Congress president Rahul Gandhi's spontaneous decision on Thursday evening to hold a midnight candlelight march over the Unnao and Kathua rape cases saw surprised party leaders pressing panic buttons to activate workers.
Modi's reaction came after the Congress and other opposition parties launched a scathing attack on the prime minister over his silence over the incidents which had unleashed anger across the country. Why are accused rapists and murderers protected by the state. India is waiting, "Rahul tweeted. This is a national issue and not a political one", said Rahul at the march towards the India Gate. A week later, her body was found in the same area.
After the plan had been discussed with him, Patel spread the word among other leaders of the party, including Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken, Mahila Congress president Sushmita Dev, Congress general secretary Ashok Gehlot, and Rajya Sabha members Ghulam Nabi Azad and Digvijaya Singh. As a society, we all are ashamed for it as a country.
In Kathua, an 8-year-old nomadic Bakarwal tribal girl named Asifa was raped and murdered at the Devisthan temple.
Speaking on the occasion, Mr Reddy said that the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre had failed to run the Budget Sesison of Parliament properly and asked how they could rule the country. "The Congress stands for justice to the minor victim of rape and murder and demands the culprits get exemplary punishment", he said.
"I strongly condemn the party, which sees even rape on religious and class lines".
Reminding everyone about his first Independence Day speech at the Redfort as the PM in 2014 where he had talked extensively about the need to treat boys and girls equally, the PM said that his government was committed to the welfare of women.
Nine accused, including the alleged mastermind Sanji Ram - an ex-bureaucrat - and his son Vishal Kumar, a police head constable, two SPOs and a sub-inspector of police, have been arrested in the case.
Netizens have been fuming over the inaction in the Kathua and Unnao rape cases demanding for a stronger law and punishment for the accused.
New Delhi MP Meenakshi Lekhi, while seeking stringent punishment for the guilty, defended two Jammu and Kashmir ministers of the party who had joined a rally against a police probe into the Kathua gangrape and murder case.