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The incident happened during a cultural event in Asolpara area of Chaygaon in Assam’s Kamrup (rural) district on June 7
The incident happened during a cultural event in Asolpara area of Chaygaon in Assam’s Kamrup (rural) district on June 7|Representational image
ASSAM

Assam: 3 more held for forcing women dancers to strip in Chaygaon

Members of the Rainbow Dance Group were allegedly heckled by a mob of about 700-800 men during a cultural event in Kamrup district; total arrests go up to 5 so far

Simran Bajaj

Guwahati: Three persons were held in relation to the Chaygaon molestation case on Monday, taking the total arrests to five so far.

On June 7, a mob of about 700-800 men had allegedly forced about 42 women dancers of a troupe called Rainbow Dance Group to strip and perform during a cultural event in Asolpara area of Chaygaon in Assam’s Kamrup (rural) district.

Earlier, on June 9, two persons were apprehended over the incident that took place at an ‘unauthorised’ event, as per the police.

Rupam Hazarika, in-charge of Chaygaon police station, said that Rehmat Ali, Nizamuddin and Sanjoy Charaborty were arrested on Monday. Earlier, Shahrukh Khan and Subhan Khan were nabbed, he added.

Although the nature of the event is yet to be established, Hazarika said that no permission was taken from the local authorities. “Nonetheless, the situation is under control now,” he said.

Taking cognizance of the incident, on June 9, NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma had tweeted, “Talked to DGP Assam just now. He said the FIR is been registered and 2 of the accuseds got arrested. Told him to do proper inquiry and arrest the organizers.” She added that “NCW has taken suo motu and is in touch with SSP also.”

On June 7, the Rainbow Dance Group of Boko was invited to perform at a cultural event by Kuddus Ali, one of the organisers of the programme. What was supposed to be a dance performance turned into a nightmare when an unruly mob of 700-800 people started forcing the dancers to strip and perform. When they didn’t, crowd abused and “tried to touch their private parts,” read the FIR.

According to an FIR lodged at Chaygaon PS by Arup D Rabha, owner/head of the dance group, the crew was to perform at an event in Chamaria, a town in the same area, and was Rs 37,000 for the same.

However, on reaching Chamaria, they saw that nothing of that sort was happening, and called Ali, who informed that the location of the function is Asolpara, Jorsimuli.

As they reached the venue and started their performance, some members of the organising committee with active support of the local goons, forced them to strip and perform. Failing to do this, they threatened to kill them.

The FIR further alleged that the organisers had collected huge amounts of money from the villagers saying that girls from Cooch Behar were going to perform “vulgar” dance at the function.

While trying to escape, the unruly crowd tried to damage the troupe’s vehicle as well, said reports.

Six organisers of the event were named in the FIR including Kuddus Ali, Sayyed Khan, Atikul Islam, Samazuddin, Jeherul Islam and Abbas Ali, who are all absconding.

Investigations are still underway.