A 40-year-old woman and her 15-year-old daughter jumped off a running train after a group of men attempted to rape the girl on board Howrah-Jodhpur Express late Saturday night.
The mother and daughter who were travelling from Kolkata to Delhi in an unreserved coach, were forced to jump off the train when the men tried to drag the girl into the toilet. The incident happened when the train was between Chandari and Kanpur railway stations.
The two fainted after jumping off the train. They remained unconscious for nearly two hours. After regaining consciousness, the injured mother and daughter walked to the Chandari railway station where people called an ambulance and rushed them to the Lala Lajpat Rai hospital.
The Government Railway Police (GRP) came to know about the incident late on Sunday.
“We are in the process of registering an FIR on the complaint,” said Ram Mohan Rai, SHO, GRP Kanpur.
The woman’s husband works in a private firm in Delhi and the daughter is a student of Class 9 in Kolkata.
The woman told the police that the group of nearly 10-15 men started taunting and teasing her daughter soon after the train left Howrah.
They also tried to grope the girl following which the mother rushed to the Railway Protection Force (RPF) constables escorting the train when it stopped at two stations. She claimed she complained twice about the constant harassment, first when the train was near Allahabad, and again at Allahabad.
“The constables accompanied me to the compartment and nabbed three of them. They even slapped them and took them away,” she told media at the hospital.
“However, the men came back within 30 minutes, perhaps after bribing cops,” she alleged.
To her horror, they got more aggressive after the train left Allahabad and kept threatening them that they would drug the girl and sell her off. Around 10 pm, four to five men pounced on the girl when she was going towards the toilet.
Hearing her scream, the mother rushed towards them and fought with them before finally jumping off the train with her daughter.
“In the struggle, my daughter’s clothes were torn. We had to jump off as we had no choice,” she said.
The police said her husband has been informed and he was on his way to Kanpur. The woman said they would submit a formal complaint only after his arrival.
Despite the woman’s allegations of that the RPF constables took bribes to let off the offenders, the North Central Railway which runs the Howrah-Jodhpur Express distanced itself from the incident.
“The incident took place near Howrah, which is in not under our jurisdiction. When she reported the matter at Rasoolabad near Chandari station, the RPF constables provided her all the assistance and got them admitted to hospital,” said Gaurav Bansal, North Central Railway’s chief PRO.