News / Asia

India Arrests 2 for Alleged Rape of Danish Tourist

Police officials escort an accused in the gang rape of a 51-year-old Danish tourist to produce him in court in New Delhi, India,  Jan. 16, 2014.
Police officials escort an accused in the gang rape of a 51-year-old Danish tourist to produce him in court in New Delhi, India, Jan. 16, 2014.
Michael LipinFrances Alonzo
Indian police announced that they have arrested two homeless men in connection with the alleged rape of a female Danish tourist in New Delhi, an incident that has drawn more criticism of India's record of dealing with violence against women.
 
New Delhi authorities said on Wednesday the suspects were caught in possession of some of the 51-year old Danish woman's belongings, including an iPod. They also released more details of the alleged assault, which happened a day earlier.
 
Police said the tourist was asking for directions back to her hotel when several men lured her to a secluded area near the New Delhi Railway Station, where they robbed and assaulted her at knife-point. The woman later returned to her hotel and told the staff what had happened.
 
She departed from India on Wednesday to return to Denmark, where officials said she has been receiving assistance from Danish authorities.
 
Foreign women assaulted
 
There has been a series assaults on foreign women in India in the past year.
 
Earlier this month, a Polish woman was raped by a taxi driver while traveling with her two-year-old daughter to New Delhi.
 
Last year, a female Swiss cyclist was gang-raped in central India, while a British woman said she was forced to jump out of her hotel room window to avoid a sexual attack in Agra, home of the Taj Mahal.
 
London-based rights group Amnesty International responded to the latest incident by saying India is not fulfilling its human rights obligations.
 
India's record criticized
 
Speaking to VOA on Wednesday, the head of Amnesty's women's rights program, Cristina Finch, said the government must do more to solve the problem of sexual violence against all women in India.
 
"There needs to be better training of the police force to deal with survivors, so that when women come in to report sexual violence, those cases are taken seriously, investigated, followed up and prosecuted," Finch said.
 
She also called on the international community to boost support for the work of India's women's rights activists.
 
"I don’t think that there is a magic bullet that would solve [the problem of violence against women], other than to say we should make sure that women are part of the solution," she said.
 
Mallika Dutt is the founder of Breakthrough, an Indian human rights organization that uses the arts and technology to challenge discrimination against women.
 
Indian activists' goals
 
In a recent interview with VOA, she said her group wants Indian police to register all sexual assault complaints filed by women.
 
"That is the first threshold that women really have to cross in India," Dutt said.
 
"We also have to make sure that when police are registering complaints of rape, they are treating the women coming in with respect," she said. "Because so often, women are dehumanized by the act of rape, and then face a dehumanization process from the entire legal system, starting with the Indian police. We really have got to change the mindsets at that level."
 
Dutt also called for Indian judges to quickly hand down appropriate sentences against perpetrators of sexual crimes.
 
She said her organization ultimately wants to bring about a culture change in India, with men "stepping up and taking responsibility" for what she called "incredibly prevalent violence" against women.
 
Officials take action
 
India's government adopted several measures last year in response to public outrage about high-profile rape cases, including the gang-rape and murder of a 23-year-old woman on a New Delhi bus in December 2012.
 
The Indian parliament passed a Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill that doubles the minimum prison term for rape causing death to 20 years. It also criminalizes voyeurism, stalking and acid attacks.
 
In other moves, Indian authorities launched an "I Respect Women" tourism campaign to reassure female travelers and introduced reforms aimed at encouraging women to report assaults.
 
Officials said 1,330 rapes were reported in and around New Delhi from January to October 2013, almost double the 706 cases reported for all of 2012.
 
Ravi Kant, head of the New Delhi-based Shakti Vahini rights group, recently told VOA that the perpetrators of such attacks believe they can get away with them.
 
Assessing authorities' effectiveness
 
One factor that contributes to that mindset, he said, is police ineptitude.
 
"Police have advisories and standing orders about how to take care of the victims, how to do medical investigations, and how to provide aid to the victims. But that doesn't happen," Kant said. "We have a police force which has neither the educational level or the competence to deal with such crimes."
 
However, Kant also said an Indian court's relatively fast conviction last September of four men involved in the December 2012 New Delhi gang-rape is a positive sign.
 
"At least the message has gone out that the law will take its own course, and there will be fear of the law among the perpetrators," he said.

Michael Lipin

Michael covers international news for VOA on the web, radio and TV, specializing in the Middle East and East Asia Pacific. Follow him on Twitter @Michael_Lipin

You May Like

Photogallery Pistorius Sentenced, Taken to Prison

Pistorius, convicted of culpable homicide in shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, will likely serve about 10 months of five-year sentence, before completing it under house arrest More

UN to Aid Central Africa in Polio Vaccinations

Synchronized vaccinations will be conducted after Cameroon reports a fifth case of the wild polio virus in its territory More

WHO: Ebola Vaccine May Be in Use by Jan.

WHO assistant director Dr. Marie Paule Kieny says clinical trials of Ebola vaccines are underway or planned in Europe, US and Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Charlie Chan from: China
January 16, 2014 10:26 PM
Indians, please, don't be so ridiculous, raping a 51 year old woman, can not you pay some money for visiting a prostitute rather than raping

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid