India outraged over brutal rape in capital

Just two weeks before Christmas, a young couple was returning from the theater in New Delhi, the capital of India. On Dec. 16,  after boarding a lone bus which already had six occupants on board, the young woman and her male companion were brutally beaten and robbed, after which the six suspects sexually assaulted the female and left her on the side of the road, nude and helpless. The assault had occurred while the bus was still in motion.

This astounding treachery sparked a nation wide outrage of people of both sexes, all castes, and religions against women segregation. This also spurred mourning and sorrow throughout social media and numerous calls for action against the rapists to ensure that they were punished for their crimes. The 23-year-old female, Jyoti Singh Pandey, and her companion’s names were not provided at that time, however locals had named the girl “Damini” which refers to lightning in Hindi and a Bollywood film which depicts a lead female protagonist who was a victim to sexual assault. Several civilians carried out protests at the government to conduct capitol punishment for the rapists. This issue has also started controversies at the Indian government, claiming that they should execute drastic measures to ensure female security in India.

Women in India are usually encouraged not to wear summer shorts or skirts like in the US or other Western countries. In addition, the government has not been able to enable security for women.

Subsequently battling several hours and days for her life, “Damini” had been in a critical condition facing several organ failures, and injuries to her brain and body.  Just about two weeks later, she “peacefully passed away” and her cremated ashes were scattered in the Ganges river.

The five suspects are the driver, his brother, two mutual friends and a minor aged 17, who maybe looked upon as a juvenile. The adult suspects had difficulty hiring a lawyer as several advocates declined the offer for fear of media exposure and local protests endangering them. The 17 year old is detained and is due to be dealt with by a separate tribunal. Suspects were not expected to make any plea but are waiting the release of certain documents which have been termed classified.