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21-yr-old gangraped in Chandigarh: Where is the call for Bekhauf Azadi?

The Bekhauf Azadi March had reclaimed the Chandigarh streets on August 11 this year, demanding safety for women during night.

punjab Updated: Nov 22, 2017 16:13 IST
Ifrah Mufti
Ifrah Mufti
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
21-yr-old gangraped,Chandigarh gangrape,Bekhauf Azadi
“Sadkein bhi hamari, galiyan bhi hamari, raat bhi hamari, aur raat ke chand sitare bhi hamare...”— were the lines recited out loud during the march in Chandigarh. (HT File )

“Sadkein bhi hamari, galiyan bhi hamari, raat bhi hamari, aur raat ke chand sitare bhi hamare...” Remember these lines penned by the organisers of Bekhauf Azadi March? The same march that had reclaimed the city streets on August 11 this year, demanding safety for women during night. Remember the claims stating, “Members of this group will create a comprehensive action plan to make the city safer for women, present it to the authorities concerned, execute it on the ground and keep the public informed?”

The recent gangrape of a 21-year-old woman has, however, failed to evoke any action from this group.

‘We are not silent’

Meanwhile, one of the march organisers, Amy Singh, said, “We are not silent over the issue. It is our way of protest. We did not start the movement to take out rallies after every rape incident and we did not say that we will end the rape cases.” She added, “We are working on a module of workshops for the marginalised which may take months to build up and years to implement. The Bekhauf Azadi March was a beginning point.”

PU bodies mum too

Similarly, the student bodies of Panjab University (PU) including the National Students’ Union of India (NSUI), Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and Students for Society, despite having organised several open-house sessions regarding women freedom, have now gone silent.

In the poll-bound varsity, these were the student bodies that took up the issues of national importance including Varnika Kundu case, Gorakhpur children issue, rape incident on Independence Day, Dera case, or Gauri Lankesh’s killing.

ABVP state president Harmajot Singh Gill said, “We had planned a protest but an unfortunate death of one of our ABVP members held us back.” SFS spokesperson Harmandeep, said, “ I admit that this was our drawback that we did not raise this issue but we had been busy in working on our agenda.”

NSUI senior president Siya Minocha, said, “In those cases the investigation was unfair or there was room for bias. We are waiting for probe in this case.”

First Published: Nov 22, 2017 16:13 IST