New Delhi Student Is Gang Raped On A Bus For Hours & People Protest Just So Authorities Will Give A Damn

shutterstock_36348094New Delhi is reportedly in heated anger after a 23-year-old student was subjected to an hours-long gang rape on a bus. The young woman was beaten nearly to death, causing Indian women and men to take to the streets demanding that the authorities recognize what has long been a persistent and ignored violation to women and girls in the region.

National Post reports that there is “outrage and anger across the country” as women have protested all the way to Parliament:

Thousands of demonstrators clogged the streets in front of New Delhi’s police headquarters, protested near Parliament and rallied outside a major university. Angry university students set up roadblocks across the city, causing massive traffic jams.

Hundreds rallied outside the home of the city’s top elected official before police dispersed them with water cannons, a move that earned further condemnation from opposition leaders, who accused the government of being insensitive.

The protesters have reportedly called for quicker and harsher punishment for rapists, including the death penalty. Some expressed simply that authorities recognize the pain and devastation of these crimes:

“We want to jolt people awake from the cozy comfort of their cars. We want people to feel the pain of what women go through every day,” said Aditi Roy, a Delhi University student.

The 23-year-old rape victim who triggered the protests is in critical condition with severe injuries. So far, four men have been arrested but two others remain at large. Head of the ruling Congress Party, Sonia Gandhi, has visited the student and promised “swift action” against the rapists. She had also called for police to receive better training on handling crimes against women:

“It is a matter of shame that these incidents recur with painful regularity and that our daughters, sisters and mothers are unsafe in our capital city,” she wrote in a letter to Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit.

But as protests continued all across India, two other girls were reportedly gang raped, one of whom was murdered. Police superintendent Ajit Kumar Satyarthi said that the body of a 10-year-old was found in a canal in Bihar state’s Saharsa district. In the Banka district of Bihar, a 14-year-old is in critical condition after being raped by four men.

No arrests have been made in either case, which is consistent with many of the rapes in India; it can reportedly take between 10 and 15 years for such a crime to reach the court system. But many instances of rape don’t even make it that far:

Rapes in India remain drastically underreported. In many cases, families do not report rapes due to the stigma that follows the victim and her family. In other instances, families may decide not to report a rape out of frustration with the long delays in court and harassment at the hands of the police. Police, themselves are reluctant to register cases of rape and domestic violence in order to keep down crime figures or to elicit a bribe from the victim.

“We have thousands of rape cases pending in different courts of the country. As a result, there is no fear of law,” says Ranjana Kumari, a sociologist and head of the New Delhi-based Center for Social Research.

Sushil Kumar Shinde, Home Minister, says that the Indian government has brought forth bills to make punishments for rapists more severe. However, those pieces of legislation usually come to a standstill in Parliament.

In the wake of this particular 23-year-old victim, lawmakers of multiple party affiliations have demanded that a plan for protecting women come to fruition. Shinde has also ordered for increased police protection in the streets at night.

But that’s only part of the problem.

(photo: Gemenacom / Shutterstock)

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  • Renee Pearman

    Protests are a few centuries late. “…there’s no fear of the law.” Really? Do a few castrations in the public square and see what happens. Maybe throw in a few officials from the local police up to and including members of Parliament.

    • meteor_echo

      Castrations? Make it beheadings. Death penalty for rape sounds juuust fine for me.

    • Ordinaryperson

      Do you guys get the irony of promoting violence to fight violence? I’d bet that countries with lower rape rates have them less because of their strict laws, and more because their societies have more gender equality, respect for women, etc. And I get that stricter laws would be a reflection of that, but it takes more than words on paper to shift a culture away from treating women as second class citizens.

    • meteor_echo

      Okay, let me ask you a simple question: have YOU been raped? Unless you have, you only have a tacit view of what rape and its consequences really are. Also – less already existing rapists would be a very, very good thing. Maybe less people would ever think of raping someone. And maybe more victims would report if the punishment were stricter.

    • Dlee

      Speaking as someone who has been sexually assaulted, I still don’t support violence to fight violence so please don’t play that card and imply that only those who haven’t had such horrible things happen to them would have that view.

    • Ordinaryperson

      I’m sorry, this response has been bugging me for awhile… I just wanted to address your simple question by saying that, in fact, it is not a simple question. It is a very personal and complex question, and also a very rude question. You’re rude.

    • hta

      Lower rape rates means fewer rapes are reported, not necessarily that fewer rapes occurred. Actually, countries with lower rape rates tend to be the countries with the highest actual incidents of rape If you look at the “rankings” of reported rapes you’ll quickly see trends around which countries rank where. The countries with the lowest reported incidents of rape are mainly countries where women are oppressed in areas of education, religion and social freedoms. The societies that have the fewest actual incidents of rape are chiefly smallish tribal societies that have a matriarchal or polyamorous social structure.

    • jessica


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