News / Asia

Indian PM Appeals for Calm After Gang Rape Protests Turn Violent

Indian women demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus scuffle with police as they try to approach the residence of Indian Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.
Indian women demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus scuffle with police as they try to approach the residence of Indian Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.
Anjana Pasricha
India's Prime Minister has appealed for calm following days of violent protests over the gang rape of a young woman in the Indian capital.

In a televised address Monday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said he shared people’s genuine anger and anguish. However, he said violence will serve no purpose. 

Singh was referring to clashes that took place between protestors and police in the Indian capital Saturday and Sunday.
 
“I appeal to all concerned citizens to maintain peace and calm. I assure you that we will make all possible efforts to ensure safety and security of women in this country," he promised, "we will examine without delay not only responses to this terrible crime, but all aspects concerning safety of women and children and punishment to those who commit these monstrous crimes.”

  • An Indian protester shouts slogans as he is stopped by police during a protest against a recent gang-rape of a young woman in a moving bus in New Delhi, India, December 27, 2012.
  • Indians protesting the recent gang-rape of a young woman in a moving bus in New Delhi, display a poster calling for death penalty for offenders at a rally in Kolkata, December 27, 2012.
  • Police stand near barricades as they prepare to stop protesters on their way to India Gate while demonstrating against the gang-rape of a young woman in a moving bus in New Delhi, India, December 27, 2012.
  • People participate in a candle light vigil for the recovery of the young victim of the recent brutal gang-rape in a bus in New Delhi, India, December 26, 2012.
  • A woman is removed by Indian police while protesting against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus in New Delhi, India, December 25, 2012.
  • Police and relatives carry the body of Subhash Tomar, a police man, during his funeral in New Delhi, December 25, 2012. Tomar died after he was injured during a protest over a gang rape in New Delhi.
  • Members of the All India Democratic Students Organization (DSO) hold placards and shout slogans condemning the brutal gang rape of a woman on a moving bus in New Delhi during a protest in Ahmadabad, India, December 24, 2012.
  • Indian police use water cannons to push back protesters during a demonstration near the India Gate against the gang rape and brutal beating of a 23-year-old student on a bus last week, in New Delhi, India, December 23, 2012.
  • An Indian man overwhelmed by tear gas lies on the ground during a protest in New Delhi, India, December 23, 2012.
  • A demonstrator holds a placard in front of India Gate as she takes part in a protest rally organized by various women's organisations in New Delhi, India, December 21, 2012.
  • People participate in a candlelight vigil for the fast recovery of a young woman as she fights for her life at a hospital after being brutally raped and tortured, in New Delhi, India, December 21, 2012.

The nearly hour-long rape and beating with iron rods of the 23-year-old female student by a group of men in a moving bus last week has sparked outrage against authorities and police in a city already considered the most unsafe for women. The victim remains hospitalized in critical condition.
 
The protestors - mostly students and ordinary people - want speedy justice handed out to the six men who have been arrested in connection with the gang rape. There have been calls for the death penalty. People want better security for women. They are angry that nearly one third of the city's police force is deployed for duty for ministers and senior government officials, reducing those available for actually policing the city.
    
The protests were smaller and sporadic on Monday, as the police turned the city into a virtual fortress to prevent violent demonstrations during a day-long visit by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Several metro stations were shut down to prevent people from reaching the heart of the capital - where the earlier protests sparked pitched battles with police, who used tear gas, sticks and water cannons to disperse the crowds. More than 60 protesters and policemen were injured.

An Indian woman, right, part of a group demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus, argues with police officers after they were prevented from protesting in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.An Indian woman, right, part of a group demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus, argues with police officers after they were prevented from protesting in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.
x
An Indian woman, right, part of a group demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus, argues with police officers after they were prevented from protesting in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.
An Indian woman, right, part of a group demonstrating against the brutal gang-rape of a woman on a moving bus, argues with police officers after they were prevented from protesting in New Delhi, India, Dec. 24, 2012.
Authorities have promised better policing, with more night patrols. They have also promised to fast-track the trial of those arrested for gang rape in a country where a slow-moving justice system means that trials often drag on for years.
 
Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said the government will consider handing out stiffer penalties for crimes against women. 

“It has been decided to constitute a committee to look into possible amendments so as to provide for speedier justice and enhanced punishment in cases of aggravated sexual assault,” Shinde announced.

But public anger is still running high and authorities will have to do more to assuage a city where, according to police figures, a rape is reported on an average every 18 hours.

Last week, Indian Home Secretary R.K. Singh announced a series of measures to prevent such violence.  He said bus drivers' licenses will be thoroughly checked, tinted or otherwise covered bus windows will be banned, and plainclothes police officers will be deployed on buses.  Authorities will also crack down on drunk driving and those who drink and loiter in New Delhi.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

US Urges Restraint in Hong Kong Protests

Protesters angered by Beijing's decision to only approve candidates that it sanctions for Hong Kong's leadership elections in 2017 More

Archive of Forgotten UCLA Speeches Offers Snapshot of History

Recordings of prominent voices in social change, politics, science and literature from 1960s, early 1970s now available on YouTube More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
 Previous    
by: prax26 from: USA
December 24, 2012 8:06 AM
Put them on trial, and when found guilty - execute them, publicly.
If only the United States would take this stance, there would be less violent rapes, and certainly less repeat offenders.


by: Cherry from: NYC
December 24, 2012 7:25 AM
India will end up being the world's largest matriarchal dictatorship -- no fair trials prior to execution! Huzzah.

Comments page of 2
 Previous    

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenyai
X
Gabe Joselow
September 29, 2014 6:20 PM
Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Video

Video Reconstruction? What Reconstruction? Life After War in Gaza

It’s been a month since Israel and the Palestinians agreed to a ceasefire to end 52 days of an air and tank war that left 60,000 homes in Gaza damaged or destroyed and 110,000 homeless. Sharon Behn reports that lack of reconstruction is leading to despair.
Video

Video US, Saudi Arabia and UAE Hit Islamic State's Oil Revenue

The United States, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have bombed oil facilities operated by Islamic State militants in Syria. It was a truly collaborative effort, with the two Arab countries dropping the majority of the bombs. The 12 refineries targeted were estimated to generate as much as $2 million per day for the terrorist group. VOA Pentagon correspondent Carla Babb has the story.
Video

Video Russia's Food Sanctions Raise Price Worries, Hopes for Domestic Production

Russia retaliated against Western sanctions imposed for its actions in Ukraine by halting food imports from the West. The temporary import ban on food from Australia, the European Union, Norway and North America has Russian consumers concerned that they could face a sharp increase in food prices. But in an ironic twist, the restrictions aimed at the Kremlin have made Russia's domestic food producers hopeful this can boost their business. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
Video

Video Washington to Pyongyang: 'Shut This Evil System Down'

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is calling on North Korea to shut down prison camps and other human rights abuses following a United Nations Commission of Inquiry into "widespread and systematic human rights violations." VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid