The allegation had rocked the state assembly on Wednesday, and the minister had responded by saying that an all-woman four-member panel had been constituted to investigate the matter. “The panel recorded the statements of 17 inmates,” he said.
Women just did garba, no cop was present: Min
Deshmukh said in the assembly that 17 Ashadeep hostel inmates and 41 witnesses had been questioned and the panel had found that there was no truth to the allegations.
He said that on February 20, an entertainment programme was held for the inmates of the shelter home, where they read out poetry and danced garba. “One of the women who was doing the garba felt uncomfortable and removed her gown. No policeman was present at the event and they are not allowed inside the shelter home,” he said, adding there was no video showing the women dancing in front of policemen.
Women and child welfare minister Yashomati Thakur said it was a case of fake news published in a newspaper and it had unfairly tarnished the image of the shelter home.
BJP MLA Shweta Mahale had raised the Jalgaon issue in the assembly.
Deputy chief minister Ajit Pawar said: “We are all concerned when anything happens to the women in the state, but I would request legislators to conduct some checks before raising these issues.”
Leader of the opposition in the assembly Devendra Fadnavis said that another incident had surfaced in Osmanabad where a woman had committed suicide after alleging that she had been raped at gunpoint by a policeman. Pawar said the government would inquire and take action if needed.