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Condemn the murder of Teresa Rai from Kalimpong and rape of Sikkim girl near Capital city of India - Gorkha students JNU

Condemn the murder of Teresa Rai from Mirik and rape of Sikkim girl near Capital city of India - Gorkha students JNU
The untimely death of 22 years old Teresa Rai from Kalimpong, Darjeeling under suspicious circumstances and the rape of 22-year-old girl from Sikkim in Gurgoan has deeply disturbed and enraged us. It has once again raised many questions on the lackadaisical approach shown by authorities in handling and investigating such cases. Young Teresawas working in a 5-starhotel in Delhi. According to her family, she had a positive take on her life and career. But her untimely death under suspicious circumstances was projected as case of suicide due to some issues with her partner Manu Gopalwho hails from Himachal Pradesh. Media too reported “allegedly committed suicide fearing that her live-in partner might refuse to marry her”. But the recent video of her dead body clearly shows burn marks in her feet. We concur with her family’s view on this issue and demand impartial investigation and strict punishment to the perpetrators. In another shocking incident a 22-year-oldSikkimese­ girl was abducted and raped in moving car.She was returning to her PG in Gurgoan after watching a movie with her friends. Three men abducted her at 2 am from right outside her residence. They took turns in raping her and finally threw her in Najafgarh area around 6 am. The half-hearted approach of the authorities is clearly evident in this case, wherein the police have not been able to track down the three rapists, even after three days of the incident. Also perplexing is the silence maintained by civil society and the larger political establishments. Why are thepolice always laid-back in their approach towards resolving cases of sexual assault and violence pertaining to people from Northeast or other marginalised communities?Why do the media either completely ignore such incidents or try to sensationalise it,ignoring the obvious facts? If women are not safe even in the capital of this country where else can they be? When will our political leaders wake up from deep slumber and demand justice for the aggrieved?Why violence experienced by those who are socio-economically disadvantaged and politically weak goes unreported and unnoticed? Why does outrage tend to be selective? Under such hierarchical social relations, can gender justice for all ever prevail?

Failure to deliver justice only strengthens the forces of patriarchy and sexual-harassers and jeopardizes the space for women to come up and lodge complaints against similar cases of violence.We appeal to the concerned authorities of GorkhalandTerritoria­l Administration (GTA) and Sikkim to pay heed to the gravity of the situation and immediately take steps to facilitate the delivery of justice.We express our deep condolence with Teresa’s family and strong solidarity with both Teresa’s family and the girl from Sikkim in their fight for justice. We condemn these incidents in the strongest possible words anddemand speedy trial and prompt delivery of justice. Thank You , Gorkha Students, JNU

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