Being falsely accused in any case is really traumatic, social ostracization and relentless character assassination of the falsely accused person further exacerbates his sufferings. One false accusation can ruin the life and career of an individual. To put things into perspective, one needs to remind themselves of a case which took place in 2014 in Rohtak, Haryana where two sisters had confronted three alleged molesters. Their video of bravely beating up the alleged molesters had gone viral on social media and the mainstream media also gave 24×7 coverage to the incident. Their so-called, ‘brave act’, attracted appreciations and congratulatory messages from all sections of the society. The boys were addressed with all sorts of abuses and labels like molesters, demons, potential rapists and what not. Later on, the whole case turned out to be false. Recently, the verdict of a sessions court in Rohtak has come out which has declared all the three accused- Kuldeep, Deepak and Mohit innocent. They have been declared innocent for a second time; a revision petition was filed against the lower court’s decision which had declared the three boys as innocents. According to a Swarajya report, first decision in the case came in March 2017. The boys were set free from all the charges levelled against them almost after a gap of two-and-a-half years of the first FIR filed in the case. The session court which announced its verdict in the case on 11 September 2018 upheld the decision of the lower court.
The entire episode has caused an irreparable damage to the lives of the three innocent boys involved. Speaking to Swarajya, the boys described the pains and ordeals endured by them. One of the accused, Kuldeep, emotionally said, “Our lives were turned upside down because of false cases filed against us. Media declared us guilty without any trial. Everyone looked at us as if we were some dreaded criminals. When the incident happened, media reported it non-stop for several days, refusing to hear our side. Some channels did report the truth later but it was already too late. We had cleared medical tests for selection in the army and had to write our exams. But after the media outrage, the army banned us from writing the exam.” Kuldeep was immediately arrested after the video surfaced on social media and had to spend four days in jail.
Kuldeep went on to add, “All three of us have faced extremely tough times in the last four years. We have been jobless, trying to make ends meet by working on our farms. If media had not blown this so much out of proportion, we would have been employed for four years now. Only we know the torture last four years have been. Media rushed to declare us guilty even when we were innocent but now when we have been declared innocent by law, no one wants to discuss our plight and hardships we faced.”
Deepak, another accused in the case, also described his pain and damage inflicted by this case on his career and life. He said, “I was pursuing Bachelor’s of arts. My parents were devastated after this episode and stopped me from pursuing my education. I couldn’t write my exams and had to hide it from my parents if I ever went to appear for them. It took me five years to complete a degree I could have completed in three years. I appeared and cleared initial rounds of army exam again but every time they say, clear the criminal cases and then come back. I don’t know what else we can do to clear our names. For several other exams, you cannot even appear if you have a criminal complaint against you so I haven’t even been able to apply. This case has shattered my dreams and hopes. These girls spoiled our lives, why can’t the media show this now.”
According to the Swarajya report the third accused Mohit is jobless since then.
Even after enduring so much ordeal and pain Kuldeep made only a small request. He said, “We have faced enough now. We don’t want to do anything especially against those girls. I have five sisters and I respect women a lot. I don’t want to cause any trouble to anyone or defame those girls. Our request is only to the media to declare us innocent in the public eye and the government to help us rebuild our lives.”
The mainstream media which had grabbed the opportunity to run a kangaroo court against the three innocent Rohtak boys has till date not even bothered to cover the verdict by the session court of Rohtak which has declared the ‘Rohtak boys’ as innocent.
This entire case is a cautionary tale for mainstream media and enthusiastic radical feminists to avoid from speaking and taking sides on sensitive issues, especially the ones which involve the life and reputation of an innocent individual. The media and society should apologize to these boys for ruining their life and career.
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