Fury as TV crew film sex attack without helping victim

 

Delhi

Scenes captured on video by a television journalist of a mob molesting and stripping a teenage girl in a city in north-east India have triggered outrage across the country, with many demanding to know why the journalists filmed the 30-minute assault rather than trying to help the young woman.

At least four men have been arrested by police in the aftermath of the attack. Officers said they were able to identify a number of the alleged participants from the footage that was broadcast on television and subsequently uploaded on to the internet. The media channel has defended the actions of its staff.

The incident in the city of Guwahati in the state of Assam on Monday evening has once again highlighted the dangers and threats often faced by women in India, a nation where sexual harassment is often referred to by the media as "eve-teasing". While north India has long had a reputation for often being a dangerous place for women, Assam reportedly has a higher than average rate of such incidents.

Yesterday, television channels repeatedly broadcast the footage of the beating and assault of the young woman, said to have taken place after she had been celebrating a friend's birthday in a bar. The country's home minister, P Chidambaram, said action would be taken against those involved. "[The] molestation of women anywhere in India is condemnable," he said.

The chief minister of the state, Tarun Gogoi, said: "No one has the right to molest anyone. I have asked the police to keep a vigil on the anti-social elements."

As police in Guwahati, the state capital, said they were continuing their investigation, protesters took to the streets, putting up posters of the alleged culprits and demanding that the authorities act. Meanwhile, a flurry of allegations regarding the purported political connections of several of those involved have also been levelled.

Police said the incident happened outside a bar on the city's GS Road. The young woman, said to be a 17-year-old fashion student, had been attending the birthday party of a friend. For some reason, the group was asked to leave the bar and got into an argument on the street. At that point, a group of up to 15 men started attacking and molesting the student, apparently stripping her of her clothes.

On social media, many have asked why the journalists from the NewsLive channel did not try to intervene, or at least go for help. The channel could not be contacted last night but on Twitter, the channel's editor-in-chief, Atanu Bhuyan, said: "Some [media] questioned me as to why my reporter and camera person shot the incident and didn't prevent the mob from molesting the girl. But I'm backing my team since the mob would have attacked them, prevented them from shooting, that would have only destroyed all evidence."

Activists said that more needed to be done to change the mindset of those involved in such incidents.

Girija Vyas, former chairperson of the National Commission for Women, told the Asian News International agency: "We can sit on the president's post, but even today our condition is such that any person moving on the road can tease us or misbehave with us. The mindset has not changed even now."

The developments came as it was revealed that elsewhere in northern India, a local village council issued an order banning so-called "love marriages" and preventing young women from taking evening walks unescorted. Last night, it was reported the police had booked 10 members of the council, or khap panchayat, located in a village less than 50 miles from Delhi, for issuing the order.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Life and Style
love + sex A new study has revealed the average size - but does that leave men outside the 'normal' range being thought of as 'abnormal'?
Voices
The Palace of Westminster is falling down, according to John Bercow
voices..says Matthew Norman
Sport
Steve Bruce and Gus Poyet clash
football
Arts and Entertainment
Jake and Dinos Chapman were motivated by revenge to make 'Bring me the Head of Franco Toselli! '
arts + ents Shapero Modern Gallery to show explicit Chapman Brothers film
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Arts and Entertainment
Kurt Cobain performing for 'MTV Unplugged' in New York, shortly before his death
music Brett Morgen's 'Cobain: Montage of Heck' debunks many of the myths surrounding the enigmatic singer
Sport
Brendan Rodgers
football The Liverpool manager will be the first option after Pep Guardiola
Life and Style
life
Sport
Christian Benteke of Aston Villa celebrates scoring the winner for Aston Villa
football
Arts and Entertainment
Myanna Buring, Julian Rhind-Tutt and Russell Tovey in 'Banished'
TV Jimmy McGovern tackles 18th-century crime and punishment
Arts and Entertainment
Paul Whitehouse as Herbert
arts + ents
News
Bill O'Reilly attends The Hollywood Reporter 35 Most Powerful People In Media Celebration at The Four Seasons Restaurant on April 16, 2014 in New York City
media It is the second time he and the channel have clarified statements
News
people
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Lettings and Sales Negotiator - OTE £46,000

£16000 - £46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...

Recruitment Genius: Home Care Worker - Reading and Surrounding Areas

£9 - £13 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity to join a s...

Recruitment Genius: Key Sales Account Manager - OTE £35,000

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Have you got a proven track rec...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive - OTE £40,000

£15000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a great opportunity for...

Day In a Page

Syrian conflict is the world's first 'climate change war', say scientists, but it won't be the last one

Climate change key in Syrian conflict

And it will trigger more war in future
How I outwitted the Gestapo

How I outwitted the Gestapo

My life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
The nation's favourite animal revealed

The nation's favourite animal revealed

Women like cuddly creatures whilst men like creepy-crawlies
Is this the way to get young people to vote?

Getting young people to vote

From #VOTESELFISH to Bite the Ballot
Poldark star Heida Reed: 'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'

Poldark star Heida Reed

'I don't think a single bodice gets ripped'
The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn