The CPI-Marxist-Leninist-backed AISA and several other organizations held a demonstration on Saturday at Jantar Mantar against the release of 11 prisoners by the Gujarat government in the Bilkis Bano case. .
Activists said the decision to release 11 inmates on “remission” on August 15 was a slap in the face against the country’s constitutional values and secular structures.
The protest was also attended by documentary filmmaker Gawhar Raza, who recited Faiz Ahmed Faiz’s Nasm “Chand Roz Aul”.
“From Katua to Unnao to Hasra to Gujarat the pattern is the same, rapists are protected by the government,” the All India Students Association (AISA) said in a statement.
Kavita Krishnan, national secretary of the All India Association for Progressive Women (AIPWA), said the prisoners’ early release was actually a reward for “heinous acts” and that was evident in their garlands.
“This was a signal to voters in Gujarat that the Gujarat government and BJP-RSS support rapists and murderers. I strongly believe in defeating ideology,” she said.
Veteran actor Shabana Azmi emphasized the need to combat the “fascist” onslaught and atrocities against women and other marginalized sections.
The event was also attended by several cultural groups who read poetry by Habib Jalib and Faiz Ahmad Faiz and sang folk and revolutionary songs.
Birkis Bano was 21 years old and five months pregnant when she was gang-raped in 2002 while fleeing the riots that followed the arson of the Godola train in Gujarat.
Among those killed was her three-year-old daughter.
(This article is not edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)