In November 2014, a video of two sisters from Haryana beating the hell out of three "eve-teasers" in Rohtak was widely circulated on social media.
The girls were hailed as heroes for taking on the men in a Haryana Roadways bus and showering them with punches. The men even spent a day in jail. The viewers promptly dubbed them as "molesters" based on the testimony of the women alone.
Twenty-seven months later, a Rohtak court has discharged the men. This is after a six-month probe by the police found no evidence to put the three men on trial.
This video made the 'Rohtak sisters' famous
Two sisters, Aarti Kumar, 24, and Pooja Kumar, 21, from Sonepat were travelling on a Haryana Roadways bus on November 28, 2014 when they claimed that three men attempted to molest them. They girls fought them, with one of them even using her belt to hit him. The video shows other passengers stayed put in their seats through it all.
The girls were dubbed as 'Rohtak sisters' and shot to fame after the video went viral. On November 30, they lodged a complaint against the men - Mohit, Kuldeep and Deepak of Rohtak’s Assan village. The men were arrested and remanded in one-day judicial custody.
More videos of the sisters raised suspicions
Shortly after, a second video of the girls surfaced where they could be seen beating up men and hurling expletives at them in a park in Rohtak for apparently no reason. This made people wonder whether there is more to the bus incident than the "molestation" story.
In fact, the Haryana government that had decided to award the girls for bravery had held back the award after conflicting versions and controversial videos came to light.
Court gave the men a clean chit
As per this report, Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate Harish Goyal gave the men a clean chit because police found no evidence against them. As per the police, the bus passengers supported the three men and a polygraph test conducted on the men didn't indicate they were lying.
As per this Hindustan Times report, the police heard 40 witnesses who spoke in favour of the accused boys.
Thanks to the case, the men couldn't make it to the Army
As per this NDTV report, Kuldeep and Deepak wanted to join the Army and had cleared the medical and physical tests. But the case barred them from sitting for the written exam. Now, they are 24 and past the qualifying age of 23.
Kuldeep said that the argument on the fateful day happened after one of the sisters occupied the seat that was meant for an elderly lady.
The girls plan to move the High Court now
Aarti and Pooja, who are doing their post-graduation in Gurgaon, told NDTV they are shocked by the verdict and may appeal against the order in high court. They also blamed the media for first hailing them as heroes and later trashing them as bullies.