Journalist detained for sexually harassing lawyer on local Mumbai train

Government Railways Police (GRP) arrested a 43-year-old history soap opera on Saturday for allegedly sexually harassing a 25-year-old lawyer traveling alone in a first-class women’s compartment of a local train at the station in Jogeshwari in Mumbai, police say.

The complainant had claimed that GRP staff behaved insensitively when she went to lodge a complaint, sparking outrage on social media. The GRP then expressed its regrets.

The accused, Biharilal Yadav, was arrested in Mahalaxmi suburb in central Mumbai, an official said.

Yadav has a criminal record which was also arrested in October 2021, he said.

The incident happened on Wednesday morning as the lawyer was traveling from Cotton Green station to Jogeshwari station on a Harbor line train.

Yadav boarded the women’s first-class compartment the lawyer was traveling in alone at Andheri station and sexually harassed her. He fled when the train stopped at Jogeshwari station, according to the FIR.

The victim recounted his ordeal on Twitter in several messages.

The GRP formed four teams, the official said, adding that one of the teams checked on repeat offenders.

During the investigation, Yadav’s photo matched the description provided by the complainant.

A GRP team then visited Yadav’s house in Kalva in neighboring Thane district. He was arrested in the Mahalaxmi suburb of Mumbai.

The lawyer later tweeted that GRP staff behaved insensitively when she went to file a complaint.

“When I arrived at Andheri Railway Police Station, I was visibly distressed and crying. As I spoke to the police chief and told them that I had been assaulted and that I would be comfortable telling a female cop about it, the first question he asked me was “Molestion kya hota hai “(what is aggression),” the woman tweeted.

As she identified the attacker in the CCTV footage, a female police officer kept telling her that being a lawyer she should have punched the man.

She claimed she was made to recount the incident three or four times and her statement was finally recorded after three hours at the Andheri Railway Police Station.

The GRP then expressed its regrets.

“Madam, we deeply regret the inconvenience caused to you. The investigation is ongoing and we appreciate your cooperation throughout the day. We have noted your account of the behavior of our staff and will raise awareness accordingly,” the GRP tweeted.

Yadav was booked under section 354-A (punishment for sexual harassment) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the official said, adding that on the face of it he had consumed ”bhang” (a cannabis-based narcotic) at the time of the incident.

It is handed over to Borivali’s GRP for further investigation.

(This story has not been edited by the Devdiscourse team and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Jon J. Epps