Demonstrations continued in Delhi and other cities on Friday, October 2, linked to the gang-rape of a 19-year-old woman in Hathras district (Uttar Pradesh). Hundreds of protesters gathered at the Jantar Mantar in Delhi to call for the government to take further action on violence against women. The protest had been originally scheduled to occur at India Gate; however, this was moved after police imposed restrictions against gatherings there. Earlier in Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh), police charged a group of some 100 protesters affiliated with the Samajwadi Party. Supporters of the opposition Congress Party also gathered in Kolkata (West Bengal).
Further protests are likely to occur and may attract an increased security presence with associated disruptions to travel and business operations.
A 19-year-old Dalit woman was attacked and raped by four men of a higher caste in the Hathras district of Uttar Pradesh on September 14 and died in hospital following the attack. The incident has sparked anger amongst the Dalit community who claim they are denied equal protection under the law. The Bhim Army Dalit rights organization has called for nationwide protest following the victim's death. Unrest was also reported in Delhi, Hathras, and Kolkata on Wednesday, September 30.
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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