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Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

Last updated on: December 29, 2012 20:29 IST

Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

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The death of the 23-year-old Delhi gangrape victim on Saturday prompted peaceful protests and sharp reactions from political leaders and activists, with people from all walks of life joining in condolence meets and peace marches in Mumbai.

Republican Party of India chief Ramdas Athawale mourned the girl's death, and asked his party workers not to celebrate the new year. On December 31, RPI workers would hold a candle march from Colaba to Gateway of India here, he said.

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Image: A demonstrator shouts at police officers as she takes part in a demonstration to mourn the death of a rape victim who was assaulted in New Delhi, in Mumbai
Photographs: Vivek Prakash/Reuters

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Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

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"Words can't express my sorrow," Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee chief Manikrao Thakre said. "The real tribute to the brave girl would be to eradicate the menace of such inhuman behaviour from the society," he said.

Bharatiya Janata Party workers also held a condolence meet at Azad Maidan.

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Image: Demonstrators light candles and place placards in the sand during a protest rally in solidarity with a rape victim from New Delhi in Mumbai
Photographs: Vivek Prakash/Reuters

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Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

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Activists of the Aam Admi Party also held a peace march in Mumbai. "We are torn between abject misery of losing her, extreme anger at a system that failed to protect her and the guilt that somewhere we are responsible for the crime," a party spokesperson said.

Actress and activist Shabana Azmi, who walked in a silent protest march from Juhu beach to Kaifi Azmi Park, termed the death as a "clarion call", saying that "we cannot let the anger pass. It will be a greater betrayal. We have to do some soul searching".

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Image: Mumbaikars protest against the death of rape victim at Shivaji Park in Mumbai
Photographs: Sahil Salvi

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Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

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"We will channelise this grief, this anger, this guilt to make our country safer for her sisters. We dedicate ourselves to change the mindsets that allow such heinous behaviour to exist. We will protest relentlessly till such time that speedy justice systems are created for abuse victims and such strong punishments are meted out that they deter the inhuman creatures amongst us from even considering such crimes," she said.

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Image: A protester breaks down during a demonstration in Mumbai
Photographs: Sahil Salvi
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Mumbai unites in grief, anger over rape victim's death

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"We cannot let the anger pass. It will be a greater betrayal. We have to do some soul searching," she added.

At the protest march, actor-turned-politician Jaya Bachchan broke down. "Whatever action we took for the girl, we took it late. We must apologise to all victims," she said.


Image: Students join the protest against Delhi gangrape in Mumbai
Photographs: Sahil Salvi

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