Delhi rape: PM talks action, peace
As protests sweep New Delhi over the gangrape and brutalization of a medical student on a moving bus, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday reassured action and made an emotional appeal for the second time to people to maintain peace in the wake of Sunday's protester-cop clashes that left more than 140 people, including nearly 80 policemen injured.
Speaking to the nation in televised message, Singh said: " As the father of three daughters myself, I feel as strongly about this as each one of you."
"My wife, my family and I are all joined in our concern for the young woman who was the victim of this heinous crime. We are constantly monitoring her medical condition. Let us all pray for her and her loved ones during this critical time," he said.
"I feel deeply sad at the turn of event leading to clashes between protesters and police forces," he said adding that though the anger was justified, violence would serve no purpose.
Singh assured that the government would take all measures to ensure the security and safety of women.
"I appeal to all sections of the society to maintain peace and help us in our efforts," he said.
While the national capital erupted in anger and violence over the brutal gangrape of the Delhi girl, the victim's father too has appealed for peace to everyone.
Speaking to some TV channels, the father of the girl, who is again put on ventilator at Safdarjung Hospital, said his daughter is a fighter and would survive the attack.
"My daughter is a fighter all her life. She is brave and she will survive the ordeal. Pray for her health," said the father of the girl, a 23-year-old medical student who was subjected to gruesome torture inside the bus on the night of Dec 16 when she was returning home after a film show with a male companion.
The girl's father also appealed for calm to the protesters who fought pitched battles for days with the Delhi Police with the protest turning violent on Sunday at the India Gate.
Doctors at Safdarjung Hospital, where she is being treated, said though the victim was conscious and responding to treatment, they were worried about the infection in her blood.
Following is the text of the PM's message on Dec 24, 2012.
My fellow citizens,
There is genuine and justified anger and anguish at the ghastly crime of gang rape committed last Sunday in Delhi. As a father of three daughters myself, I feel as strongly about this as each one of you. My wife, my family and I are all joined in our concern for the young woman who was the victim of this heinous crime. We are constantly monitoring her medical condition. Let us all pray for her and her loved ones during this critical time.
I also feel deeply sad at the turn of events leading to clashes between protesters and police forces. Anger at this crime is justified but violence will serve no purpose. I appeal to all concerned citizens to maintain peace and calm. I assure you that we will make all possible efforts to ensure security and safety of women in this country.
The Home Minister has already spoken about the steps being taken. We will examine without delay not only the responses to this terrible crime but also all aspects concerning the safety of women and children and punishment to those who commit these monstrous crimes. Our Government will keep you informed of the steps we are taking and the processes we are following.
I appeal to all sections of society to maintain peace and help us in our efforts.