A popular Indian spiritual guru has sparked a backlash after saying a 23-year-old student could have averted a murderous gang-rape by begging for mercy from her attackers.
Self-styled godman Asharam, known to his followers as Bapu, or father, told his devotees on Tuesday that blame for the assault on a moving bus in New Delhi on December 16 should not just rest with her attackers.
“This tragedy would not have happened if she had chanted God’s name and fallen at the feet of the attackers. The error was not committed by just one side,” he said in video footage which has been widely circulated on the internet.
The 71-year-old’s remarks – the latest in a series of gaffes by public figures blaming women for the country’s rape epidemic – drew a chorus of condemnation.
I suggest we charge him with being an accessory to rape.