Bongaigaon, June 25: A 29-year-old Guwahati-based female journalist was allegedly assaulted by a gang of drunken men in a ladies coach of a local train near Tihu in Nalbari district. An FIR has been lodged in Bongaigaon GRP. The freelancer was travelling in the ladies compartment of Manas Rhino passenger train on June 22 which leaves Guwahati at 5:30 pm. The incident took place before reaching Tihu town in Nalbari district. There were only four ladies in the compartment then. “Four men got into the compartment in Kaithalkuchi station. They started making awful comments at the four ladies left in the compartment by then. I could sense that at least two were in an inebriated condition. One of them was standing pretty close to my seat. I politely asked him to get down as it was a ladies compartment. He said he would get down at his destination at Tihu,” she said.
“But suddenly, one of the men came towards me and groped me tightly and started touching me inappropriately. Blank for a moment, I jumped up and somehow freed myself from his clutches and slapped and punched him in defense,” said the journalist. The incident happened when no security personnel were spotted in and around the coaches. It was only after several stoppages that the scribe was attended by two security personnel to ensure a ‘safe’ journey.
“I was dumbstruck, terrified and ashamed. I somehow pulled myself up and considering my further safety, got down and shifted to a general compartment. I did not find any security personnel in and around the train,” said the Guwahati-based journalist who was travelling to Chirang district for an assignment. The three other women who were in the compartment did not even raise a voice when the incident took place. They just stepped out of the compartment silently, said the journalist.
She lodged an FIR at the Government Railway Police Force (GRPF) post at Bongaigaon railway station, which was her destination also. The GRP has said that the culprits will be nabbed. However, there was no CCTV in the station where the assailants got down from the train. The railway authorities could not give any clarification as to how these men got into the ladies compartment.
“This incident has left me in utter shock. It reminds me that women are never safe, not even inside a so-called ladies compartment. It feels helpless, very helpless!” said the journalist.