Tarn Taran assault: Apex court pulls up Punjab govt

The Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a magisterial inquiry report into an incident, involving beating up of a woman by a group of policemen in Punjab's Tarn Taran district last month and pulled up the state for not taking the corrective measures.

"The report is rejected. It is misleading and containing wrong facts," said a Bench led by Justice G S Singhi and added that it did not have the value more that a scrap paper to be thrown in the dustbin.

It ordered that the girl be provided protection and directed the Secretary, Union Territory of Chandigarh administration, to make available adequate security to her. It clarified that the security provided to the girl should not be from Punjab Police.

"Do you not feel ashamed when a lady is beaten up by police and the state DGP goes on television on that very day justifying the action without conducting any inquiry against police officials," it said.

The Bench also indicated that it would impose hefty cost on Punjab.

"We will definitely impose the penalty but that will not solve the problem altogether. What is the solution? It is happening everyday. Helpless women are beaten up mercilessly without reasons. Problem lies with the recruitment. It is the psyche of a policeman who gets bad treatment from his senior and he is on 24-hour duty. He then finds common man as the softest target," said the Bench.

Attorney General G E Vahanvati said that fundamental point is to prevent recurrence of such events and proper amendments in the police manuals by the states to incorporate specific provisions for dealing with women and handling difficult situations with sensitivity. He added that states must also apprise the court about the status of police complaint authorities.

The court fixed the matter for April 11 to delve on all the issues in detail.

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