Hundreds gathered at New Delhi's Safdarjung Hospital in protest against the death of a rape victim there on Tuesday, September 29. Military personnel were deployed at the hospital after activists from the Bhim Army reportedly entered the building and chanted slogans. The Bhim Army supports increased rights for the Dalit caste, the lowest in India's caste system. The 19-year-old Dalit woman had been brought to the hospital for treatment following an attack and rape by four men of a higher caste in the Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh on September 14. The attack has sparked anger amongst the Dalit community who claim they are denied equal protection under the law.
In response, members of the Bhim Army have called for nationwide protests to demand the death penalty for the perpetrators and increased rights for Dalits. Similar past incidents have also led to large women's rights protests throughout India.
Further protests are likely to attract an increased security presence and cause localized travel and business disruptions.
Those in India are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests and demonstrations as a precaution, anticipate a heightened security presence and localized business and transportation disruptions, and obey all instructions issued by local authorities.
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