Indian media: Questions on women's safety after Danish woman's rape in Delhi

The Delhi police have arrested two people in connection with the gang rape of a Danish woman. Image copyright AP
Image caption The Delhi police have arrested two people in connection with the gang rape of a Danish woman.

Media in India are highlighting renewed concerns over women's safety in Delhi after the gang rape of a 51-year-old Danish woman.

The tourist was attacked by a group of men in the Paharganj area of the national capital on Tuesday evening. Police say she was robbed and raped at knifepoint.

"The attack is the latest involving a foreigner in India, and again raises questions about the safety of women in the country," the Hindustan Times reports.

The incident comes a month after India marked the first anniversary of the gang rape and murder of a student in Delhi that sent shockwaves across the nation.

"Such incidents show that despite tough laws in place after the 16 December [2012] gang rape, attacks on women have not gone down and there does not seem to be much fear of the law", the paper says in an editorial.

The Times of India echoes similar sentiments, saying "that a woman can get gang-raped in the heart of the national capital in the afternoon of a week day shows just how terrible is the situation when it comes to women's safety in India".

Papers are also criticising the newly formed Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi over the issue of women's safety.

"The rape in the heart of the city also puts a question mark on the AAP's electoral promise to make Delhi safe for women," The Asian Age reports.

The NDTV website says the party, which had "bitterly attacked former chief minister Sheila Dixit for making Delhi unsafe, finds itself at a loss for answers today".

Newspapers and websites are also underlining the latest incident's impact on the country's image.

The incident "showed India in a bad light once again" says The Pioneer.

Laloo Prasad on Twitter

Moving on to other news, journalists in the eastern state of Orissa are protesting against the arrest of a colleague over allegations of "hurting religious sentiments" by publishing a picture of the Prophet Muhammad, the Hindustan Times reports.

Jitendra Prasad Das of the Samaj newspaper was arrested on Tuesday for publishing the picture he apparently downloaded from the internet, it adds.

Islam prohibits making images of any person. In the orthodox tradition, photography is allowed only when someone needs a photo for travel or other purposes, the paper says.

In business news, inflation figures dropped to a five-month low of 6.16% in December owing to lower vegetable prices, The Times of India reports.

Analysts say the drop in inflation, based on the Wholesale Price Index, may force India's central bank to adjust interest rates.

"The easing of inflation at a time when industrial growth continues to be in the red should induce the Reserve Bank of India [central bank] to review its monetary policy stance and cut its policy rates to rejuvenate growth…" the report quotes Confederation of Indian Industry director-general Chandrajit Banerjee as saying.

Meanwhile, Dalit (low-caste Hindus) leader Mayawati has announced that her Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) will not form an alliance with any party in the upcoming general elections.

"There are media reports of a Congress-BSP electoral alliance. But I want to make it very clear, we will contest alone," the DNA newspaper quotes her as saying.

And finally, Laloo Prasad Yadav, one of India's colourful politicians and chief of the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) party, has opened an account on Twitter after he realised "the importance of social media used successfully by political leaders like Narendra Modi and others", the NDTV website reports.

"Only change is constant. With change, we change, finally on Twitter," said the RJD chief in his first tweet.

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