Furore over Shashi Tharoor’s comment on Delhi gang-rape victim’s anonymity

India News Bulletin Desk
Shashi Tharoor's comment on Delhi gang-rape victim's anonymity
Image: Wikimedia Commons (Flickr: WEF)

Minister of State for Human Resource Development, Shashi Tharoor called on the authorities to reveal the name of the Delhi gang-rape victim and honour her by naming the revised anti-rape law after her.

But Tharoor’s controversial comment has left many divided even as protest and outrage against the brutal incident continues.

While Congress party spokesman brushed Tharoor’s comment by saying it is his personal opinion, opposition party BJP termed the minister’s comment on social media site Twitter as a “needless diversion” from the main issue which is to make a strong law against rape.

On January 1, Tharoor wrote on Twitter: “Wondering what interest is served by continuing anonymity of the Delhi gang-rape victim. Why not name and honour her as a real person with own identity?”

He continued: “Unless her parents object, she should be honoured and the revised anti-rape law named after her. She was a human being with a name, not just a symbol.”

While Tharoor’s own party spokesman snubbed at the comment, many of Tharoor’s followers came out in full support of the minister.

Minhaz Merchant, a biographer said on Twitter: “As Shashi clearly said--if parents don't object. They seem to. Subject closed. Suggestion made in good faith.”

The family of the victim have also said that they have no objection to naming the new and tougher anti-rape law after her, according to reports.

There was division even within the Congress party with its General Secretary Digvijaya Singh saying a day later that Tharoor’s suggestion is worth considering.

Until now the name and identity of the 23-year-old medical student who died on December 29, after battling for life for 13 days. On Sunday, December 16, the student was brutally attacked by a gang of men who raped her, ruptured her intestine and threw her off the private bus in Delhi.

The incident has also caused widespread outrage on the streets of India with many women demanding safer environment for women in India. Thousands of women, including Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit took part in a rally on Wednesday in the capital city to protest against the gang rape and called for an end to physical assaults on women.

The police have arrested all five suspects with murder charges. But protests and rallies have continued in the capital and neighbouring areas for the last three weeks. 

Comments powered by Disqus