A 23-year-old Indian student who was gang-raped on a bus in New Delhi has died in a Singapore hospital. The victim had undergone three abdominal operations before arriving in Singapore, where her condition on Thursday was described as extremely critical. Media reports have said that her assailants beat her and inserted an iron rod into her body during the assault, resulting in severe organ damage. She had suffered a lung and abdominal infection, severe brain injury, and a heart attack.
Her sad death comes after weeks of protests in New Delhi where everyone, young, old, male and female have filled the streets calling for greater protection for women and girls in a country where the police don’t take crimes against women very seriously. The protests have been marked with violence and aggression by the police, at times water cannons, tear gas, and batons have been used against the protesters.
From The Daily Mail:
Doctors say a young Indian woman who was gang-raped and severely beaten on a bus in New Delhi has died at a hospital in Singapore.
A statement by Singapore’s Mount Elizabeth hospital where the 23-year-old victim was being treated said she ‘died peacefully’ early Saturday.
The horrific ordeal of the woman galvanized Indians, who have held almost daily demonstrations to demand greater protection from sexual violence, from groping to rape, that impacts thousands of women every day, but which often goes unreported.
The bravery and courage of this young woman will always be remembered. In India rape cases have jumped almost 875% over the past 40 years, with women being raped an average of every 20 minutes. From the New York Times:
“The emergence of women in public spaces, which is an absolutely essential part of social emancipation, is accompanied by growing threats to their safety and security,” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said in a speech on Thursday. “We must reflect on this problem, which occurs in all states and regions of our country, and which requires greater attention.”
Activists and lawyers in India have long said that the police are insensitive when dealing with crimes against women. The result, they say, is that many women do not report cases of sexual violence.
It’s obvious that things need to change drastically in India, and it’s tragic that it took the death of a medical student to draw attention to such a huge problem in the country. Some politicians in India have suggested the death penalty for rapists, while the minister of state for home affairs, RPN Singh, has stated that photographs, names and addresses of the rapists will be uploaded on the Delhi police website.