Badaun Gang-Rape: Water Cannons Used on BJP Protesters Outside Akhilesh Yadav's Office

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New Delhi:  There was high drama outside the office of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav in Lucknow. Water cannons were used on hundreds of workers of the BJP, who were protesting over the increasing instances of crime against women in the state. In the last two weeks, three instances of rape have been reported from the state, including Badaun, where two teenagers were gang-raped and found hanging from a tree.

Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav today met Governor B L Joshi; sources said he apprised Mr Joshi of the action taken by the government in the Badaun gangrape that has sparked nation-wide outrage.
Following are the latest developments:
  1. The BJP stepped up its attack on the ruling Samajwadi Party this morning, by holding a gherao outside the Chief Minister's office. Hundreds of women workers of the BJP tried to march to the Mr Yadav's office, but were prevented by the police who have heavily barricaded the area. (See Pics)
  2. The BJP, raising questions over the role of police in gang-rape and murder of two sisters in Badaun and rape cases in Azamgarh and Etawah, has demanded that First Information Reports or FIRs should be lodged against police officers right from Inspector General to outpost in charge.
  3. With the protesters refusing to disperse, the police resorted to using water cannons on them. "We're not going to sleep, we'll be here, they have to stop this (violence against women)," one protester said.
  4. Meanwhile, Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan, along with his son Chirag, today visited Badaun to meet the family members of the two girls. He is the latest in a line of political heavyweights who have visited the tiny village in Badaun after the case grabbed national attention.
  5. "It is sad that the UP CM has not come even for a visit. He is either scared or he does not care," Mr Paswan said, slamming Akhilesh Yadav. The visit of Consumer Affairs Minister Mr Paswan, a Dalit leader, is the first by any union minister to the village of the victims.
  6. His son Chirag said, "A few days ago, (SP chief) Mulayam Singh Yadav said, 'Ladko say galti ho jati hai (Boys sometimes make mistakes).' Don't the boys in UP get encouraged by such statements"?
  7. Yesterday, Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati had visited the family members of the victims and alleged that the Samajwadi Party was perpetrating "jungle raj" and there was attempt to put the case on the back burner. Her visit came a day after Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi visited the village.
  8. Local Samajwadi Party MP Dharmendra Yadav was the first from the ruling party to visit the village yesterday - five days after the incident - where he faced the anger of inconsolable parents who have alleged that the police did not take prompt action in the case because of their caste.
  9. The United Nations today in a statement condemned the gang-rape and murders in Badaun. "There should be justice for families of the two teenaged girls... Violence against women is a human rights issue, not a women's issue. Violence against women is preventable, not inevitable... The Badaun incident highlights the dangers women in India are exposed to due to lack of toilets," the statement said.
  10. The two teenaged cousins, aged 15 and 14, were gang-raped and killed on the night of May 27. Their bodies were found hanging from a tree the next day. Police had allegedly refused to register a first information report for hours. All five accused who had been identified are under arrest. Two are yet to be identified.




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