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Home > Mumbai > Mumbai News > Article > Sakinaka harassment HC pulls up cops

Sakinaka harassment: HC pulls up cops

Updated on: 05 March,2024 06:55 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Apoorva Agashe | mailbag@mid-day.com

Directs Sakinaka police to ensure girl students feel safe; file detailed affidavit in three weeks

Sakinaka harassment: HC pulls up cops

Three of the minor boys outside the school compound. File pic

Key Highlights

  1. Bombay High Court pulled up the Mumbai police
  2. The girls’ families had approached the HC after the police failed to act
  3. The HC has asked the Sakinaka police to ensure safety of the schoolgirls

The Bombay High Court (HC) pulled up the Mumbai police on Monday for being lax in safeguarding minor girls who were being harassed in the Sakinaka area by underage boys of the same locality. The girls’ families had approached the HC after the police—which boasts of the ‘Nirbhaya Squad’ formed specifically to safeguard women in the city—failed to act against the harassers.


Now, the HC has asked the Sakinaka police to ensure safety of the schoolgirls and enhance patrolling in the area. Additionally, the cops have been instructed to file a detailed affidavit in three weeks about the course of the investigation.  The matter was taken to court after the girls’ families approached it to register an FIR against a group of minor boys who had allegedly thrown eggs on a group of minor girls when they left their school premises on January 19 and the cops failed to take action.


One of the harassers passes by as the girls walk to school; the girls’ parents have confronted the harassers to no avail
One of the harassers passes by as the girls walk to school; the girls’ parents have confronted the harassers to no avail


“The HC has told the Sakinaka police to ensure safety of the girls in and out of the school premises, with enhanced police patrolling in the area. The court also directed the police to counsel the boys and said that such instances should not be repeated,” said Adv. Panjak Mishra who represented the victims in court. According to Mishra, the parents had repeatedly asked for increased police patrolling in the area but to no avail. “It is the duty of the police to ensure that the girls feel safe and patrolling by the Nirbhaya Squad should be increased in areas where such complaints are made,” he said while thanking mid-day for pursuing the matter. “I have filed the mid-day articles as exhibits in court.”

Also Read: Mumbai: Cops rescue 112 missing teens in quest to ID body found at seaface

Family speaks

According to a girl’s family, a group of minor boys would gather around the school premises and pass vulgar comments as the girls left school. On January 19 they also threw eggs at the girls and fled the scene. “Our girls have been harassed daily. The boys would come on bikes in groups and harass the girls. I had approached the Sakinaka police to register an FIR, but they said that an FIR could not be registered as the boys were all minors. The harassment continued and so we decided to approach the HC,” said the father of a 14-year-old girl who was harassed.

“The Sakinaka police were totally uncooperative and every time we visited the police station to complain, they would say that the boys were minors and so they couldn't do anything. My daughter is scared to go to school alone. Now that the HC has directed the Sakinaka police to patrol the areas and counsel the boys, we hope this harassment will stop,” added the girl’s father. The mother of one of the girls stated that they had also asked the police to deploy a constable near the school but nothing was done despite repeated requests. “Now with the HC order, my daughter will be able to take her exams without worrying,” she said.

According to sources, the Sakinaka police asked permission to file the affidavit after 3 weeks as the minor boys have their examinations. The cops also assured the court that the boys would not harass the girls anymore. “The boys have their exams so we sought 3 weeks time, to which the court agreed. We will file an affidavit regarding the course of investigation and further course of action. The safety of the girls will be ensured,” said a police officer.

CopSpeak

“We will ensure that the girls are provided security. We have already written to the Child Welfare Committee to counsel the boys and will write again now. The police is continuously patrolling areas near the school. We will ensure the girls feel safe even after the exams,” said an officer. Mangesh Shinde, DCP, Zone 10, said that police officers in civil clothes are present outside the school premises, while the Nirbhaya Squad is counselling the children. “We had a meeting with the school management and it was decided that teachers would also be present when the girls leave the school. We will ensure that the girls are safe,” he said.

Special committee?

“We are going to write a suggestion letter to HC, recommending that a committee be formed to ensure that such offences are redressed within 24 hours. We will also suggest that awareness programmes be organised at schools so that girls who face such harassment come forward,” Adv. Mishra said.

Jan 19
Day the minor boys hurled eggs at the schoolgirls

3 Weeks
Time sought by the police to file affidavit about case

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