New Delhi protesters defy government ban and continue rally against the rape

Riots Continue

New Delhi protesters defy government ban and continue rally against the rapeSunday, December 23rd, 2012. For the second day thousand of protesters have defied a government ban and are rallying against the rape of young women in their country.

When a 23 year old woman protestors are calling Damini, which in Hindu means “lightning”, was savagely raped on a moving bus last Sunday, she became one of over 600 women violated this year in New Delhi, India. She was so severely beaten that she remained in intensive care fighting for her life until yesterday. Six men, including the driver of the bus and one minor have been arrested by police.

Rape crimes throughout India are up over 875% in the last 40 years. In 1971 there were a reported 2487 cases of rape. In 2011 the cased numbered 24,206.

In New Delhi police are suppressing protestors using water cannons and bamboo batons. To date, 35 protestors have been injured and 40 policemen.

The riots are continuing throughout the country. In India’s remote northeastern state of Manipur, a video journalist was shot and killed. The journalist, Th. Nanao, was covering a protest against a separate case in the capital of Imphal. The woman was a local actress. Protestors had torched a vehicle and police opened fire killing Nanao.

The government has promised to take action to protect women, especially on public transportation, but will not commit to strengthening laws with severe punishment. Some lawmakers have suggested that rape be labeled a capital offense. Many of the protestors are asking for death by public hanging for the perpetrators.

James Turnage

News Correspondent-The Guardian Express