Bengaluru, Jan 2: Bengaluru witnessed a horrific night on New Year’s Eve when women were molested by goons on bikes during celebrations at MG Road and Brigade Road in the city. Most famous M G road and Brigade Road are Bengaluru’s most bustling areas that saw thousands of men mobbing the revellers and groping women on streets in police presence. As per reports, women were quoted saying that they were severely molested. The grisly image of the incident was made available in the form of camera footages. It looks as if the police underestimated the nature of the mob during the New Year’s celebration.

What exactly happened?

People gathered in the heart of the Bangalore city at MG Road and Brigade Road to welcome 2017. People on bikes, cars and on foot, converged in the IT hub for the New Years revellery. It was then when molesters mobbed the revellers and groped women on streets. The hooligans in the garb of revellers started pawing and passing lewd remarks on women on the streets. Reports also state that the alleged molesters forced many women to take off their shoes and run for help to the nearest policeman.

Outnumbered cops:

What allowed hooligans to maul women who came to celebrate New Year with impunity were the outnumbered cops in that area? When the molestation took place, several constables reportedly watched helplessly as they realised that they were outnumbered. In wake of the matter, Karnataka DGP Om Prakash said since such reports have come, will identify culprits and take action.

Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara’s crass comment

Meanwhile, Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara said shocked everyone with his crass comment. He said, “Such incidents do happen on New Year day and on Christmas. We take a lot of precautions.” The Home Minister said that there were enough policemen to ensure the safety of women. “It’s unfortunate, had installed more than 25 CCTVs, will examine”, he added.

Despite previous incidences, it looks like women’s safety is still a very low priority for politicians and governments in states. Reports state that more than 15000 police officials were on duty on streets and yet they failed to stop the goons.

Statements by Eye-witnesses to NDTV:

Eye-witnesses told NDTV about the deadly incident and expressed anguish over such deadly happenings. “You can fight 1 or 2, but how can you fight a crowd”, a person was quoted saying. Another person said, “Saw a person crying, shouting and was bleeding and had scratches”.  Another eye-witness reported saying, “I saw the horror unfold as my friend was molested. “It is very disturbing to see women caught in such helpless situation,” the person added.

No cases filed

Despite evidences and statements by eye-witness, the Bangalore city police officially claimed that they have not registered a single case of molestation or harassment.

Nagendra Kumar, deputy commissioner of police, Command Centre, Bengaluru, told Bangalore Mirror that even the city control room did not receive any such distress calls and most of the calls received during New Year celebrations on Saturday night were either regular enquiry calls or for traffic assistance.  “We got around 450 calls at the city control room when on Saturday night, especially after 10 pm till wee hours in the morning, and not even one was about women being assaulted or molested,” he said.

Expressing grief over the mass molestation, women activist Brinda Adige on Monday said it is extremely shameful that such incidents take place every year. While speaking to ANI, Adige questioned the mindset of men and said, “These men, who are drunk and unashamed, continue to assault women. They also know that action on them will not be taken immediately”.