So the Indian Air Force recruit Anjali Gupta has hanged herself at a friend’s place in Bhopal. She faced some” serious” allegations…According to an Outlook report form 2005 “The seven rather trivial charges against Anjali were:
- Obtaining road transport allowance of Rs 1,080 with a false statement.
- Claimed train fare for travel on Bangalore-Delhi Rajadhani Express when she actually used service aircraft.
- Falsely claiming road transport allowance for July 7, ’04, from the Aircraft Systems and Testing Establishment to Headquarters Training command. Posted to training command only in May ’05.
- Chucking the breakfast parcel of a senior officer.
- Not reporting for physical training.
- Not reporting for ordered duty on four days.
- Failing to report for duty on another occasion.
“Daughter of a schoolteacher mother and a bank officer father, 29-year-old Gupta is the second of three sisters” reported the Telegraph in its 2005 coverage of the story. Her profile does not really look like a set up for a criminal master mind. The charges against her look somewhat similar to Kejriwal charges…amazing how the senior government officers think alike. While the charges that Anjali Gupta had against the IAF were anything but trivial – including being asked to accept bribes for 3rd anf 4th grade level postings in the IAF. and the charges of sexual harassment by ” Squadron Leader R S Choudhary, Wing Commander V C Cyriac and Commodore A Chopra”. Nine months after she filed her charges, the IAF initiated an inquiry against her. The court proceedings and its findings under its woman headed commission came after 1 week of isolated house arrest of Flying Officer A Gupta. While all of Flying Officer Gupta’s charges against the men were summarily dismissed. that in the absence of any proof. The inquiry court convicted Anjali and was ready to strip her of all, – for the phenomenal and absolutely mind numbing crimes….what were they? …hmmmm let’s see…throwing her food at an officer, reporting late for duty, and cheating the Indian Air Force of a “1000” Rupees in travel allowance. oh no….calamity….ofcourse
Well, harassment of women at workplaces is not new in India, from RAW to IPS to Army…women are an easy target, particularly once the “system” is against them. The news stories of their victimization remain buried as city news briefs. The Rights under Article 21 of Right to life and liberty in the Constitution, the Supreme Court directives over the years, and the Indian Penal Code under sections 294 and 509 prohibit and identify sexual harassment and what it comprises of and the severity of its outcomes, along with the need for action and prevention… but that is for a system that is working to prevent and protect victims….not one that goes into over drive to create them!
The rights have even less meaning when when you are being court martialled! No need for a fight for rights over years …the jury of your seniors can decide in your absence! and the message sent out was clear as day to the women officers, if you want to survive, be subservient to the corrupt system and its men!
We keep governance simple here in Indian government, we don’t address the trouble sir jee ..only trouble makers…