Indian parties let rape accused run for office: Study

By AFP
Published: December 21, 2012

In this photograph taken on December 16, 2012, Indian activists listen a speech outside Delhi's chief minister residence during a protest in New Delhi, following the gang-rape of a student on December 16. PHOTO: AFP

NEW DELHI: At least 20 men accused of raping women ran in Indian elections in the last five years, according to a think-tank report published amid growing outrage over the gang-rape of a student on a bus.

The Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) study was released on Thursday as political parties lined up to condemn the rape of the 23-year-old woman, which has triggered widespread protests against how women are treated in India.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the ruling Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi and opposition lawmakers have condemned the savage assault last Sunday but the ADR said many Indian parties fielded candidates who were facing rape accusations.

“Since 2007, political parties gave tickets to 20 rape accused to fight in state elections. This is shocking and requires urgent action,” Jagdeep Chhokar, the founder of ADR, said.

“The politicians who come out to condemn rape are the ones who are openly giving the rape accused a chance to fight elections. This is hypocrisy,” he told AFP.

The report stated that political parties had also given tickets to 260 men who were charged with other crimes against women, including molestation.

It did not record how many of the accused candidates had been found guilty.

“Political parties should stop giving tickets to candidates with criminal backgrounds and all those lawmakers who are accused in rape cases should be thrown out of power,” Chhokar added.

Further protests were held in New Delhi on Friday, with scores of female demonstrators marching to the president’s palace.

The rape victim was coerced onto the off-duty bus and raped by six men before being thrown off the vehicle.

She was seriously injured and remains in intensive care.

Five people, including the bus driver, have so far been arrested.

Reader Comments (25)

  • Dec 21, 2012 - 2:36PM

    But how is that possible. I thought all good people are on that side of the border and God forsaken bad people are on this side of the border (or at least that’s what Indian commenters here keep reminding us of)?

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  • Straight Forward
    Dec 21, 2012 - 3:47PM

    Let us condemn what is condemnable and not talk of the borders. Individuals commiting such crime need to be given exemplary punishment…end of the story…

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  • Indian
    Dec 21, 2012 - 4:23PM

    @Falcon:
    Your peanut-sized brain will not let you believe that there are good and bad people everywhere. However, there is a BIG difference between India and Pakistan. While in India, people can and do demonstrate against the malaise in society and lead protests against their government — or even religious parties (of whichever faith) — Pakistanis do not have this luxury. Just look at the treatment of minority girls (Hindus and Christians, in particular) in Pakistan. They are abducted and forcibly converted into Islam and then married away to men who are four times their age. And let’s not forget the fate of that brave girl called Malala who was fired by a heartless savage simply because she wanted to attend school. Do you have any protests against such atrocities? That is the reason why religious extremism and widespread terrorism are rampant in Pakistan. India has crime rate but there is a machinery that is invoked to bring the perpetrators of a crime to book. That is what is happening in this horrendous gang-rape case. In India, there is greater transparency; democracy is a way of life. Not so in Pakistan where it is merely a lip service. Your sarcasm is silly, at best, and at worst, it is a reflection of a retarded mental state.

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  • Super Star
    Dec 21, 2012 - 4:26PM

    @Falcon

    Friend its not about Good and bad. Good and Bad people are on both sides of the border. Replace the word “good people”with “secular people” and “God forsaken bad people” with ” Islamomaniac”" and your comment true to a large extent I am afraid. BTW the term ” Islamomaniac” for Pakistanis has been coined by one of your very own , the jounalist Mr Paracha or NFP

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  • uk muslim
    Dec 21, 2012 - 4:32PM

    @Falcon
    this is the problem with extreme mindset like you. you need to educate yourself that there is nothing black or white. nobody claimed india is best. ‘yeh dharati hai insano’n ki, kuchh aur nahi’n insaan hai hum‘. but whenever some haiwaniyat appears, you need to recognise it, not ignore it but fight it.

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  • Bal Thakcray
    Dec 21, 2012 - 4:46PM

    No this is propaganda by Pakistanis, India is purest of the pure, no poverty, no communal killings, no hatred for neighbours & women are most safe there even baby girls, this is true India not the propaganda in this news :) By the way, can my Indian trolls enlighten me about New Delhi? Apart from capital of India what kind of capital it is known as? :)

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  • NAz
    Dec 21, 2012 - 4:48PM

    @Falcon:

    At least one gets raped on this side of the border…
    but on your side of border.. its mass rape .. like bangladesh liberation war….

    Well both are cheap acts…. but both require condemnation. We atleast file cases and book them and try n punish them…. but on your side… you need 4 male witnes.. who watched the RAPE……

    ha ha… why wil lsomeone sit and jsut watch a rape…

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  • Utkarsh
    Dec 21, 2012 - 5:27PM

    @Falcon:
    It’s true that there are a larger number of bad people on one particular side of the border, but no one ever claimed there are none on the other side.

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  • Dec 21, 2012 - 5:29PM

    So now a ghastly rape of a poor woman is used by Pakistani media to score political brownie points. I think this is below the belt kind of hit

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  • Yo!!
    Dec 21, 2012 - 5:35PM

    oops! rapists ruling the biggest democracy.haha dont blame the political leaders, you the citizens voted them for the parliament!

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  • B
    Dec 21, 2012 - 6:05PM

    @Falcon: Loved your ‘God forsaken bad people are on this side of the border’.

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  • Kosher Nostra
    Dec 21, 2012 - 7:45PM

    Funny how @Indian can throw insult on others and gets approved by ET censorship dept.

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  • Rani
    Dec 21, 2012 - 8:40PM

    @Bal Thakcray:
    Awesome comment, thumbs up to you!

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  • Butt
    Dec 21, 2012 - 9:05PM

    @Bal Thakcray:

    Nice to see Bal Tha crazy is alive!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Indian
    Dec 21, 2012 - 10:33PM

    @Kosher Nostra:

    It’s the same way as Falcon’s insulting sarcasm was allowed. You can’t let someone insult another culture and get away with it. The other part deserves the benefit of a response. It’s called freedom of expression, get it?

    @Bal Thakcray

    Why must you use the name of a dead person to say all the nasty (mostly untrue) things about India? You would earn my respect if you used your real Pakistani name to come out and criticize. It would open up a can of worms for you and your fellow mullahs, won’t it? By the way, the last name is spelt “Thackeray” not “Thakcray” (unless this is your way of being funny which it is not).
    Yes, it was a horrendous rape incident in which the poor victim has not only been traumatized but now continues to fight for dear life. The monstrous predators are in jail (thank God, for that) and India’s public is up in arms against the politicians and the police, urging them to crack down on the criminals and take preventive action. In fact, rape is as bad as terrorism and religious perverted extremism (which you probably proud of as Pakistanis because it’s your “gift” to the world). Indeed, many are calling for the severest punishment for these culprits — the corporal punishment — which is used rarely in India but was recently carried out to execute a Pakistani killer who sprayed bullets amongst defenseless men, women and children in Mumbai. I wonder what happens to the victims in Pakistan in such cases (not to mention the thousands of those who lose their lives because of suicide killers sent by your hate-breathing mullahs and their mobsters. Not to mention the killings and kidnappings of minorities, destruction of their temples and Churches, the rampant corruption and the ingrained mentality of the law and order organs that believe that the persecution of minorities is tolerable.

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  • Bal Thakcray
    Dec 21, 2012 - 11:41PM

    @Indian:
    Bulls eye, did it hurt you seeing me here? ;) anyway, why don’t you first ask your fellow Indians to stop impersonating as Pakistanis & bomb our websites with hatred ? :) secondly, truth hurts buddy, India has one of the highest rate of foeticide in the world! while you guys come on our website & tell us about women rights?! contradictory isn’t it ? ab rona na aur :)

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  • 1984
    Dec 22, 2012 - 12:53AM

    @Bal Thakcray:
    Just like foeticide…..India also has the highest number of heart attacks in the world,highest number of diabetics in the world,highest number of cancer patients etc etc….

    Its just because of the huge population that u get such bloated figures…

    Besides,India has many laws to protect women…for eg,honor killing is illegal,u cannot marry a girl under 18,dowry laws,u need not bring 4 pious men as witness to prove rape,a girl can drive,travel without a male family member,law against harrassment in offices..

    Its just that some of these laws are not implemented properly due to money and political clout…But the people are waking up as u can see in Jessica Lal case…Just look at the amount of protests all around India for this incident….Did Mukhtar Mai get such public support???

    I’m sure that in the near future,we would be able to remove all the weeds and make sure all these laws are implemented…

    I hope u too can try to improve ur country rather than thumping ur chests and pretending everything is alright in ur country

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  • gp65
    Dec 22, 2012 - 1:31AM

    The fundamental premise in this post is wrong. You can and should keep out rape convicts and in fact Indian law does not allow convicted people to contest elections. But you cannot and should not keep out people simply because they have been accused of a crime because that is a very slippery slope. It would be very easy for political opponents to file false charges to keep an opponent out. The solution to this issue is to reduce the long pendency in Indian courts – a problem that I believe we share with Pakistan.

    @Falcon: No one pretends that India is crime free. But ordinary Indian citizens, media, cvil society are engaged and hold parties responsible for corruption, for breakdown in law and order, or outright injustice etc. Indian media still talks about Babri destruction which happened 20 years back. In Pakistan in 2012 itself 3 churches were attacked, 100 Ahmadi graves desecrated, one temple vandalized and one razed to ground despite court stay order. All these news are no longer being discussed once they are out of 24 hour court cycle.

    It is not presence of terror or injustice in Pakistan which is surprising but the apathy to the problems. You will not find such apathy in India. Look at the response from ordinary civilians to the Delhi gang rape case in India and response to Sister Brigita being shot dead in Pakistan. Look at what happened in case of Mukhtar Mai vs. Jessica Lal.

    Oh and Hindus do not think that God forsakes those who do not believe what we do. In fact you can be a Hindu AND an atheist. You need to look closer home fto find those who believe that anyone who does not believe in the same God as they do will be forsaken by their God..

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  • Indian
    Dec 22, 2012 - 1:40AM

    @Bal Thakcray:

    Oh, I did not use a Pakistani name to conceal my true origin, unlike you who adopts the name of an Indian leader who just passed away. May be, I should call myself Mohammed Ali Jinnah who has risen from the grave to correct braindead people who cannot write but still want to vent their diatribes through these columns.

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  • Cynical
    Dec 22, 2012 - 3:28AM

    Using an incident of a rape, as an excuse for scoring a few brownie points; how low one can stoop? Plese, I beg you all, have some respect for the girl. She may be a hindu, but its not her fault. Please.

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  • Kosher Nostra
    Dec 22, 2012 - 11:03AM

    @Indian:
    I wasn’t talking to you. It was for ET.

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  • khan
    Dec 22, 2012 - 3:10PM

    1) wow, when its a bad news about indian, it suddenly becomes scoring “brownie points”, i would ask indian, what the heck are you guys doing on ET all day long, specifically picking news where you can find any room for spewing venom against Pakistan.

    @cynical, at least practice what you preach, and when children die due to drone strike stop calling them deserved collateral damage. they may live in a troubled area but its not their fault.

    @1984, please also use to mention india’s enormous population when glorifying scale of Indian economy. 100 people would definitely earn more then 10 people.

    @gp65, The whole civil society & media stood for Mukhtara Mai, Rimsha, and Malala, if not so, the world would not have known about them at all. As far your “Holier-than-thou” speech, the time will tell what happens to these rapist. if you at least managed to keep them out of your parliament, that will be considered your victory. Otherwise the usual trends tells that the mass murderer of Gujarati Muslims is up for PM-ship of India.

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  • Genesis
    Dec 22, 2012 - 9:58PM

    @khan:
    and deservedly so!

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  • Rajeev Nidumolu
    Dec 22, 2012 - 11:39PM

    In spite of brownie points are scored by partisans from both sides of the great divide, the essential fact remains there is not much difference in the record of the status of women in South Asia. No nation can progress where there is no respect for women who constitute half of the population .

    Poor countries like India and Pakistan can learn from ” Kerala model” of development which relies on education of the women to achieve social indicators and population control equal to advanced countries in the world http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kerala_model

    According to developmental economists Large swaths of Northern India are similar to Pakistan when the social indicators for women are taken into account.

    Are the misogynist prohibitions of Talban any different from the Klaps(Panchayats) of Haryana ?

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  • Ahmed
    Dec 23, 2012 - 2:48PM

    @Indian:
    well said brother kudos to you. These Pakistani pinheads will never understand India and it’s citizens. This protest for women rights all over India is one of the largest protest in the history of the world. Proud to be an Indian

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