Indian college student drags sexual assailant through streets as scores look on

Woman has called for more women to speak out against gender-based violence

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An Indian college student was forced to drag her sexual assailant to the local police station after scores of observers failed to intervene during the daylight attack.

Pradnya Mandhare, a third-year college student at Sathaye College on the outskirts of southern Indian city Mumbai, was boarding a train to return home at around 2.30pm on 18 March when the man, later identified only as Chavan, attacked her.

Ms Mandhere, 20, estimates a crowd of roughly 50 people stood Kandivli station in Vile Parle and watched as the “visibly drunk” man approached and “touched me inappropriately.”

“When I tried to avoid him, he grabbed me,” she told Indian news channel NDTV. “I was shocked for a couple of seconds, but then I started hitting him with my bag.”

The student described how Kandivli station is “always crowded,” but claimed although “so many” people saw Mr Chavan attack her, “no one came forward to help.”

She continued: “People stopped to stare, but no one bothered to even ask what was going on.”

“Since the man was filthy, I found it difficult to even touch him. I caught him by his hair and dragged him to the Government Railway Police (GRP) chowkie," she said.

 

As Ms Mandhere dragged Chavan down the street, towards the police station, still without any assistance from passer-bys, she said she was “afraid that he would attack” her again.

An officer from Borivli GRP confirmed to NDTV that they had arrested a man in connection with the incident.

The officer also claimed Chavan was a drug addict, adding a medical test was underway to determine whether he was intoxicated when he allegedly assaulted Ms Mandhere.

Following the incident, the college student has urged other Indian women to speak out against gender based violence.

“Every woman should fought back in such cases and they should not keep quiet,” she said, also expressing her gratitude to the officers who eventually arrested Chavan.

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