Kolkata: Former Miss India Universe Ushoshi Sengupta was harassed and abused by a group of youths while travelling back home from work late on Monday night in the heart of the state capital. After a harrowing few hours, alleged police inaction and a viral social media post, seven men have been arrested so far.
The incident took place at around 11.30pm when some men on a two-wheeler hit the cab in which Sengupta and her friend were travelling near the busy Exide Crossing. Within moments, about 15 men appeared at the scene and started banging on the car windows.
They dragged the driver out of the cab and roughed him up. Sengupta then started recording the incident on her mobile phone wherein the youths can be seen boasting that they don’t have their helmets.
When the youths started beating up the driver, Sengupta and her friend screamed for help. She approached an officer of Maidan Police Station for help, but he told her that the area of crime did not fall under his jurisdiction and hence, he was helpless.
Sengupta, who later narrated her ordeal in Facebook, wrote “This is when I broke down I begged them to come or else the boys would have killed the driver. The officers came and held the boys saying why are they creating nuisance. The boys pushed the police officers and ran away. After everything was over two officers from Bhawanipore police station came, by then it was 12 AM. I requested the driver to drop me and my colleague home and decided to take it up with the police station tomorrow morning.
“To my utter surprise the boys followed us till my colleagues house and right when we were dropping him near Lake Gardens government housing 6 of the boys in 3 bikes came and stopped my car, threw stones, broke the car. (They) Dragged me out and tried to break my phone to delete the video. My colleague jumped out of fear and I was completely shaken. I came out started shouting by now the locals had come out.”
When she went to the Charu Market Police Station to file a report, she was told that she could do the same only at Bhawanipore Police Station where the incident had taken place.
“At this point I gave up and started shouting. 1:30 am. No female police officer at the station. After raising a lot of questions the officer took my complaint but refused to take the uber drivers complain stating that 2 FIR’s can’t be taken for the same complain. And he told me that it’s against the law. My Uber driver insisted that he wants to do (file) the complaint but the officers didn’t take it. I am attaching the video of the mob and the picture of the broken car,” she wrote.
Sengupta's post has gone viral and has been shared over 6,500 times at the time of filing this report.
Soon after, the Kolkata Police wrote on Twitter, “We have taken this incident very seriously and seven persons have been arrested so far. On the order of the Commissioner of Police, Kolkata, an inquiry regarding the non-registration of F.I.R. has been initiated into this incident, at a very senior level. (sic)”
Sengupta told News18, “I am finding it difficult to believe that it is my Kolkata. How come youths without helmets are roaming fearlessly in Kolkata and teasing people? You can see in my video how all of them were laughing. They were misbehaving, manhandling and tried to snatch my bag. It happened in the heart of the city. It’s shocking. I am thankful to Kolkata Commissioner of Police who called me after getting to know about the incident and I heard that all of them were arrested.”
Seven of the youths arrested were identified as Rohit, Fardin Khan, Sabir Ali, Gani, Imran Ali, Wasim and Atif Khan.
“I left other cities and chose Kolkata for my career, but I can’t believe that my city has become like this,” the former Miss India said.
Sengupta had won the title of ‘I Am She – Miss Universe India’ and represented her country in Miss Universe 2010 held at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas.