SHILLONG, Jan 11: From musicians to differently abled children, women organisations to students and the common man, thousands took to the street in Meghalaya raising their voice in unison against crimes against women and children and demanding the Home Minister to step down following the involvement of the guest house owned by his family in the trafficking and rape of a 14 year old minor.
Fuelled by the same purpose to seek justice for the victims and demanding legislation to ensure safety of women and children, the rally witnessed mass participation from all walks of life. Chants demanding the Home Minister to step down and women safety echoed through the city streets as the rally passed through the heart of the city.
“I am here today as I believe that acts of violence committed against women not only in Shillong but all across the country have to stop,” said the musician from popular Blue’s band Soulmate, Rudy Wahlang further adding, “I am a father of two daughters and I would not want them to be treated or mistreated in such way.”
Expressing similar sentiments, Khasi Student Union president, Daniel Khyriem, said, “We strongly condemn the victimization of a 14 year old minor by various individuals and especially by a legislator and demand stringent action to be implemented under the POCSO Act against the accused”.
“We as the KSU will follow up with the investigation and see to it that the victim gets justice,” he added.
On the growing demand for the Home Minister to step down, Khyriem said, “It is the moral responsibility of the Home Minister to step down because if he does not step down there is always a doubt as to investigation involving a guest house owned by his son will be carried out”.
Standing strong and determined to move forward for the cause of women and child safety, the Civil Society Women Organisation, (CSWO) and Thma U Rangli, (TUR) are all set to intensify their stir against the government if their immediate demands on the issue are not met.
“Our immediate demand is that the Home Minister steps down and all the guest houses named by the 14 year old minor be sealed and put under investigation,” said founding member of TUR Angela Rangad further announcing to intensify the stir if their demands are not met.
Echoing similar sentiments CSWO president Agnes Kharshiing said that the rally is to show that citizens of Shillong stand together in this fight against crime against women and children and to seek justice for the victims of such atrocities.