End negative perceptions about women: President

 Against the backdrop of brutal gang-rape of a young girl in Delhi, President Pranab Mukherjee today said criminal attacks against women often happen due to "negative perceptions" about them and called for an end to it.

Addressing students at the 9th convocation of Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology here, Mukherjee said the government is alert to the situation and is taking necessary action to ensure that such unfortunate incidents are not repeated.

"I pray for the speedy recovery of the brave young girl. Criminal attacks against women often happen in the backdrop of negative perceptions about women harboured and propagated by certain elements in the society. This must end," he said.

Expressing his "deep distress" over the incident, Mukherjee said, "We should inculcate in every member of the society the highest of the respect for women and the youth of the country will have to take lead in this area."

Noting that he appreciated the "justified anger" of the youth over the ghastly incident like this, he reminded the youth that reason should not be thrown to the wind and that they must learn to control their emotions and calmly and peacefully face the situation.

"Violence is not the solution," he said in his address.Mukherjee also expressed grief over the death of a Delhi Police constable who succumbed to injuries sustained in the violence on Sunday.

"I convey my heartfelt condolence at the loss of a young life who lost his life in the call of duty. I share the agony of the family of the deceased," he said.

Yesterday, the President had referred to the gang-rape of the girl in his Christmas message and hoped speedy recovery of the girl.

The 23-year-old girl was gang-raped inside a moving bus on December 16 in south Delhi. The incident sparked a wave of protests, leaving the capital paralysed.

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