ibnlive » India

Jan 01, 2013 at 08:27am IST

Gangrape: India welcomes New Year on sombre note, protests to continue

New Delhi: It's the first day of 2013, and India welcomed the New Year on a mournful and sombre note. Big get-togethers were cancelled and candle-light marches were organised in memory of the 23-year-old braveheart, who died thirteen days after a most brutal sexual assault.

Protest marches continued at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi. The public rallies are demanding concrete improvement in women's safety, a change in law, governance, policing and justice. Several hotels and clubs across India cancelled their New Year celebrations.

ALSO SEE Gangrape: Charges finalised as govt plans tougher laws, no New Year bashes

Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar also cancelled their plans.

Amidst these demands, rapper Yo Yo Honey Singh's New Year's concert at a Gurgaon hotel was cancelled after online protests. The popstar said he volunteered to scrap his show. Honey Singh's songs have been criticised for having controversial lyrics which reportedly glorify rape in particular and are demeaning to women in general. You too can log onto Change.org to sign this petition.

ALSO SEE Delhi braveheart death: Indian Army, Sonia not to celebrate New Year

Security tightened across country on New Year's eve

Mumbai: Special crowd management arrangements were made at popular spots like the Gateway of India, Juhu beach and Girgaum Chowpatty. CCTVs were installed on roads that constantly monitored traffic violations. Extra security was in place at vital installations including Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, the airport and the Mantralaya building. Nearly 48,000 police personnel patrolled the city in two shifts.

Kolkata: Heavy security was put in place ahead of New Year celebrations. Five thousand policemen, including senior officers, were out on the roads. CCTV cameras were installed at crucial locations. Organisers of all major bashes open to the public were also asked to install CCTVs and deploy security guards. Major clubs and pubs also deployed female security guards this year. Around 200 mobile police vans were on the roads, and pickets installed in more than two hundreds points.

Bangalore: Around 35 battalions of reserve police and 1000 Home Guards were on the streets to provide security for the New Year's celebrations. Temporary watch towers were put up for police surveillance. A public address system was also in place at popular spots like MG Road and Brigade Road.

We only hope that the police presence is not a temporary measure even as they claim that all efforts will be made to ensure safety of women.

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