Unable to bear the lewd comments and the constant harassment meted out to her by two men and their friends, a 17-year-old nursing student and her family members took a brave stance last night and beat them with footwear at Bandra railway station and later at the police station.
Nafeesa Sheikh (name changed), a resident of Wadala, is a nursing student at an institute at Virar. On her way home, each day, she would normally travel by the same train — a 9.14 pm local from Bandra to CST. And each day on her return, she would have to tolerate catcalls and vulgar remarks passed by the culprits — identified as Mohd Mehkarul Sheikh (35), Bijanoor Musa Lashkar (22) and two of their friends.
She said that the abuse was going on for a week and, on one occasion, they had even followed her home from the station. “Initially, I ignored them but later, I got scared as they even followed me home. The area where I reside is not good and travelling in night has become unsafe amid the increasing incidences of crimes against women. Hence, I decided to tell my mother,” she said.
Realising her daughter was in trouble, Nafeesa’s mother immediately informed an NGO, who in turn relayed the information to the Bandra Government Railway Police (GRP).
Officials from Bandra GRP then decided to lay a trap in order to nab the culprits red handed. On Monday night, they placed 15 staff in civil clothes, including four female constables, said a GRP official. The officials were at Bandra station from 9 pm and as soon as the train arrived, Sheikh and Lashkar saw Nafeesa and said, “Aati hai kya, tujhe jannat dikhate hai.”
As soon as the staff received a signal from Nafeesa, they caught the two of them. However, for those who thought it would end there, it didn’t. Nafeesa’s family members, who were also present at the station couldn’t control their rage and started beating the duo with chappals and continued hitting them even at the Bandra GRP police station.
The accused, Sheikh and Lashkar, were produced in Mumbai Central court last afternoon and were remanded to police custody till October 3. Inspector Pradip Padavi, from Bandra GRP said, “The accused have been arrested under sections 354 and 170 of the IPC and we are trying to arrest the other two.”