India's New Prime Minister Says Country Shamed By Rape

Email a Friend
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the nation on the country's Independence Day in New Delhi, India, Friday, Aug. 15, 2014. India celebrates its 1947 independence from British colonial rule on Aug. 15. (Saurabh Das/AP)

Narendra Modi, who swept into power in May, used the country’s Independence Day to make some unprecedented public comments about sexual assault. He called on parents to treat their sons and daughters equally, and teach them the difference between right and wrong.

A fatal gang rape on a bus in Dehli in 2012 caused outrage in a country that has been inured to sexual violence against women. But the outrage sparked new and tougher prison terms for rapists, and Prime Minister Modi is trying to keep the progress on that issue moving.

The BBC’s Zubair Ahmed joins Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson from Dehli with details on the prime minister’s remarks, which also included abortion and building separate toilets for women.

Note: This BBC interview can be heard in the Here & Now podcast or with the WBUR app.


  • Zubair Ahmed, correspondent for the BBC based in Dehli. He tweets @Zubair_BBC.
Copyright 2014 WBUR-FM. To see more, visit