A prominent LGBTI activist in India said a policeman slapped him in the face and accused him of ‘planning a sexual encounter’.
Abhishek Kar said a police officer followed him down a dimly lit alleyway in Kolkata on Monday (8 October).
Kar told the Indian Express that he had just dropped some friends off before walking down the alleyway.
‘The path was dimly-lit, but it was the shortest way to Nandan,’ Kar said.
‘Suddenly, three men on a bike stopped me. I presumed they were policemen as they were carrying walkie-talkies. Before I realised what was happening, one got down and slapped me… he started verbally abusing me and said I was on that dimly-lit lane for anal sex.’
Thankfully a passer-by called out to the police to stop what they were doing.
‘The policeman told them that good behaviour is only for normal people, not hijras (trans women),’ Kar said.
Not giving up
The human rights and development student then demanded they take him to the police station so he could file a complaint. The three officers promised a van was on its way, but then changed their story. They told Kar the van had broken down and they then left.
Not one to back down, Kar went to the local police station to file a complaint the next day.
‘The three cops were called to the police station that day. The same cop who had slapped me then threatened me in front of other officers,’ he said.
‘I will file a complaint with the state Human Rights Commission. As a citizen of India, how can I be treated this way?
‘I will do whatever it takes to see that the guilty cop is punished.’
Local police confirmed they are investigating the incident.
The assault on Kar comes just weeks after the Indian Supreme Court ruled that laws banning same-sex relations should be overturned. It was the most significant decision on the decriminalization of homosexuality in history.