‘Unwarranted comments’: India rejects UN criticism of violence against women
The UN in India had expressed concern over the cases of sexual violence against women and said it is essential for Indian authorities to bring perpetrators to justice expeditiously.
India on Monday rejected the United Nations’ criticism of cases of sexual violence against women and girls, particularly those from disadvantaged social groups, saying the world body should avoid unnecessary comments while investigations are underway.
The UN in India had expressed concern over the cases of sexual violence against women and said it is essential for Indian authorities to bring perpetrators to justice expeditiously. It had specifically referred to the recent cases of alleged rape and murder in Hathras and Balarampur in a statement.
Responding to the statement, external affairs ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said, “Some unwarranted comments have been made by the UN resident coordinator regarding some recent cases of violence against women. The UN resident coordinator in India should be aware that these cases have been taken extremely seriously by the government.”
“Since the investigation process is still underway, any unnecessary comments by an external agency are best avoided. The Constitution guarantees equality to all citizens of India. As a democracy, we have a time-tested record of providing justice to all sections of our society,” Srivastava added.
In its statement, the UN in India had said, “The recent cases of alleged rape and murder in Hathras and Balarampur are another reminder that despite the impressive progress made on a number of social indicators, women and girls from disadvantaged social groups face additional vulnerabilities and are at greater risk of gender-based violence.”
It added, “The steps being taken by the Government of India to strengthen safety measures for women and girls are welcome and urgent. We support the Prime Minister’s call for strict action against the culprits. Entrenched social norms and behaviour of men and boys that lead to gender-based violence must be addressed.”
A 19-year-old woman was allegedly raped at a village in Hathras by four men on September 14. She later succumbed to her injuries and her family accused the police of forcing them to conduct the last rites in the dead of the night.
Another 22-year-old woman died in Balrampur district after allegedly being raped by two men.