NHRC notice to the Government of Uttar Pradesh over reported burning of a woman by her tormentors amidst police inaction in district Sitapur (03.12.2018)

New Delhi, 3rd December, 2018

The National Human Rights Commission, NHRC has taken suo motu cognizance of media reports that a woman, victim of molestation, was set ablaze by her tormentors, when she was going to lodge a written complaint with the police station about them as suggested by the Police Control Room Van personnel in District Sitapur, Uttar Pradesh on the 1st December, 2018. Reportedly, in her recorded statement before a Magistrate at the hospital, the victim having 60 per cent burn injuries, named the two accused and narrated the inaction of the local police personnel.

The Commission has observed that the contents of the media reports, if true, amount to gross violation of human rights of the victim as the public servant appear to have failed to execute their duty to safeguard the victim woman from the rowdy elements. She appears to have fallen prey to police personnel’s apathy and sheer negligence. The police personnel who, instead of doing their duty to register an FIR and take legal action against the named accused, apparently turned her away in a casual manner. Had the timely action been taken by them, the woman could be saved from the brutal attack by the miscreants, who seemingly gathered more courage to attack her due to inaction by the police personnel.

Accordingly, the Commission has issued notices to the Chief Secretary and the Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh calling for a detailed report in the matter including action taken against the alleged delinquent police officials. The Commission would also like to know about present condition of the victim and status of medical treatment being provided to her. The response is expected within four weeks.

According to the media reports, carried today on the 3rd December, 2018, the two accused have been arrested for sexual assault and attempt to murder. Reportedly, they made lewd remarks and tried to molest the victim on the 29th November, 2018. On that day, she somehow managed to escape them and approached the police station, from where the police personnel sent her back without any action.

Reportedly, the next day her in-laws dialed the Police Control Room on 100 number and informed about the incident. Subsequently, a police arrived and directed them to lodge a written complaint regarding the incident in the police station. While, going to the police station on the 1st December, 2018, the two men again intercepted her; poured kerosene and set her on fire. Hearing her cries for help, some locals, admitted her to the hospital wherein her recorded statement before a magistrate.