Eighty-year-old Kamlabai Mewade would like to meet the policemen who beat her up in her home on Friday . “They were younger than my grandsons. I want to ask them why they hit me,“ the Phanda Kala resident, nursing a fractured arm, told TOI on Saturday .Her husband, an 83-year-old, sat quietly next to her, his legs bandaged.A photograph of four-five cops beating Kamlabai in her courtyard, carried by a Hindi daily, has gone viral. She remembers police shouting, “Buddhi pathrav karva rahi hai, aag lagwa rahi hai (old woman, you are provoking stone pelting and torching of vehicles),“ as they barged into her home, lathis swinging. A few hundred metres away , police were under attack by a mob of farmers, sending jitters through the administration in Bhopal, barely 25km away .

“I was sitting in my house with my husband, sons and grandsons when police barged in. They accused me of hiding stone pelters inside my house. I denied, and said they were free to look around but they started beating me and my husband with sticks,“ she told TOI on Friday evening. Her husband, Shivnarain, said, “I was lying on my cot when the policemen entered our house. They started abusing and assaulting us despite our pleading that we were not rioters.“ Both their sons and four grandsons were also beaten up, the elderly couple says.

Kamlabai alleges that police fired four to five tear gas shells into her house. “Our house is on a farm behind Phanda petrol pump. Chased by police, some protesters ran through the courtyard of my house and into the farms behind us, but neither I nor any member of my family was pelting stones at police. We were all sitting inside the house since we knew that the situation in the village was tense,“ Kamlabai said. Police took seven members of the Mewade family -including Kamlabai -to Khajuri police station. Her grandsons were arrested.

That wasn’t the end of her ordeal. On Saturday , Kamalabai and her son went to Dussehra Maidan to meet the CM and complain about the “police atrocities“. However, police turned them away . SP-North Arvind Saxena told TOI that he will investigate the complaint.