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Bollywood demands justice for Manipur horror

The recently surfaced video of two women belonging to the Kuki-Zomi community being paraded naked and being assaulted by a mob of men, has sent shockwaves across India. Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar and director Vivek Agnihotri have strongly reacted to the video, condemning the “shameful” act.

Akshay Kumar took to his Twitter and shared a note saying that he feels shaken and disgusted to see such unspeakable cruelty being meted out to the women.

He tweeted: “Shaken, disgusted to see the video of violence against women in Manipur. I hope the culprits get such a harsh punishment that no one ever thinks of doing a horrifying thing like this again.”

Vivek Agnihotri, who is known for ‘The Kashmir Files’, took to his Instagram and shared a heartfelt note saying how the nation has failed as a society.

He wrote in his Instagram post: “MANIPUR: Moplah, Direct Action Day, Noakhali, Bangladesh, Punjab, Kashmir, Bengal, Kerala, Assam, Bastar and now Manipur. Every time our innocent mothers and sisters become the ultimate victims of inhuman, barbarian acts. As a Bharatiya, as a man, as a human being, I am shattered each time. I am ashamed.”

He further mentioned that he feels guilty for being helpless in such a situation and also wrote that there is “no right to life in free India.”

He continued: “I am so guilty for my helplessness. O Manipur, I tried… I tried… but I failed. All I can do now is tell their tragic stories through my work. But it’s too late by then. We are all victims of selective and hyper- competitive electoral politics. We are victims of hyper-religion. We are victims of dangerous media. We, the people of Bharat, are victims. There is no #RightToLife in free India. And we can’t do anything about it.”

“This is not the freedom I want. This is not the kind of democracy I want. It’s worth nothing if it makes us bay for each other’s blood. We are a failed society. I am sorry, my sisters. I am sorry, my mothers. I am sorry, Bharat Mata,” he added.

Soni Razdan wrote in her Instagram Story: “I really want to know what the government is going, and why primetime news is not flooded with news about Manipur and most important of all, where is the Army?”

Kiara Advani tweeted: “The video of violence against women in Manipur is horrifying and has shaken me to the core. I pray the women get justice at the earliest. Those responsible must face the most SEVERE punishment they deserve.”

Sanjay Dutt also took to his Twitter and wrote: “The video portraying violence against women in Manipur was shocking and sickening. My utmost hope is for the culprits to be punished with the utmost severity, sending a clear message that such despicable actions will not be tolerated in any circumstance.”

Actor Riteish Deshmukh too wrote on his Twitter: “Deeply disturbed with the visuals of the atrocities against the women in Manipur… I am seething with anger… no man should go unpunished for such crime. Attack on the dignity of a woman is an attack on humanity itself (sic).”

Actor-comedian Vir Das shared a series of tweet holding the government and the officials responsible for the shameful and the delay in bringing justice to the victims.

He wrote: “When horrific incidents occur make no mistake, through the system, our leaders are IMMEDIATELY aware. When months later videos go viral, twitter is aware. If leaders only then respond, it’s to twitter, not horrific incidents. They care about online outrage, not real people.”

He continued in his tweets: “People outrage as and when they become aware or are allowed to. It takes a specific kind of creepy man to invalidate a crime against a woman by offsetting it against the comparative outrage for another crime against another woman. It’s Masterful whataboutery. Don’t fall for it.”

“Grateful to see our leadership speak up and take action for the viral people of India,” he added.

The video shows two women, one in her 20s and the other in her 40s, being made to walk naked down a road and towards a field by a mob of men. Some of the men can be seen dragging the two women towards a field and sexually assaulting them.

Though the said incident took place on May 4 as per the police, the video emerged on July 19 sparking massive outrage across the country.

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