SocietyNews Feminist News Wrap – Murthal Gang Rape, ‘Be Our Pondati’, People’s Tribunal For Caste Discrimination at UoH

Feminist News Wrap – Murthal Gang Rape, ‘Be Our Pondati’, People’s Tribunal For Caste Discrimination at UoH

Feminist news from around the country in a quick wrap.


On 12 April 2016, a minor girl (aged 16) from Handwara had, accused army personnel of sexual assault. Four persons have been killed to date by armed forces personnel following protests. On the same day, a video was released of the minor girl. On the same day, a video was released of the minor girl exonerating the armed forces of sexual assault. The police have also taken away her father and aunt on ‘protective custody.’ The whereabouts of the girl and her family remains unknown.

At Natnusa village in Kashmir’s Kupwara, a 17-year-old Arif Ahmad died after security forces opened fire on a crowd of protesters.

Caste & Universities

In Hyderabad, civil society organizations put together a People’s Tribunal on Caste Discrimination & Police Action at UoH. In the tribunal, several students and faculty gave their own statements pertaining to the various forms of caste discrimination in the university and police action they faced after the Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile came back to the university. The statements are recorded and available on youtube for public viewing. 

To commemorate Ambedkar Jayanti, the Ambedkar Periyar Circle of IIT Madras, organized a seminar last week. However, the IITM administration has been suffocating the group and trying their best to curb the activities of  the group. Here is a report. On the same day, a Dalit scholar from EFLU was pushed out and suspended from the university. He says he may have been targeted by the English and Foreign Languages University (EFLU) for participating in the agitation seeking justice for Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula.

Murthal Gang Rape

After going back and forth on whether rape happened or not during the Jat agitation at Murthal, the Haryana police informed the Punjab and Haryana high court that fresh charges under section 376 (D) (gang rape) has been added in the FIR already registered on complaint of Delhi resident on the issue. The Haryana government also admitted to the courtthat there could be a possibility that rapes could have happened then. In the meantime, the complainant of the Murthal gang rape case received a call threatening him of dire consequences for ‘speaking too much’ on the matter.

Pop Culture

Students from IITM came up with this satirical video about arranged marriages title ‘Be Our Pondati‘, which went viral, and rightly so!

Women’s Entry Into Temples

After the Bombay High Court ruling has specified that women should be allowed into the Sanctum Sanctorum of temples across the state, the debate has still not abated. A religious leader, Shankaracharya Swaroopanand has declared that the entry of women into a famous temple devoted to Lord Shani or Saturn in Maharashtra will drive more rapes. And the Trimbakeshwar Temple has a rider that specifies women will be allowed in the area only in wet silk or cotton sarees between 6 AM and 7 AM.

What We’re Reading

Well here is an article that talks about how you are not really hardwired to look at women’s breasts. 

Featured Image Credit: An image of the undergarments strewn on the highway after the gang rape |

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