After mid-day published a report on how police were scared to enter Joseph Patel wadi, the home of the 12 goons who had harassed and thrashed a fashion designer and her fiancé, police finally arrested four of the men
Versova police finally managed to muster enough ‘courage’ to arrest the accused who had allegedly harassed and thrashed a fashion designer and her fiancé. Four of the twelve accused have been arrested, while a hunt is on for the rest.
The goons passed lewd comments on Pia Grace and when her fiance Rahul Bawankule protested, 5-6 men thrashed him. When Grace protested, the remaining assaulted her
The incident had occurred on Friday, when fashion designer Pia Grace and her fiancé Rahul Bawankule were leaving from the former’s studio in Aram Nagar. 12 drunken men passed lewd comments at Grace, and when her fiance asked them not to misbehave, 5-6 men thrashed him.
mid-day’s report on December 15
When Grace protested, the remaining assaulted her. To make matters worse, the police refused to register an FIR after the incident; only a non-cognisable complaint (NC) was taken.
Even when the cops actually got around to registering the case, they hadn’t made any arrests despite Grace telling them she could recognise at least one of the attackers, because the police were too scared to go into Joseph Patel wadi, a slum pocket behind Grace’s studio, where the goons resided. Cops thought the area was “too dangerous” to walk into; mid-day had reported about this on December 15.
Getting act together
After mid-day’s report, cops finally decided to take action. With the help of informers, police identified the places in Joseph Patel wadi where the goons stayed. They then got sketches made with the help of Grace, and picked up the four men within an hour on Monday. They were booked on Tuesday.
According to Versova police station sources, “After the incident, we were facing pressure from the top officials. We formed a team to nab the culprits, and have managed to catch four men. The remaining eight are still absconding. We have activated our informers and are subsequently trying to collect information from the arrested accused, too. We will nab them as soon as possible.”
Grace, who had threatened to go in herself if the police didn’t arrest the men, said, “I am a bit satisfied with the arrests. I have identified all the accused who thrashed my fiancé and me. But I will never forget the attitude of Mumbai police in my life. If the cops had registered the FIR on the day of incident, all the men would’ve been arrested by now.”
The arrested accused were booked under various section of the Indian Penal Code, including 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), and 506 (ii).