New gang-rape revelations stir anger in Delhi

Posted at 01/05/13 5:49 PM

NEW DELHI - Claims of police incompetence and public apathy stirred new anger in the Delhi gang-rape case on Saturday after the boyfriend of the victim recounted details of the savage attack for the first time.

The man was the only witness to the gang-rape of his girlfriend by six men on a moving bus on December 16 which has stirred sometimes violent protests against the treatment of women in Indian society and an apparent rise in sex crime.

Speaking to AFP and an Indian news channel, the boyfriend said passers-by ignored the naked and bloodied couple for 30 minutes after they were thrown out of the bus and police then wasted more time arguing over who had jurisdiction.

"The boy has just voiced what most of us had suspected all along," Amital Prasad, a 32-year-old sales officer in a private company, told AFP in New Delhi on Saturday.

"The police must come forward and answer his allegations. Police apathy is a sad truth that all of us have to deal with every day of our lives."

Kriti Pallav, a 33-year-old housewife, said the police were already to blame for failing to provide security in the capital, often referred to as the "rape capital of India."

She was incensed by news that the TV channel, Zee News, is to face prosecution.

It aired the interview with the boyfriend of the victim without obscuring his face, possibly revealing the identity of the victim, who is entitled to anonymity under Indian law.

"First of all, they are already at fault and now they want to harass the TV channel which tried to expose their high-handedness," she said.

The police were unavailable for comment when contacted by AFP on Saturday.

Abhinav Agarwal, a 31-year-old manager at a private company, said it was too easy to simply blame the police and that Indians had to reflect on their own apathy to the victims of crime.

"As people we should try and improve ourselves because the boy talked about how the people who were passing by did not try to help them," he said.

"More than the police, it is the public who should try to reflect and bring a change in their attitude," he said.