India in ‘dereliction of duty’ over rapes


GENEVA: Indian law enforcement and justice authorities have shirked their responsibility to fight sex attacks, a United Nations child rights watchdog said on Thursday (Friday in Manila), amid uproar over the horrific gang-rape and lynching of two girls.

“There has been a dereliction of duty in relation to rape cases,” said Benyam Mezmur, deputy chairman of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

India has been struggling to overcome its reputation for sexual violence since the fatal gang-rape of a student in New Delhi in December 2012, which sparked mass protests and drew inter–national condemnation of India’s treatment of women.

Public outrage was reignited last month by the deaths of two girls, aged 12 and 14, who were gang-raped and lynched in their impoverished village in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.

A string of other headline-making cases have piled pressure on the authorities.

The UN committee is made of up 18 independent experts who monitor the implementation of international children’s rights treaties.

The panel held a hearing with Indian officials earlier this month.

In its conclusions on that session, released on Thursday, it said it was alarmed by “wide–spread violence, abuse, including sexual abuse, and neglect of children.”



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