Following a recent spate of similar incidents, yet another auto rickshaw driver assaulted a woman passenger this week in Kandivli; she saved herself by flinging her bag at his face and escaping
Just a day after mid-day reported two separate incidents in which auto rickshaw drivers harassed or assaulted girls, another such episode took place on Wednesday, when a 24-year-old working woman was allegedly abducted and molested by an auto driver, who fled only after she hit him with her bag.
mid-day’s reports on March 3
On March 3, this paper had reported two incidents that were similar in nature in the first, a five-year-old girl was abducted from her neighbourhood in Andheri and then brutally raped in the Aarey Colony forest and left there to die.
In the second, two girls, aged 17 and 22, jumped from a running auto rickshaw in Thane, after the driver refused to stop the vehicle, and instead kept staring at them and making vulgar statements.
Wednesday’s incident took place in Kandivli (West), after the woman boarded the auto rickshaw from outside her office in Malad around 10.30 pm, to return to her residence in Kandivli. Instead of taking her home, however, the driver took a different route and went beyond Kandivli, to Mahavir Nagar, where he stopped the vehicle in an isolated area.
He began to molest her in the auto itself and was about to rape her, when she hurled her handbag at his face. While her assailant was still stunned, the woman managed to run towards the main road. But by the time she found someone to help her, the auto driver had already escaped.
The woman said, “The driver was continuously staring at me in the rear-view mirror and he suddenly took the auto in the wrong direction, where no one was present. He stopped the vehicle, grabbed my hand and attacked me. I hit his head with my bag and ran away.”
The next evening, she registered a complaint with the Charkop police station. “She also noted down the auto rickshaw’s registration number, but we found that it was not a valid number. We registered a kidnapping and molestation case against the accused driver and are now taking help from the CCTV cameras in the area,” said an officer from Charkop police station.
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