M A I N   N E W S

Delhi’s shame
Public ire mounts: Protesters brave teargas, water cannons
Pitched battles at Raisina Hill; Metro stations near India Gate shut
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 22
Despite repeated appeals for calm, Delhi remained on the boil on Saturday. Demanding swift justice for the gang rape victim battling for her life in a city hospital, hundreds of protestors filled the area around Raisina Hill, the seat of power, forcing the police to use canes, tear gas and water cannons. At least 35 youths were injured.

The government moved in swiftly in an attempt to prevent the furious agitation from turning into a street trial. But its response was ironical: On the one hand the Delhi government promised to improve public transport, the Delhi Police late Saturday told the Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) to shut indefinitely the Metro stations near India Gate from Sunday to contain the protesters’ flow.

Around 1 pm, hundreds of men, women and even schoolchildren began to gather in front of the barricades at Raisina Hill, demanding to approach the gates of Parliament to demand answers from their elected leaders. After attempts to reason with the angry crowds failed, the police used water cannons to disperse them.

Within minutes, the protesters returned – angrier and larger in number. Several rounds of teargas shells and water cannons later, the police managed to push protesters back till Vijay Chowk. But that did not last long.

The defiant lot marched right back shouting ‘we want justice’ amid tear gas and a lathi charge.

Protesters hurled garbage and stones at the police and some police vehicles and buses were damaged. “We are no terrorists. We are students. What is wrong with the police? They are beating up girls”, said a protester.

Victim’s statement recorded

The 23-year-old gang rape victim has given a "fearless and bold" statement before a magistrate about the brutal assault on Sunday night and wants her tormentors to be swiftly brought to justice. "We are continuously in touch with her parents. She is stable and she got her statement recorded in the presence of a Sub-Divisional Magistrate. She has given a fearless and bold statement. It corroborates what her male friend has told us," Chhaya Sharma, Deputy Commissioner of Police, South, said.





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