met with a round of applause.
“If the person against whom we are complaining comes to know about it, and if we have an accident, what will happen?”
“Will I get justice on registering a protest? Because in Unnao an MLA had outraged the modesty of a girl, and when she was fighting the legal battle, she had an accident. She is now battling for her life,” she said.
The officer’s response. “All complainants to toll-free number would be provided help.”
On Thursday, Kuldeep Singh Sengar was expelled from both the state and central unit of the BJP.