Union minister Santosh Gangwar: Rapes are unfortunate but can't be stopped pic.twitter.com/oUYyylrQ5U— EconomicTimes (@EconomicTimes) April 22, 2018
A few days after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi questioned “How can we tolerate this torture with our daughters?” while in London, a member of his own Bharatiya Janata Party has declared he couldn't care less about the rape and subsequent murder of an 8-year-old Muslim girl.
As India rages over the gang rape and murder of Asifa Bano, Minister of State for Finance Santosh Gangwar landed another blow to the bereaved Muslim community with his callous words.
"In such a huge country, if one or two such cases are reported, one should not make a big deal out of it," Gangwar told news agency ANI. "Such incidents are really unfortunate, but sometimes it is difficult to control these cases.”
Such cold, unfeeling words, especially for the Muslim community, coming from a member of the BJP are nothing new.
In 2016, it was revealed, Yogi Adityanath, an Indian monk and Hindu nationalist, also from the BJP, was involved in kidnapping and raping underage Muslim girls. In 2015, Adityanath’s followers urged Hindu men to exhume the corpses of Muslim women and rape them.
Horrific incidents of gang rape in BJP-controlled Uttar Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir have led to outrage in the entire country. The BJP leaders have been reportedly accused of being involved in a long line of murder and sexual assault of children and women.
Over the past week, marches have been organized across various, calling for justice for Asifa. Academics and bureaucrats have also written to Modi urging him to take immediate action.
Gangwar’s statement came hours after the government pushed an executive order that introduced death penalty for those who rape children younger than 12 years old. However, that’s hardly enough.
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