Society Should Share the Blame with Police: Dikshit

Delhi Chief Minister attracts ire with her remarks that Delhi Police alone should not be held responsible for the shocking incident in which a 21- year-old college girl was shot dead in broad day light

New Delhi
Society Should Share the Blame with Police: Dikshit
Instead of reassuring the citizens of Delhi that her government would take stern measures to control rising crime -- particularly against women -- in the city, Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit today sought to shift at least some of the blame on the indifferent attitude of passersby for the shocking incident in which a 21- year-old college girl was shot dead in broad day light.

The Chief Minsiter said the civil society should raise its voice and not remain mute spectators to such incidents.

Asking people and civil society to play a "responsible role" in ensuring safety of women in the city, Dikshit said that not a single person had come forward to help Radhika Tanwar after she received bullet injuries in the crowded area near Dhuala Kuan.

"It was not an isolated place. So many people were there. But none of them either raised voice or came forward to take her to a hospital. It is extremely unfortunate that everybody present there kept their eyes shut and she was taken to hospital only after police van had reached," said Dikshit.

'No Confidence in the Police'

Dikshit's remarks have attracted the ire of most civil rights activists who are outraged that the CM should not only not own up responsibility for the alarming rise in crime against women but also blame the society.

"It is like asking the society to introspect whenever a scam is reported," said an activist. "The politicians are happy to claim then that they too come from the same society so the society should take steps to root out the evil."

While people are willing to accept the validity of Mrs Dikshit's observation, they point out that the situation has reached this sorry pass only because nobody has any confidence in Delhi Police. Citizens hesitate to come forward because they are afraid of being victimised, say activists.

Tanwar, a second-year degree student, was killed outside her college in Dhaula Kuan's Shantiniketan area on Tuesday by a man, who is believed to have been stalking her for sometime.

Holding that civil society's indifferent attitude to the incident was really a matter of concern, Dikshit said police alone should not be held responsible for such incidents.

"People who were present at the spot shut their eyes, saying it doesn't matter to me and I am not concerned. This is unfortunate.

"Police should not be held responsible alone. It is a collective responsibility of police as well as civil society to ensure safety of women in the city," Dikshit, who had yesterday blamed police for deteriorating law and order situation, said.

She added that the girl's parents were upset so they blamed the police.

A couple of years back, when a young journalist was shot dead late at night, Mrs Dikshit had asked the families to question the girls to be out alone on the streets that late at night.

Delhi Police had also expressed its dismay yesterday that no one who was present at the scene has come forward as witness to the incident.

Dikshit had yesterday met the family of Tanwar at Naraina village and assured the family of the girl that her government will do the needful so that the family gets justice.

The Police Commissioner has earlier said Delhiites do not react sharply to incidents of molestation and eve-teasing like Mumbaikars or Kolkatans.

Gupta had said active cooperation of public is of "paramount importance" since police presence may not be available at all places where such incidents occur.

"As compared to Mumbai and Kolkata where citizens sharply react to any incident of molestation of eve-teasing, such reactions are totally lacking or missing on the part of citizens of Delhi who have a vital role to play in preventing harassment to the women travelling in the city," Gupta had said.
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