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Delhi gangrape accused must be given reform chance: Rahul Bose

New Delhi, Mar 8, 2013, (PTI):

Actor activist Rahul Bose today came out in favour of giving the perpetrators of last year's Delhi gangrape a chance to reform and create a "gender warrior" among them.

"... We have to ask ourselves of the five or six of the rapists of the December 16 is there anyone who wants to change, who wants to reform... Nobody is saying about commuting any sentence, the sentence stands as it is but while it stands can we create a gender warrior among them?" he asked.

The actor was participating in a year-long "Ring The Bell" campaign launched by NGO Breakthrough which seeks to mobilise one million men around the world to commit to taking concrete action to end violence against women.

"If anybody is open to reaffirmation do we have it in us to subvert our patriarchal mindset and tell them that we are ready to confer even the right to reform to you even if there is such a massive public upsurge against you," said Bose.

The actor further said,"If we have to move further civilisational as a society, if we have to evolve as a civilisation further beyond the boundaries of India then we have to look at forgiveness."

The 23-year girl, who was gangraped by six men in a moving bus on December 16, died in a Singapore hospital after battling for life.

The campaign "One million men. One million promises to end violence against women", simultaneously launched today in six cities across the world including New York, Johannesburg and Rio, pledges to connect people through social media to discuss and find new solutions to end violence.

Stressing on the needs to challenge the habits, norms and behaviour that perpetuates violence, 'Breakthrough' vice president Sonali Khan said, "We are calling on men and boys around the world to take a stand against violence against women by making a concrete promise that they keep.

"With men as partners, we can build a world in which women are respected- and in which all of us live freely and without fear. Each action will add up to one million; one million will start the change," she added.

Sitar player and composer Anoushka Shankar said, "I am excited to be part of a campaign that promotes deeper dialogue and therefore understanding to help bring about a groundswell of change in the tragic global epidemic of violence against women. It's important to engage men in this dialogue as this violence against women is not exclusively a women's issue."


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