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Kirron Kher “feels sad” for Chandigarh Gangrape victim but ‘victim shams’ her anyway

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While a shift is being seen in how we address issues regarding sexual assault and harassment globally, victim shaming does not fail to amuse us. The public discourse must focus on “no to rape” and “not to assault” rather than “how not to get raped”.

We live in a time where women get blamed for their rape or sexual assault. While bigoted men in a patriarchal society do not forget to remind women that it’s their duty to “not get raped”, our political representatives are not far from it too.

In the past too, we have heard insensitive comments from the politicians where they have asserted that “ladke hain, galtiya ho jaati hai” (Boys will be boys, they commit mistake sometimes). However, we can at least expect sensitive reactions from our women representatives who are able to understand the problems faced by women today. But, some of our women leaders don’t forget to prove us wrong.

Joining their league is Kirron Kher, BJP MP who blamed 22- year old victim for her gang rape. Kher referring to the Chandigarh gangrape case said, “I also want to say that she should have been careful. In fact, I want to tell all the women, do not board a rickshaw in which already three men are sitting.”

The horrifying incident Kher was referring to happened a few days back. In a shameful incident, the woman was raped in a moving auto rickshaw by three men who then dumped her. She was returning from her classes when this incident took place. She was then spotted by a passer-by who informed the police about it.

However, the point here is very simple. In a country of around 1.2 billion people, the majority of the population uses public transport. However, the tales of women facing harassment in the public transport are long. Why a woman even in the 21st century need to think twice before using a public transport? I do not get Kirron Kher’s logic behind this victim shaming veiled as an ‘Advice’.

Kher was quick enough to also point out flaws in the administration that do not have Women’s Commission for Chandigarh.

While a shift is being seen in how we address issues regarding sexual assault and harassment globally, victim shaming does not fail to amuse us. The public discourse must focus on “no to rape” and “not to assault” rather than “how not to get raped”.

For Kirron Kher to advice young women not to travel by rickshaw if you don’t want to get raped is just a way of considering the crime secondary. It is the responsibility of our representatives to contribute to dialogue pertaining to such crucial issues and give a direction to the discourse with progressive thoughts. If even they won’t understand the sensitivity of the event, who will?

 

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Jagdish Thakkar, PRO in Prime Minister’s Office dies, PM condoles death

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Jagadish Thakkar

“Extremely saddened by the demise of Shri Jagdish Thakkar, the PRO in the PMO,” tweeted Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

 

New Delhi| Public Relations Officer (PRO) in the prime minister’s office and senior journalist Jagdish Thakkar passed away here Monday.

Thakkar, 72, who was unwell for some time, passed away at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences here.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled his demise, saying he was a wonderful person who loved his work.

“Extremely saddened by the demise of Shri Jagdish Thakkar, the PRO in the PMO. Jagdishbhai was a veteran journalist and I had the pleasure of working with him for years, both in Gujarat and in Delhi. He was known for his simplicity and warm-hearted nature,” the PM tweeted.

He said several journalists would have regularly interacted with Jagdishbhai over the years. He had previously served with many chief ministers of Gujarat.

“We have lost a wonderful person, who loved his work and did it with utmost diligence. Condolences to his family and well-wishers,” Modi said.

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Bulandshahr violence: Court sent acccused armymen on 14 day judicial custody

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Bulandshahr

Lucknow | A local court on Sunday sent the accused army men in Bulandshar violence Jitendra Malik alias Jitu Fauji to a 14-day judicial custody.

Jitendra Malik allegedly involved in the killing of a police inspector during mob violence in Bulandshahr was arrested on Saturday night. “The Army handed over Jitendra Malik to UP STF team in Meerut yesterday late night,” IG STF Amitabh Yash told PTI here today.

On Monday, a mob of some 400 people rampaged through a village in Bulandshahr district apparently after cow carcasses were found in a jungle nearby. During the violence, Inspector Subodh Kumar Singh and a 20-year-old man died of gunshot wounds. Nine people have been arrested in connection with the violence. Earlier Army chief Gen Bipin Rawat said Saturday that full cooperation will be extended in the investigation of the incident

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Pakistan issues visas to 139 Indian pilgrims to visit Katas Raj dham

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Katas Raj dham

New Delhi | The Pakistan High Commission on Sunday said it has issued visas to 139 Indian pilgrims to visit Katas Raj Dham, the famous Shiva temple, in the country’s Punjab province.

Under the framework of a bilateral protocol on visits to religious shrines, Sikh and Hindu pilgrims from India visit Pakistan every year. Pakistani pilgrims also visit India every year under the protocol. “Another group of Indian pilgrims, comprising 139 people, have been issued visas by the Pakistan High Commission to visit Shree Katas Raj Dham in Chakwal district from December 9-15,” the Pakistan High Commission said.

Last month, Pakistan had granted visas to more than 3,800 Sikh pilgrims to visit the country. Some of the pilgrims had attended the ground-breaking ceremony of the Kartarpur corridor on November 28 in Narowal. The corridor will link the Darbar Sahib shrine in Kartarpur in Pakistan’s Punjab province to Dera Baba Nanak in Gurdaspur district in India.

Earlier this month, over 220 Indian pilgrims were granted visas to visit the famous Hindu temple, Shadani Darbar, in Sukkur.  Katas Raj is one of the holiest places for the Hindu community in Pakistan. The temples form a complex surrounding a pond named Katas — which is regarded as sacred by the devotees.

Pakistan’s High Commissioner Sohail Mahmood stated that the issuance of visas for yet another group of pilgrims from India was consistent with Government’s of Pakistan’s policy of promoting visits to religious shrines and was a reflection of its commitment to faithfully implement the 1974 Protocol, the High Commission said in a release. He said that Pakistan remained committed to providing all possible facilitation for the visiting pilgrims and strengthening people-to-people exchanges between the two countries.

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