India — The Maharashtra government formed a four-member committee to probe an incident in which girls were allegedly forced to strip and dance by policemen at a hostel in Jalgaon, state home minister Anil Deshmukh said on Wednesday.
Deshmukh made the announcement during a debate on the issue during zero hour in the Assembly, when Bharatiya Janata Party leader Sudhir Mungantiwar attacked the government for the alleged failure of law and order situation.
According to media reports, some girls from Ashadeep hostel in Jalgaon complained that people from outside and policemen were allowed to enter the facility on the pretext of a probe and some girls were forced to strip and dance. The incident took place on February 2.
Raising the issue in the assembly, BJP MLA from Chikhali, Buldhana, Shweta Mahale said that a video of the incident has also surfaced.
Deshmukh replied that a team comprising a psychiatrist and a woman police officer has been constituted, assuring action within two days. “It is a very unfortunate incident. A four-member high-level committee of officials has been formed to conduct a probe into it,” he said.
“We have been collating the information and the available documentary evidence including video clips. Statements are being recorded. Strict action would be taken against those found guilty after the report is submitted in next two days,” he said.
Social workers in the area have filed a complaint with the district collector, Abhijit Raut who formed the four member team. No police complaint has been filed as yet.
Mungantiwar accused the state government of not taking the issue seriously. The case is an example of the failed state of law and order, he said, adding that the BJP would seek imposition of President’s rule. “If such type of serious case which proves that our sisters and mothers are not safe… are not taken seriously by the government, it is evident that the law and order here has failed… Take immediate action and suspend policemen involved,” he said.
“Our expectation is that you take immediate action sensitively,” the leader of opposition, Devendra Fadnavis said supporting Mungantiwar’s demand for president’s rule.
Reacting to the BJP leaders, minority welfare minister and NCP leader Nawab Malik demanded their statements be expunged. “This is a direct threat to the government. Ours is an elected government with full majority,” Malik said. Deputy speaker Narhari Zirwal said, “I will take a call on expunging the proceeding after examining it.”