An Indian guru who is popular in India has offended many after stating that the rape victim was equally responsible in India’s high profile gang rape attack in December.
Asaram Bapu told his followers that the woman “should have taken God’s name and could have held the hand of one of the men and said I consider you as my brother and should have said to the other two ‘Brother I am helpless, you are my brother, my religious brother’.”
“She should have taken God’s name and held their hands and feet… then the misconduct wouldn’t have happened.”
According to Indian newspapers, Bapu also stated: “The accused were drunk. If the girl had chanted hymns to Goddess Saraswati and to Guru Diksha then she wouldn’t have entered the bus.”
Bapu’s spokesman Niam Dubey told the media that her client’s statements were misunderstood.
“Bapujee never made such statements. He just asked his women followers to avoid such situation.”
“He was only suggesting that women should try their level-best to come out from such situation by using diplomatic ways. We request the media not to distort the statement, this will dissolve such a sensitive issue.”
Dubey continued, “Yes, he said that the girl had made a mistake by taking an empty bus in night. If she had taken ‘Matra-Diksha’, the God has might save her anyhow.”
The Indian gang rape trial has caught the international attention in December 2012. The unnamed rape victim entered a bus where five men allegedly raped her. Many were outraged that there was a lack of police action when the rape was reported. Protestors went to the streets to support the 23-year-old victim. However, with the pressure from police and media, the young woman committed suicide on December 30, 2012.
Five men had been formally charged with the abduction, gang rape and murder of the young woman.