Street crowds demand death for rape suspects in India

Police in India’s capital Sunday used tear gas and water cannons for a second day on demonstrators who are demanding speedy action against the six detainees accused of a gang rape and beating of a 23-year-old female student.

Sonia Gandhi, chief of the ruling Congress Party, emerged from her residence after midnight to talk to the protesters. She went out again later Sunday with her son, Rahul, who is widely seen as a future prime minister.

Police said they had banned protests in the area of New Delhi where the protesters have been staging massive demonstrations about the rape. Police said the areas near the president’s residence and parliament have been declared off-limits to protesters.

Saturday thousands of protesters marched in New Delhi, shouting “we want justice,” as police struggled to control the crowd.

Protests have taken place across the country for several days. Many protesters are demanding the death penalty for the six men now in detention.

The rape victim was attacked last Sunday after she and a male friend were given a ride on a bus in New Delhi. She remains hospitalized with severe injuries. Despite her condition, she was able to give a statement to police Saturday.

More than 600 cases of rape have been reported in New Delhi so far this year, one of the highest rates in the country.

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