Bengalureans hold peaceful candle light vigil against Rape Culture

Bengalureans hold peaceful candle light vigil against Rape Culture

Bengaluru: The charge sheet against the accused in the 8-year-old girl rape and murder case was filed last week, the entire nation woke up to this gruesome inhuman act. Media outlets across the world have minced no words to condemn this barbaric act.

Outraged by the heinous crime of abduction, rape, and murder of a minor Bakerwal girl and the turn of events in the corridors of power and the streets across the country Bengalureans were not far behind. Numbering around 500 they came from far and near for a peaceful candle light vigil seeking justice for Asifa. Young and old, students, professionals, religious, and homemakers assembled dressed in black holding placards at the War Memorial at the junction of Brigade Road in Bengaluru on Saturday April 14, 2018 from 7:00 to 8:00 PM. This was a very unique gathering in the sense that it was not a protest, march, or an agitation. This was a peaceful assembly.

Transcending all barriers of caste, religion, and status they all stood together for a cause. What was unique and rare about this event was that this was a non-political and non-religious gathering and people readily identified with the cause said Rajendra Agnel. He added that what was amazing was the discipline and decorum of the gathering. Who said that we Indians have no good public behavior? Hats off to all the participants who conveyed the message that It need not be only religion or politics that brings us Indians together. This was a humanitarian cause that united people.

Sajith Anthony said that the purpose of participating in this Candlelight vigil was not to blame any political party, religion, police, or the judiciary rather it was meant to draw the attention of the people to what is happening in our country today. This is more relevant today when the idea of India itself is at threat and if we as Indians rising above politics and religion do not come together and do something together today, tomorrow will be too late.

Brenda Adige, a social activist, said that this is the best of times for a few people and the worst of times for many people in the country today. The social fabric is stretched to the point of being torn apart by divisive forces. Women are insecure and crime against women and children are on the rise. What will deter the rapists and prevent the recurrence of such crimes against the innocent children and helpless women? Revolutionary changes are needed in the law and fast-track courts should speed up the delivery of justice and the criminals should be hanged in public. Only severe punishment will deter the future crimes against women. We should never live to see another Nirbhaya in India again, she added.

What drives these perverts to commit such crimes? asked Sonia a Communications Students from Dayanand Sagar College Bangalore who was covering the event as part of her project. We are at a loss and there are no easy answers. Is it the arrogance and immunity of power and ideology which somewhere conveys a wrong idea that might and domination can suppress and crush the weak and the helpless in society? We really do not know, said Akram Pasha who had travelled from Electronic City to participate in this Candlelight vigil. There is a slow but steady shift in our social perception and reaction to such crimes. Many people are beginning to sympathize with the perpetrators of the crime than the suffering victim. This is an unfortunate symptom of a society that is losing its moral values and moving towards a cultural rot, he added.

Even before our tears for Nirbhaya could dry, we hear of the Kathua incident and it is a shame that our great country is getting the monicker of the rape capital of the world. The purpose of this vigil was to sensitize the people about the crimes against humanity. Christian Community Coalition, Karnataka organized this event. We acknowledge and thank the Police and Election commission who granted timely permission to conduct this event. Special thanks to all the participants who succeeding in coming together and conveying the message of peace and solidarity.

For more information on this and related events call Advocate P M Mathew Co-Convenor Christian Community Coalition, Karnataka. Mob: 9481370158/9448225467