Campaign protesting violence against women to continue

New Delhi, Jan 2: Protesting the brutal rape and death of a 16-year-old girl in Kolkata, the One-Billion Rising (OBR) campaign Thursday organised a candlelight march here as it announced its intention to continue its fight against the mindless violence faced by women and girls.

The march was held at Chittaranjan Park in south Delhi in collaboration with the Purbashree Mahila Samiti of the area in a bid to unite everyone in the fight for women’s right to safety and justice.

“As Indians, we are ashamed of this ongoing violence by Indian men on Indian women and are rising on the second day of the New Year to continue our protest against violence,” said Kamla Bhasin, South Asia coordinator for the One Billion Rising Campaign.

Meenu Vadera from the Azad Foundation, an organisation that works for the livelihood and dignity of women, said that the most important challenge facing women is to redefine public spaces by breaking the boundaries that deny them their rights.

“Violence against women – at home, in communities and public spaces – is a means to continue the control over women’s lives and their bodies. This denies them opportunities to live a dignified life, to exercise their own choices, and also their freedom,” she said.

The event saw a performance by singer Parvathy Baul who also expressed her solidarity with the campaign.

It was supported by various civil society and women’s organisations of Delhi along with students of Delhi University and Jamia Millia Islamia.

Speaking about the event, Gopa Basu, executive member of Purbashree Mahila Samiti, said that the main reason for hosting it is to “break the silence on the incidences of violence rampant among middle class and educated women”.

“Such events will not only make women aware that they are not alone in their distress and give them the courage to speak up, but also convey to the perpetrators that we are no longer willing to take it lying down,” she said.

“We will get together and fight such injustice,” she added.

IANS