Last Sunday night on 25th sept, a doctor in Chennai was going to work as she usually did. She called a cab to take her from her residence in Neelangarai in south Chennai, to the hospital where she works in Ambattur in north Chennai. But instead of dropping her to the specified destination, the Ola driver and two friends he picked up on the way tried to sexually assault her.
When the doctor boarded the cab, the Ola driver told her that he would take the ECR route as it had less security checks and the traffic situation would be better. The doctor could sense something wrong when the driver stopped the cab at VGP Peace Temple in south Chennai where two of his friends entered the cab and sat on either side of the woman. When she questioned the cab driver, he said they were his friends and will be dropped off on the way.
Fearing for her safety, the woman asked the cab driver to stop the car but he didn’t listen and started driving faster. The two men sitting next to her started assaulting the woman. When she cried for help and raised an alarm, a man in the car behind her cab noticed the commotion and started following them. He managed to block the cab on the road, and a crowd came to her rescue soon.
The cab driver, Marudhu, was arrested immediately and his accomplices, who had fled, were arrested later.
At a time when sexual assault has become a regular occurrence on Indian streets, it is heartening to see that, for once, bystanders didn’t shy away from helping someone under attack.