World News‎ > ‎

Bollywood pays homage to deceased Delhi gang rape victim, demands justice

posted 29 Dec 2012, 09:08 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 29 Dec 2012, 09:09 ]

The Bollywood fraternity gathers in India's glamour capital Mumbai to take part in a candlelight vigil in memory of the gang rape victim of New Delhi, who was brutally assaulted in a moving bus in the national capital.

MUMBAI, MAHARASHTRAINDIA (DECEMBER 29, 2012)  (ANI) - Hundreds representing the Bollywood fraternity converged at the Juhu Beach inIndia's glamour capital Mumbai on Saturday (December 29).

They took part in a candlelight vigil staged in memory of the gang rape victim of New Delhi, who was brutally assaulted in a moving bus in the national capital.

Among those who attended this memorial vigil were actors, lyricists and musicians fromIndia's famed Hindi film industry, which incidentally also produces movies reeked in violence, rape and assorted crimes.

The 23-year-old para-medical student, whose gang rape in New Delhi triggered violent nationwide protests, died of her injuries early this morning at a Singapore hospital.

Consequently, security measures were further beefed up in the heart of national capital to keep away the irate rallyists and protestors at bay, away from the powers-that-be.

The celebrities addressed the gathering while venting out their emotions over the incident that led the to nationwide protest against issues like rape and other crimes against women.

The young girl whose identity is yet to be disclosed, was severely beaten, raped and thrown out of a moving bus in New Delhi two weeks ago on December 16.

According to social activists, the attack has sparked an intense national debate for the first time about the treatment of women and attitudes towards sex crimes in a country where most rapes go unreported, many offenders go unpunished, and the wheels of justice turn slowly.

Commenting on the issue, Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone said that she hoped that these popular protests should lead to a major change in the country for the security of women.

"I think the sentiment that we all feel is not enough. It is something that we can all feel, but I think people get away very easily. And I think that is the problem. And I think people who have sick minds they think that they can get away with whatever they want. This is just one example, an unfortunate incident. But I am glad that the nation today has come together. It is not about me, it is not about the people who are here. It is about the nation that has come together. And hopefully this will lead to something much bigger," saidDeepika Padukone.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said he was deeply saddened by the death and described the emotions associated with her case as 'perfectly understandable reactions from a young India and an India that genuinely desires change'.

On her part, Chief Minister of Delhi state, Sheila Dikshit described the death of the victim as a 'shameful moment' for her.

While most people are demanding the death sentence for the rapists, acclaimed Bollywood singer Sonu Nigam felt that there should be such a severe punishment, which would make their lives hell as long as they live.

"This case is so dirty that as a man I feel so repulsive that somebody's thoughts would be so demented that he would mutilate the girl. Now of course in this case, the harshest of punishments should be given out. But I strongly feel that death sentence should not be given here. The offenders lives should be made hell for them as long as they live," said Sonu Nigam.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's government has been battling criticism that it was tone-deaf to the outcry and heavy handed in its response to the protests in the Indian capital.

The Singapore hospital had earlier mentioned that the woman had suffered 'significant brain injury' and was surviving against the odds.

She had already undergone three abdominal operations before being flown toSingapore.

Commentators and sociologists say the rape has tapped into a deep well of frustration that many Indians feel over what they see as weak governance and poor leadership on social and economic issues.

Many protesters have complained that Singh's government has done little to curb the abuse of women in the country of 1.2 billion. A global poll by the Thomson Reuters Foundation in June found that India was the worst place to be a woman because of high rates of infanticide, child marriage and slavery.