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Molestation: Patowary facing ire

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Feb 15: Slogans rent the air in Assam following statewide protests against State Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary’s statement on the molestation of a girl at Jorhat recently. Such a public protest was staged at Dighalipukhuripar in Guwahati also amidst the presence of around 150 people.

In the Assam Legislative Assembly, on the other hand, Speaker Hitendra th Goswami today said: “The incident occurred in my LAC. BPF MLA Kamali Basumatary did raise the issue the other day properly. Minister Chandra Mohan Patyowary also gave his reply properly on the issue inside the House. However, only the minister can say what he said on the issue outside the House. This is a sad incident. While making statement against anyone we need to be very cautious so that nobody gets hurt.”

Through the media, the Chief Minister said at Majuli today that that those involved in the incident would not be spared.

Reacting sharply to Patowary’s comment that ‘the harassed girl is associated with a Communist organization,’ writer Nirupama Borgohain said at the protest meeting in the city: “This statement takes us back to the days of Hitler. I appeal to all to stand beside the harassed girl.”

Noted jourlist Sivath Barman said: “The downslide of social atmosphere is the reason behind such an incident. The need of the hour is a change in the trend.”

Noted story writer Rat Bharali Talukdar said: “The minister who made such a light statement on the molestation of a girl also speaks loud on women empowerment.”

Research scholar of Gauhati University Daisy Barman said: “The time for keeping mum on such issues has long been passé.”

The meeting concluded with a sigture campaign. Students from Cotton College, B Barooah College, Handique College, Gauhati University etc., took part at the protest meeting.

Meanwhile, the Assam Pradesh Mahila Congress (APMC), led by its president Shej Yasmin Haque, staged a dhar in front of Rajiv Bhavan in the city today. Many APMC leaders took part at the protest. Talking to newsmen later, APMC secretary Munmi Dutta said: “It’s unfortute that Patowary termed the harassed girl student an SFI activist. Instead of making any such statements, he should’ve laid more stress on providing security for women.”

Meanwhile, State DGP Mukesh Sahay said: “No FIR has been lodged as yet in the incident of molestation in Jorhat. We’re looking after it on our own.”

About the author

Ankur Kalita