Police Use Water Cannons On Women In India Protesting Rape

[The report of multiple rapes and hangings horrified millions, and throughout India angry protests by women were brutally suppressed by police.  The official response, dismissive of women’s rights, was clear; as The Daily Mail reported, “Three men have been arrested over the killings. Two policemen were held on suspicion of trying to cover up the crime…..Shortly after the incident, a lawmaker from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ruling party described rape as a social crime, saying ‘sometimes it’s right, sometimes it’s wrong.’  The controversial remarks came as political leaders of Uttar Pradesh – the state where the two cousins aged 12 and 14 were raped and hanged – faced criticism for failing to visit the scene.  Another regional politician from Modi’s party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said the crime of rape could only be considered to have been committed if it is reported to police.”  –Frontlines ed.]

Shannon Greenwood, ThinkProgress.org, June 3, 2014

Women protesting the rape and murder of two teenage girls are sprayed with water cannons by police in Lucknow, India on Monday.

Women protesting the rape and murder of two teenage girls are sprayed with water cannons by police in Lucknow, India on Monday.

The brutal gang-rape and murder of two teenage cousins in India last week has sparked a new wave of protests across the country as sexual violence and the government’s response returns to the spotlight.

The two girls, who went missing last Tuesday night after leaving their home in search of a place to find a place to relieve themselves, were found raped and hung from a mango tree in their village the following morning.

WEDNESDAY, MAY 28, 2014 IMAGE TAKEN FROM VIDEO, BEST QUALITY AVAILABLE, INDIA OUT The father of one of the victims reported the girls missing to authorities, but said it took more than 12 hours for police to begin their effort to find them — by then it was too late. Four suspects have since been arrested, two of whom are police officers.

Continue reading

The Case of Uttar Pradesh: Who Will Feed India in the Days to Come?

Survival instincts: Soni, 5, holding a lump of mud. Older children wait for the excavated moist mud to eat and the younger ones imitate them. Kamal Kishor/HT

[In April, the Wall Street Journal published an article, “With not enough food, children learn to eat mud” which revealed that “frail, malnourished children eating moist lumps of mud laced with silica—a raw material for glass sheets and soap—because they are not officially classified as poor and so ineligible for official help….in a village of eastern Uttar Pradesh (UP), under an unusually hot April sun, skinny, hungry children silently poked around on the dusty edges of a stone quarry in Ganne village…’It tastes like powdered gram, so we eat it,’ said Soni, 5, a listless girl with a protruding belly…..With most families reduced to one or two daily meals of boiled rice and salt—with a watery vegetable on a lucky day—the mud is a free but deadly option at the 20 stone quarries sustaining the poorest villagers….Eating the mud worsens malnutrition and disease, but these families are not eligible for subsidized food and other state programmes.” (see http://www.livemint.com/2010/04/04233240/With-not-enough-food-children.html).  The system’s structural crimes against the poor are further described below.–ed.]

By Devinder Sharma

18 September, 2010,  Ground Reality

Uttar Pradesh is the most populous State in the country, and is also the biggest producer of foodgrains. Land acquisitions will take away a third of the cultivable lands for non-farm use. Such huge diversion of farm lands will result in drastic cut in food production, and has threatening socio-political implications.

India is witnessing a thousand mutinies. Pitched battles are being fought across the country by poor farmers, who fear further marginalisation when their land is literally grabbed by the government and the industry. From Mangalore in Karnataka to Aligarh in Uttar Pradesh, from Singur in West Bengal to Mansa in Punjab, the rural countryside is literally on a boil. Large chunks of prime agricultural land are being diverted for non-agricultural purposes. Continue reading