Please Endorse: A statement condemning the incidents of sexual assault on women from North East India
If you are endorsing the statement below, please send your endorsement to email@example.com.
Public Statement condemning the recent incidents of sexual assault on women
from North East India
As women’s groups, child rights
groups, sexual rights groups, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer rights groups and other progressive groups, academicians and concerned individuals, we are shocked by the repeated incidents of sexual assault on women from the North East in the capital of India in recent months. The incident of rape of a 30-year-old woman in Dhaula Kuan on 23rd November has again pointed to the failure of the Delhi government to ensure safety of women and especially of women from the North East.
On 23rd November, 2010, a 30-year-old woman from Mizoram was coming back from her office and was picked up by four drunken men near Dhaula Kuan. She was gang-raped for over 40 minutes in a moving vehicle. When the woman was picked up, she was with a female friend who managed to escape and who informed the police immediately. Despite this, the police were unable to trace the vehicle. Due to thin police presence and virtually no patrolling, in an area that is known to be particularly unsafe for women, the accused had a free run. Around 2 pm, the rapists dumped the woman at Mongolpuri Industrial Estate.
This incident reminds us of another young woman from the North East in 2005 who was also picked up from Dhaula Kuan and gang raped. In fact, in the past six months itself numerous other incidents of sexual assault on women from North East have taken place. On May 26th, a 20-year-old woman from Manipur was beaten severely by a man in Munirka after she resisted attempted sexual assault by him. On August 29th, a Manipuri woman was molested by the manager of a restobar in L-Block, Connaught Place. On October 22nd, a 21-yr-old Jamia Millia Islamia student
from Arunachal Pradesh was molested by group of school students inside their south Delhi school. On October 25th, a 19-yr-old Naga woman was murdered by an IIT PhD scholar in Munirka.
These are not stand-alone incidents. Women from the North East face regular harassment and assault. Often it is assumed that they are ‘available’ and women of ‘loose character’. The sexual assaults on women from the North East are even justified by saying that they ‘asked for it’ because of the way they look and dress. As individuals and groups working on rights we strongly condemn such social attitudes which ‘blame the victim’. We also affirm the right of all women to dress, behave and live in a manner they desire, without their basic right to security being violated. We demand that the Delhi government take appropriate measures to address and curb sexual assault on women, and in particular women from the North East who have been particularly targeted in the recent past. We condemn the recent crime, the Delhi government and specially the Delhi Police for their failure to provide security for women as well as redressal when this security is breached. The
Delhi police must be more responsive or else its claims to make Delhi safe for women will be proved entirely hollow.
We demand the following actions to be taken by the Delhi government:
- The rapists involved in
the crime that took place on 23rd November must
immediately be arrested.
- The security measures in
and around Delhi and particularly in areas that are more unsafe for women
- More effective
mechanisms must be instituted to ensure the safety of women in Delhi,
especially women from the North East.
- The Delhi government
must issue guidelines to BPOs and other employers in order that they
increase security measures when women staff members are dropped to their
Nirantar – a Centre for
Gender and Education, New Delhi