The conductor of a bus, who allegedly locked up a young Bengaluru woman in a BMTC bus on Wedsneday evening, was on Thursday arrested by the city police.
The accused, identified as Umashankar (51), has been booked under Sections 341 and 342 of IPC. Dr Harsha PS, Deputy Commissioner of Police, North East Division, Bengaluru City, tweeted that a "criminal complaint with FIR no 68/16 has been registered at yelahanka police station".
Umashankar has also filed a complaint against the girl's friend for assault.
A woman was allegedly locked up in a BMTC bus near Yelahanka police station in Bengaluru by the conductor, driver and a few police inspectors. The victim, Diya(name changed), posted on Facebook explaining the incident and narrating her trauma.
Her post also had a video taken by her while being locked up in the bus and a photograph of the conductor who locked her up.
According to her post, she was locked up alone in the bus after her male friend allegedly got into an argument with the conductor for standing between the ladies and the gents section of the bus (402B, KA8022). She was returning from college.
According to the post, the angry driver stopped the bus near the police station and her friend fled immediately. Reacting to this, they locked her up for 45 minutes until her friend returned. A few police personnel were also witness to the incident.
The police and bus conductor repeatedly asked her for details about her friend, while she pleaded with them to not lock her up when there was no lady constable.
Her refusal to give any information angered them and they began to curse her. She was let out only after a few of her other friends came to the police station.
However her ordeal did not end there. The police officials allegedly denied to take her complaint. She said that the inspector even tried to discourage her saying, "maybe 5..6.. 10 yearsâ€¦ you'll have to go to court everyday and whenever they call you.. why do you want to go through all that?"
Diya told The News Minute that the conductor and her friend,got into a fight after he got up from the ladies seat and sat on the stairs in front of the door. "He doesn't travel with me regularly but he decided to do so yesterday. He told the conductor that he is not sitting on the ladies seat anymore. But the conductor abused him in Kannada and asked him to move away from the stairs," she said.
"My friend was enraged at the way the conductor behaved and they got out of the bus and had an agrument which escalated into a fight. They conductor pushed my friend and my friend did the same,"she said.
"My friend walked away, but the conductor decided to take the bus to a police station which was three stops away. Passengers got down and asked me to get down too so that a complaint could be filed. I did not cooperate, and they just decided to lock me in the bus. They kept asking me to get my friend to police station when I was not concerned with the issue. After 45 minutes my friend turned up at the police station with a few of our friends," she added.
However, she said would not file the complaint as her family is afraid of the repurcussions. "If the police has taken up the case, then I really hope the conductor and the driver are punished."
Dr. P S Harsha, DCP (north-east) Bengaluru said that the Facebook post has been taken as the complaint. "As far as I am informed, the conductor asked her batchmate from sitting on a ladies seat. It later escalated to a fight . The conductor fell after her friend pushed. Now the passengers demanded legal action to be taken against the boy and they stopped the bus near the police station," he said.
Asked whether action would be taken against the Yelahanka police inspector NR Nagraj for discouraging the woman from filing the complaint, Harsha said, "The issue would be studied from all angles and a report will be submitted by an ACP rank officer today."
Shyamala, public relation officer at Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation(BMTC) said that BMTC wasa not aware of the issue. "We will confirm with the police and take necessary action against the conductor and driver if they are at fault," she said.