Protests have erupted across Assam, including Guwahati, on a girls Facebook post about allegedly being molested in Jorhat town by a group of motorbike riding youths and a state ministers reaction to her posting.
Public meetings, rallies and signature campaigns were held against helmet wearing youths allegedly groping, harassing and verbally abusing the girl in Jorhat last week.
The girl last week had put up a Facebook post about her harassment which went viral, arousing shock, concern and anger among students, womens organisations and others.
The matter had come up for discussion in the Assembly on February 13 when legislators raised the issue.
Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary, who had joined the BJP before Assam elections, made fun of the victim’s agony by identifying the girl as an SFI activist and said that she should have lodged a police complaint instead of writing it on Facebook.
The girl’s harassment and the minister’s remarks together sparked further protests on Wednesday in Jorhat, Golaghat and Sonitpur districts, besides Guwahati, where eminent citizens took part in rallies that demanded the ministers resignation for “making such an irresponsible statement”.
Sanjukta Parashar an IPS officer and a former superintendent of police in Jorhat, supported the girl in a Facebook post.
Sahitya Akademi winner Nirupama Borgohain lauded the girls courage for bringing the issue in public domain in the interest of others risking her own security.
The speakers in the rally said that the government should take measures to stop such harassment and provide security to women in the state.
Assam Director General of Police Mukesh Sahay has said the girl has not lodged any complaint with the police but the force registered a suo motu FIR and investigations are on.
The victim’s Facebook post and the BJP leader’s subsequent insensitive remarks caused furore on social media too.
She is the voice of girls all across that face harrassment. Shameful that a BJP leader has ridiculed her for standing up. #VoiceOfSubhalaxmi
— Hasiba B. Amin (@HasibaAmin) February 15, 2017
— With Congress (@WithCongress) February 15, 2017
— Salman Nizami (@SalmanNizami_) February 15, 2017
Bjp in Assam has totally failed2provide security2women.Never b4 in congress rule has such incidents happend in daylight. #VoiceOfSubhalaxmi
— Mousumi Borgohain (@OxomiyaJiyori) February 15, 2017
It may be a men's world but without women d world is powerless minister, Chandramohan Patowary must know tt & support #VoiceOfSubhalaxmi
— seema (@seemaadhikari) February 15, 2017
Jumla No…. lost count Ram Rajya under Modi
Then what is this? #VoiceOfSubhalaxmi
Acche Din for Road Romeos
Wah! Modi Wah!
— Radha Charan Das (@radhacharandas) February 15, 2017
(With PTI inputs)