I feel the need to get this on the record: Four men charged in the brutal rape and murder of a 23-year-old woman in New Delhi last year have been convicted of all charges.
Our Yatra happened just after the terrible events, and we were able to watch from within India as young women, young men and many others reacted strongly, vividly and angrily to the woman’s attack and here days-long struggle to survive.
It led most of the newspapers we picked up throughout our trip. TV news covered any number of protests.
After we returned, Bobbie discussed her thoughts on the subject a few months back.
Today, there is some degree of closure. But now the difficult work of bringing about lasting societal change has to continue.
Here is a little from the New York Times:
The last and most urgent question – whether any of them will receive the death penalty – will be answered Wednesday, when they are sentenced at a morning hearing. The family of the victim has demanded death sentences, and much of the public seemed to share their anger, flooding the streets last year to demand swift punishment in the case. The police here were braced for aftershocks that might follow the sentencing.
The crime stood out for its horror, even in this sprawling and chaotic city.
After the verdict, a group of protesters outside chanted, “Hang the rapists! Hang the rapists! Hang the juvenile! Hang the juvenile!” Five men were wearing black hoods, with hangman’s nooses around their necks. “I just want them to be hanged because there is no other way to stop it,” said Vikas Tyagi, 31, who was with the group. “We are the youth of India, and we are her voice.”
It remains to be seen whether this case is a true turning point in the treatment of women in India; I’ve heard reports today that more women are coming forward to report assaults, but many — thousands, more? — aren’t.
I’ll just close by quoting Bobbie from her earlier piece; “I decided to respond with hope and encouragement—in this new moment of equality in America—to my sisters in India, to look to the future, and know you are on the side of history.”
Posted by Steve