Stop attacks on witnesses & lawyers of India's 8-Year-Old Rape Victim from Kathua
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Witnesses and lawyers representing the 8-year-old Muslim girl who was gang-raped and murdered in Kathua, India, this year, are being attacked and intimidated, as the trial unfolds.
Despite the brutal nature of the crime committed by powerful men against an innocent child, some groups have politicized the case by presenting it falsely as a case against the Hindu community. They are running media trials, trolling, filing false cases, deflecting blame and holding rallies in support of the perpetrators and against the lawyers. Some of these rallies have been attended by ministers from the Prime Minister's ruling party.
They are even hounding the entire nomadic shepherd community of Bakarwals, that the little girl belonged to. Attempts were been made to physically prevent the charges against the accused rapists being filed in court and later to weaken the investigation by shifting it to the CBI.
Though an increasing number of rape cases are being reported in India every day, survivors of sexual violence struggle to get justice within the legal system. Between 2015 and 2016 alone there was an 82% spike in reported rapes of children. Another 133,000 rape cases were pending trial in the same year.
Please sign the petition and raise your voice to demand a fair and impartial trial in the Kathua case, so that the family of the 8-year-old gets justice. Insist that the Modi government take immediate action to stop the intimidation and to address the larger systemic problem of sexual violence within the country.
Ruchira, Tinku, Divya with the Apne Aap and Equality Now team
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