Chandigarh: The Punjab Police top brass along with senior officials of Mohali district administration on Sunday met with a group of women students from Chandigarh University following allegations of objectionable videos of college hostellers being recorded by another student.
Police said it has been found during preliminary investigation that a woman student, a hosteller, had shared her own video with a youth from Himachal Pradesh whose role is also under the scanner.
Police said an FIR under IPC section 354-C (voyeurism) and the IT Act has been filed in the case and the woman student has been arrested.
ADGP Deo talks to the media
After the incident, Punjab’s Additional Director General of Police (ADGP), Gurpreet Deo, Mohali’s Senior Superintendent of Police Vivek Sheel Soni and other top officers, including G P S Bhullar, senior officials of Mohali district administration, including the deputy commissioner, reached the university campus to take stock of the situation.
Briefing reporters at the university campus, ADGP Deo, who also holds the charge of women and child affairs, said many rumours about the case were circulating on social media platforms.
“There are 4,000 women students who live in the hostel. One of them has been arrested by police. Her phone has been taken into police possession and the state cyber crime unit is conducting its analysis.
“Second part of the case is a group of women students in the hostel who saw the accused doing some objectionable acts. As the additional DG holding charge of women and child affairs, I was deputed to interact with the students because many rumours were circulating about this case.
“We had a meeting with 50-60 women students who live on the same floor along with the accused. Most of them have joined a new session and not know each other,” Deo said.
The senior police official said the women students were especially perturbed at the alleged circulation of ‘videos’ on social media.
Deo further said three to four women students spotted the accused in common washroom where she was taking some pictures with her phone “which they thought she was taking from underneath the bathroom door… They then reported the matter to the warden and subsequently the police were informed.
“I want to clarify that the students are now happy because their concerns have been addressed. The students needed a clarification on whether the accused’s phone had videos of other girls. Prima facie, we did not come across any such videos,” she said.
Youth from HP under the radar
Asked about the youth from Himachal Pradesh whose role is under the scanner, the ADGP said, “Ostensibly the girl student may have shared those with her boyfriend and a police party has been despatched to nab him. No other video has been found which can be called objectionable except for the girl’s own videos.”
“Let us not sensationalise the issue. Many things are circulating on social media platforms like girls attempted suicide, which are not correct,” she asserted.
Deo added that even if any video was deleted from the accused’s phone, “there is a possibility to forensically recover them. But let us not base anything on presumptions and assumptions and go according to scientific evidence”.
“The district police has already asked the state forensic laboratory to examine the bathroom area (of the hostel) and see whether any hidden camera or anything objectionable is there,” she said.
She added, “Even if the girl was sharing her video which you may say is a private affair between a boy and a girl, but what if tomorrow that youth misuses the video. Earlier too, we have handled cases in which such videos have gone viral on social media. But in the present case, so far, no such thing has taken place.”
Punjab CM promises strict action
Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has ordered a probe into the incident, saying strict action will be taken against those whosoever is found guilty.
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