Denying earlier reports that the harassed mother and daughter jumped off the running bus owned by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, the mother whose condition is serious in a hospital said they were pushed out from a speedy bus.
When a group of rowdies in the garb of passengers harassed, the mother begged the driver to stop the bus near Moga, 170 km from Chandigarh, but the driver reportedly increased the speed to let the rowdies, now joined by the conductor, who was employed by the Punjab CM’s bus company Orbit Bus to have fun at the mother and daughter.
The daughter died before taken to the hospital and the mother narrated that the hoodlums had first pushed her daughter out of the running bus, and then her.
“No one helped. They first pushed my daughter off the bus, then me,” said the girl’s mother, 38, whose condition is described as serious now.
While the driver, conductor and cleaner were arrested, how far did India change from the horrible night of Dec 12, 2012 that saw ‘Nirbhaya’ raped and tortured in a running bus circling Munirka in Delhi?
Thw whole nation was shocked then and vowed to end harassment of women but little has changed in Punjab, where the chief minister himself is the owner of the bus and he is protected by the BJP-ruled NDA government in the Centre now.
When the issue was raised in parliament, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal said that it could happen to anyone and anywhere.
“A big tragedy has happened. It could have happened on any bus. It is sad regardless of whether it happened on a truck, bus or jeep. No matter who the bus belongs to, I’m very sad that such a thing has happened,” Mr Badal said.
Now that the chief minister admitted the incident, and that he himself is the owner of the bus, he should self-sack himself from the position owning the responsibility. More than politicising the issue, all women should condemn it as a social stigma that we should abhor forever.