Over the last few days we have seen the nation erupt with anger and grief over the gang rape of 23 year old women in Delhi, and her subsequent death. The entire episode has been very closely captured by the media. Many people have said many things over the last few days. We present to you a collection of quotes from politicians, celebrities, doctors, social workers on the issue of rape, strict laws, capital punishment and more. We would like you to share with us your views about this incident, please leave a comment if you would like to contribute. You can click on the names to open the relevant news articles.
“Those who claim to be students... I can see many beautiful women among them... highly dented-painted... they’re giving interviews on TV, they’ve brought their children to show them the scenes”
"I withdraw those words which have hurt the sentiments of others. My intention was not to hurt and I apologise unconditionally to all the persons and all the cross-section of people in the society who got hurt by my utterance.”
"There should be maximum punishment to the rapists, death penalty or emasculation (chemical castration of the rapist). We also need to bring in changes in our education system to inculcate family values, remind the youth of our culture and respect for women.”
“The shifting was not done due to some political reasons. It was done for medical purposes. It was purely a medical decision take by the doctors. I am also sure that the doctors would have explored other option like the US, UK or Germany before settling for Singapore. They must have looked at travel time to these destinations before finalising the hospital."
"Those involved in gang-rape must be hanged, their cases must be heard speedily by the courts, the law must be made more stringent and there should be more social awareness.”
"It also looks like she had not had proper food for the past 10-12 days and she is very weak. We call it the grief effect.”
- Doctors at Deen Dayal UpadhyayHospital, Delhi, on the condition of victim’s mother post the passing away of the Delhi rape victim
"As a woman and mother, I understand how you feel. I appeal you to remain calm and help strengthen our collective resolve to fight the menace of violence against women.”
“My heart goes out to the family of the young girl and millions of young Indians, families who work, hope and pray for a better India. We as a nation must reflect on the events of the days gone by."
“Let this be a turning point in the history of the country.”
"The Centre will be requested to amend the laws to ensure the maximum punishment of death penalty and chemical castration for those responsible for rapes. The offence should also be made non-bailable.”
"I want to tell them and the nation that while she may have lost her battle for life, it is up to us all to ensure that her death will not have been in vain.”
"We have already seen the emotions and energies this incident has generated. These are perfectly understandable reactions from a young India and an India that genuinely desires change. It would be a true homage to her memory if we are able to channelize these emotions and energies into a constructive course of action.”
"I hope that the entire political class and civil society will set aside narrow sectional interests and agenda to help us all reach the end that we all desire making India a demonstrably better and safe place for women to live in."
"It is very easy to say that home minister should go to India Gate and talk. Tomorrow, if any other parties engage in demonstration, why shouldn't the home minister go there, why only with this? You answer me, tomorrow if Congress party people will demonstrate or tomorrow BJP will demonstrate. Tomorrow, Maoists will come here and demonstrate, why should the home minister go there?"
"Today, a major part of our collective soul has died and our voices can only helplessly express our anguish at what not just this brave girl has gone through, but what each and every rape victim goes through in our land."
“The whole country should hang its head in shame. It is a day of disgrace for all those who have been trying to gain political mileage by making rash and insensitive comments about rape.”
“A young life was lost to the brutality of a few. It is time we introspect why such a heinous crime has been happening. There is need to check this menace.”
“The culprits be hanged and the government should not accept any mercy petitions in such cases. If this can be done then this will be the only respect to that victim."
The girl, who had no relations with me, became my own daughter after this incident. She became the daughter of the entire country. I frequently think as to what was her fault. What crime did she commit? For what did she get punished? After analysing, I find that her only crime was that her body was that of a girl. She was born as a girl so she became the prey to the beast.”
“At the same time, let us resolve that this death will not be in vain. We will do everything possible to ensure that such an incident never happens again. I request everyone to maintain peace and calm and call upon the authorities to take all necessary steps to bring the perpetrators of this ghastly crime to justice.”
“In my opinion, such emotional outbursts will solve nothing. Anna Hazare's agitation and hunger strike lasted for 10-15 days. But has the corruption in the country gone down even by 01%? I believe it has not. Similarly, the hue and cry over the rape notwithstanding, the incidence of gang rape will not dip by even 0.1%. This agitation will fizzle out. We need scientific solutions, not emotional outbursts, to issues and problems.”
“We will not cry; we will not despair. We will remember, because to forget will be the biggest betrayal. This is our wake-up call and we resolve to reflect and analyse how every segment of society is, in part, responsible for this misogynistic mindset that regards women as objects. We demand a violence free society, accountability from the police and political class, firm investigation, fast track courts, speedy justice and certainty of conviction for the culprits.”
“We have seen the anti-dowry Act and the SC/ST Act being misused. Any new law which gives such harsh punishment would also be vulnerable to misuse.”
- Sube Singh, Khap leader from Haryana, opposing the demand for death penalty for rapists reasoning that strict laws against rape could be misused.
“The government will do good to all - farmers, workers, rape victims. This is the same Mamata Banerjee who went to South 24-Parganas and brought Champala Sardar to Writers' Buildings claiming she was raped. She takes up those hela fela girls. I told her if you want to bring some girls, bring some good ones. There is no better girl than you. We ask, didimoni what is your price? How much will you take for getting raped?"
“She belongs to a middle-class family. I cannot compensate the suffering that you are going through. I offered to help and provide any assistance needed to save her life. Her family is silent, suppressing their anger and despair and everybody is feeling their pain. I will never hesitate to bring about any changes in the system to improve the present scenario.”
"The pure intention was to save her. The whole nation was praying for her and everyone was hoping for the best. We could not have given hope. We wanted to save her."
“At a time when education is reaching all sections, the increase in such inhuman acts is alarming. There is a need to include harsh punishments in the law against such crimes.”
“This is the time for us to take up the issue of women’s and young girls’ safety everywhere, at public places, private spaces and even in our homes. The government, police and administrations at all levels need to be alert on this issue. We should check all our further actions and even check our past decisions with respect to the safety of the women.”
“While expressing my deepest condolences with the victim, I promise to take all measures to enhance the safety and security of women, making the State a better and safer place to live in.”
“There must be a lot of considerations as to why she was moved - political, social, and emotional - but medically, I think it is sad that we send people like her to other countries when there are facilities here. Shifting such a dangerously ill patient was incorrect. If she was my patient, I would not have shifted her.”
“A police constable died during the protests. Who killed him? Will the media decide it? Ramdev, Kejriwal must answer that why they gave a political angle to protests at the India Gate.”
“Indian youth have proved they are not just demographic statistics in economic models. They are a potent and fiery political force of change.”
“Youths gathered on the streets to demonstrate are passionate patriots. Their anger and the non-violent ways of demonstration shows that they have full faith in the country's democratic system and the Constitution.”
- Anna Hazare
“The gang rape in Delhi and its details are simply unmentionable... punish the culprits, with the most severe punishment ever .. But also let us introspect ! What is going wrong with our society, our people. Naari ke roop mein hum pooja karte hain - Durga, Kali, Lakshmi ki .. jo shraddha hum yahan pradaan karte hain, apne desh ki mahilaon pe kyun nahin karte.”
“I stand here nervous and scared as the father of a 17-year-old daughter.... Rape is not just a women's issue. It's about men who stop behaving like human beings and start behaving like animals.”
- Derek O’Brien, Trinamool Congress
“Wondering what interest is served by continuing anonymity of #DelhGangRape victim. Why not name & honour her as a real person w/own identity? Unless her parents object, she should be honoured & the revised anti-rape law named after her. She was a human being w/a name, not just a symbol.”
- The Wandering Mumbaikar