Six persons who forced a woman to remove her hijab and videographed it when she was visiting the historic Vellore Fort here earlier this week were arrested by the North Police here on Thursday, a senior police official said.
A 17-year old among the gang that coerced the unwilling woman to remove her hijab was sent to the government home, while the police arrested and remanded the others, Imran Basha, 22, Ashraf Basha, 20, Mohammed Faizal, 23, Santhosh, 23, Ibrahim Basha, 24, and Prasanth, 20.
“The youths were mostly autorickshaw drivers and they had targeted at least three hijab-wearing women who were visiting the fort,” the official said.
Refusing to reveal further details, Vellore District Superintendent of Police S Rajesh Kannan said the motive behind the offence that took place on March 27 was being investigated. “The public are requested not to share the videos posted on social media,” he said.
In the video that went viral, the perpetrators are heard asking the woman’s friend whether it was fair on his part to take a hijab-clad woman on an outing.
Following the incident, police presence at the 16th century fort has been strengthened and the Superintendent of Police has set up an assistance booth for visitors to the monument.
“This police assistance booth will be made permanent. Phone numbers of police officials will be prominently displayed at the booth for the benefit of the public, to contact in case of any emergency,” Mr Kannan said, speaking to reporters.
Additional police personnel have been deployed at the fort to prevent any untoward incidents and to ensure the safety of tourists, he added.
Asked about the motive behind the incident, Mr Kannan said, “It will be known during investigation and will be mentioned in the charge sheet.”
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