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RAPE

Rapes in India has been described by Radha Kumar as one of India's most common crimes against women and by the UN’s human-rights chief as a “national problem”. In the 1980s, women's rights groups lobbied for marital rape to be declared unlawful, as until 1983, the criminal law (amendment) act stated that "sexual intercourse by a man with his own wife, the wife not being under fifteen years of age is not rape". Marital rape is now illegal in India but is still widespread.

While per-capita reported incidents are quite low compared to other countries, even developed countries, a new case is reported every 20 minutes. New Delhi has the highest rate of rape-reports among Indian cities. Sources show that rape cases in India have doubled between 1990 and 2008. According to the National Crime Records Bureau, 24,206 rape cases were registered in India in 2011, although experts agree that the number of unreported cases is much higher. Penal provisions for rape are often being misused by women as "weapon for vengeance and vendetta" to harass and blackmail their male friends by filing false cases to extort money and to force them get married, the Delhi High Court has said.

The 2012 Delhi Gang Rape Case involves a rape and murder that occurred on 16 December 2012 in Munirka, a neighbourhood located in the southern part of New Delhi, when a 23-year-old female physiotherapy intern was beaten and gang raped in a bus in which she was travelling with her male companion. There were only six others in the bus, including the driver, all of whom raped the woman. The woman died from her injuries thirteen days later while undergoing emergency treatment in Singapore.

The incident generated widespread national and international coverage and was condemned by various women's groups, both in India and abroad. Subsequently, public protests against the Government of India and the Government of Delhi for not providing adequate security for women took place in New Delhi, where thousands of protesters clashed with security forces. Similar protests took place in major cities throughout the country.

All the accused were arrested and charged with sexual assault and murder. The accused driver, Ram Singh, died in police custody on 11 March 2013 in the Tihar Jail. According to some published reports, the police say Ram Singh hanged himself, but defense lawyers and his family suspect he was murdered. The rest of the accused remain on trial in a fast-track court.







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