Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said that the incidents in Kathua and Unnao “cannot be part of a civilised society”, ANI reported. The prime minister had been criticised for his silence about the rapes of two minors in Jammu and Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh.
In Kathua, eight people, including a juvenile, have been chargesheeted for abducting, drugging and raping an eight year-old-girl before murdering her. In Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao, a Bharatiya Janata Party MLA is accused of raping a 17-year-old girl.
“As a country, as a society, we all are ashamed of it,” Modi said after inaugurating the Ambedkar memorial in New Delhi. “I want to assure the country that no culprit will be spared, complete justice will be done. Our daughters will definitely get justice.”
The brief remarks were a small part of a speech he made at the inauguration of the memorial, during which Modi blamed the Congress for ignoring Babasaheb Ambedkar. “Many governments came to power after Independence, but what should have been done much before has happened now, after decades,” Modi said. “This memorial is a tribute to Babasaheb Ambedkar.”
He claimed: “After Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government, when the Congress came to power, they closed files related to this project. When we were given a chance to serve the people, we dug out the files and worked on them.”
He said his government had strengthened the law against atrocities on Dalits in 2015. He accused the Congress of trying to remove any mention of Ambedkar from the country’s history. “The the bitter truth of history is that when Babasaheb was alive, Congress left no stone unturned to insult him,” the prime minister said.
The prime minister took a Delhi metro train from Lok Kalyan Marg to arrive at the venue of the memorial.
The inauguration of the memorial comes after a series of incidents of vandalism against several statues of Babasaheb Ambedkar around the country recently. Dalit groups also organised a Bharat Bandh on April 2 against a Supreme Court order which prohibited the arrest of public servants without inquiry under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.