News / Asia

    Parents of India Rape Victim Decry Fashion Shoot that Evokes Attack

    Reuters

    An Indian fashion shoot depicting a woman being sexually assaulted on a bus has stirred memories of the fatal gang rape of a young woman in 2012, outraging the victim's parents and activists who have demanded action against the photographer.

    The December 2012 attack on the woman on the bus created upheaval in India, triggering days of protests over pervasive violence against women and raising questions about the place of women in the world's largest democracy.

    The woman, a 23-year-old physiotherapist, was lured onto an unlicensed bus in New Delhi and repeatedly raped and tortured by five men and a teenager. She later died of her injuries.

    Of the six accused of her rape and murder, one committed suicide in jail and four were sentenced to death. The teenager was remanded in a juvenile reform center.

    The pictures for the fashion spread were taken by Mumbai photographer Raj Shetye and posted this week on the photography site Behance.

    The series of pictures, called "The Wrong Turn", showed a young woman in different outfits, fending off a group of young men on a bus. The pictures have been removed from the site.

    The mother of the women killed in 2012 told Reuters Television the photographer was mocking her daughter and trying to hurt her parents.

    “It has once again brought us face-to-face with the incident and he has done it for his own publicity and to make money,” the mother said. “He has tried to hurt the sentiments of parents and has mocked a girl's struggle. He has no right to play with anyone's sentiments.”

    The woman's father said he would appeal to the courts to take action against Shetye.

    “They should be ashamed of it. What is he trying to show to the juveniles and youths of the nation? He should be punished. I will appeal the Supreme Court to punish him and the photo shoot should be banned,” he said.

    Under Indian law, the name of the victim or her relatives cannot to be published.

    Art or cheap publicity?

    Shetye was quoted on Buzzfeed news site as saying he was merely trying to depict the plight of Indian women and denied attempting to depict the exact scene of the Delhi gang rape.

    “But being a part of society and being a photographer, that topic moves me from inside,” he was quoted as saying. “I stay in a society where my mother, my girlfriend, my sister are out there and something like this can happen to them also.

    “Being a photographer, the only medium I can communicate in is photos. For me, its as simple as that. It's art.”

    Shetye was later unavailable for comment.

    Lawyer and women's rights activist Abha Singh accused Shetye of seeking cheap publicity by glamorizing rape.

    “The gang rape brought many people on the streets. It was such a horrific incident that cannot be justified. But if Mumbai's celebrity photographer makes a photo shoot and models enact that gruesome incident to make money, this is cheap publicity for a commercial venture,” said Singh.

    The Delhi gang rape forced the government to amend laws and put in place stricter punishments. It also brought greater public awareness about crime against women.

    The number of rapes in India rose 35.2 percent to 33,707 in 2013 compared with the previous year - with Delhi reporting 1,441 rapes in 2013, according to the National Crime Records Bureau.

    Police said the outcry over the 2012 case made women more willing to report rape. 

    You May Like

    Multimedia Obama Calls on Americans to Help the Families of Its War Dead

    In last Memorial Day of his presidency, Obama lays wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetery

    The Strife of the Party: Will Trump Permanently Alter Republicans?

    While billionaire mogul's no-holds-barred style, high-energy delivery are what rocketed him to nomination, they also have created rift between party elites and his supporters

    China's Education Reforms Spark Protest

    Beijing is putting a quota system in place to increase the number of students from poor regions attending universities

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora