Cops forced women at shelter to strip, dance?

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MUMBAI: Maharashtra home minister Anil Deshmukh has said that a fourmember committee had been set up to probe an incident in which women from a state-run shelter home in


were allegedly made to dance naked in front of police personnel.
His statement in the assembly came after the issue was raised by BJP MLA Sweta Mahale, who said a video clip of the “shocking incident” had gone viral. She said it “occurred in Jalgaon at the Ashadeep hostel for women.” She demanded a probe and immediate suspension of the policemen.
Deshmukh said the panel “will present its report in two days and the


will take appropriate action.” The probe team has been set up by Jalgaon collector Abhijeet Raut. “It has visited the hostel twice. They interacted with inmates and the woman who made the allegations,” said Raut. “The team is yet to come across any evidence to suggest that such an incident took place,” he added.
When the issue was raised by Mahale, BJP MLA

Sudhir Mungantiwar

said he would demand President’s rule if this was the condition of law and order in the state. NCP’s

Nawab Malik

reacted to this and said, “It is wrong to threaten a democratically elected government with President’s rule.” The video of the 35-year old woman making the allegation has sent ripples across Jalgaon. It shows the woman alleging that on March 1, some people including policemen came into the hostel and instructed the inmates to strip and dance in front of them. Cops and hostel staff were handin-glove, she alleged.
The government hostel has 18 inmates aged between 17 and 60 years of age. The inmates mainly comprise women rescued in cases of Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, domestic violence or victimised girls in cases of

Pocso Act

. Activists who shot the video of the complainant, shared it with the collector and a few others, following which it went viral. The probe committee comprises probationary IAS officer Trupti Dhodmise, a psychiatrist from Jalgaon general hospital, a government hospital gynaecologist and a woman police inspector. As per Raut, the probe will examine aspects including security at the women’s hostel and the mental state of the inmate.

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