Kolkata: People of Kolkata demanded death penalty for the six males who gang-raped a young woman in Delhi who died in a Singapore hospital Saturday.
"It is a day of national mourning. It is a personal loss not only for the victim's family but for the entire nation. The whole country should hang its head in shame," Bengali writer and activist Mahasweta Devi told IANS.
"It is a day of disgrace for all those who have been trying to gain political mileage by making rash and insensitive comments about rape," she said.
Former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee called the society to introspect.
"A young life was lost to the brutality of a few. It is time we introspect why such a heinous crime has been happening. There is need to check this menace," he said.
Filmmaker Buddhadeb Dasgupta blasted politicians for making crass comments about crimes against women.
"A woman dies the very moment she is raped. No man on earth can feel the pain, the agony she goes through every moment of her life as a rape victim," he said.
"Our political leaders keep killing them repeatedly with their cheap and insensitive comments. These people do not have the right to be our elected representatives."
CPI-M leader Anisur Rahman made obscene comments against West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee while ridiculing her government's decision to compensate victims of rape and trafficking.
On Friday, a woman Trinamool Congress MP described the Park Street rape case as a "sex deal gone wrong".
Another filmmaker, Goutam Ghose, blamed films and advertisements for objectifying women and encouraging men to treat them as "objects of desire".
Bengali actress Payel Sarkar demanded death penalty for the offenders, but said no punishment was enough.
"It is high time the society learnt to respect women and womanhood. It is time the government sent a strong message by hanging the culprits," Sarkar told IANS.
The 23-year-old physiotherapy intern was gang-raped and tortured in a bus in Delhi Dec 16. She was shifted to a Singapore hospital where she died Saturday.