Indian students and alumni based in the UK have delivered a letter for Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the Indian High Commission in London asking him to take “extraordinary measures” to ensure justice in rape cases reported from different states in India. The National Indian Students and Alumni Union (NISAU) UK, together with 19 India-related societies at leading UK universities, submitted the letter dated April 14 ahead of the Indian PM’s four-day visit to the UK on Tuesday.
It urges the Indian government to take “extraordinary measures” in the horrific rape cases that have been reported in Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh and more recently in Gujarat. “Hon Prime Minister, extraordinary times demand extraordinary measures. You have not shied away from taking difficult decisions in the past, such as with demonetisation. Please take similar extraordinary steps to prove that India’s daughters matter,” the letter reads.
“We demand that you set a true example and prove that the current Indian government does care about the wellbeing and dignity of its children, women, and citizens at large. “By taking swift and strict action, please show that the Indian government’s initial silence and delayed response to these horrific crimes against humanity are not a support of the accused because the accused have some or the other link with those in power,” it adds.
The letter refers to the brutal rape and murder of an eight-year-old girl in Kathua, Jammu and Kashmir, the case of a young woman in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh, who attempted suicide outside the home of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, and a recently reported rape and murder of an 11-year-old in Gujarat.
The NISAU UK expressed a sense of great distress and horror over these crimes of a “heinous nature” and urged Modi to make an announcement on the issue when he addresses the diaspora at the Bharat Ki Baat, Sabke Saath event in London on Wednesday, during which he will address questions from around the world in a live global telecast.
“We hope that by the time you arrive [in the UK], you have sufficiently addressed these matters and implemented law and order such that justice and humanity can reign supreme. That when you arrive and address #BharatKiBaatSabkeSaath, you can tell us and the world what those extraordinary measures are that you are putting into place to show that enough is enough,” the letter adds.
The University of Oxford India Society, London School of Economics India Society, University College London Indian Society, Imperial College London Indian Society and University of Birmingham Bharat Parivar are among the 19 signatories of the letter alongside NISAU UK, one of the UK’s largest Indian student organisations