In two separate incidents during the recent communal violence in northeast Delhi, members of right-wing mobs had allegedly pulled down their own pants and pointed their genitals towards groups of women saying, “Yeh lo azaadi (Here, take freedom)”.
According to a report by The Wire, two separate groups of women — one present at the Chand Bagh protest and another at Shiv Vihar — have made the identical claim.
‘Azaadi’ is a rallying cry used often by protesters to demand freedom. Such sloganeering has been heard at several demonstrations against the Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens in the recent past.
The first incident was reported from Delhi’s Chand Bagh area on February 24, according to the report. A woman alleged the incident happened when she and other protesters confronted the police after two of their members were detained by them.
“A group of right-wingers came up to us, shouting ‘Jai Shri Ram’, and four men there pulled their pants down and pointed their genitals at us, and shouted ‘Yeh lo azaadi’,” the report said quoting the woman who did not wish to be named.
She claimed men belonging to their group stood guard in front of them in order to protect them when the right-wing mob resorted to this act of indecency. This prompted the mob to pelt stones at them, she said.
“I heard them say, bring the women out onto the road. They said ‘bring them out, we will assault them, drag them’,” she was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, several incidents of sexual assault were witnessed in Shiv Vihar, the report quoted several women as claiming.
Narrating one such incident, a woman claimed, “The mobs were from outside, but there were also locals there. The locals told them where we lived – this is a Hindu house, this is a Muslim house.”
“They opened their pants and showed us, and asked, do you want azaadi? They opened their pants… They beat us, they tore our clothes,” the woman was quoted saying.