The whole episode of rushing through the secret funeral of the Delhi rape victim, the government has displayed most appalling and insensitive behaviour that runs counter to the people’s outrage. Even the Congress party chief Sonia Gandhi was not left behind. She has asked her party not to celebrate or hold New Year parties. These kind of small and foolish gestures achieve very little except glorify one’s ego. These are not even populist, a most common response of politicians. Recently, the government hanged and secretly buried Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab. Such secrecy is understandable if one is dealing with terror elements. But why treat the rape victim in such reprehensible manner? If people wanted to join her funeral, they should have been allowed. The political class cannot make sympathetic statements and then act in a manner that smacks of conspiracy and cowardice. Only a government that is worried about losing power or clueless about public sentiments will resort to a clampdown at India Gate and mess up with a grieving family. The 23-year-old gang-rape victim, who lost her life in a Singapore hospital on Saturday, was cremated here early on Sunday in extreme secrecy, hours after her mortal remains were received by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi at Delhi Airport. Amidst heavy deployment of Delhi Police, BSF and Rapid Action Force personnel in riot gear, the body was then taken to the victim’s house at Mahavir Enclave, in Dwarka. The insensitive government wanted to cremate the body by 6.30 am. However, Hindu rituals do not allow cremation before sunrise and the ceremony was held around 7.30 am. The funeral pyre was lit by her sobbing father at a crematorium after traumatised relatives and friends held final rituals at the house where the girl lived in Southwest Delhi. Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit, minister of state for home RPN Singh,West Delhi MP Mahabal Mishra, Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta were also present at the cremation from which the media was kept out. The police had approached the government on Saturday and proposed that the body be taken directly to Ballia in Uttar Pradesh, the girl’s native place, via Lucknow or Varanasi, but the government decided against it, sources said. Right after the cremation, the girl’s mother fainted several times and was rushed to Deen Dayal Upadhyay Hospital. A senior doctor said that she was suffering from grief and that is why she went unconscious for sometime in the morning after the cremation. Army too not to hold parties The Army has issued advisories to all its formations across the country against holding new year parties. Advisory has been issued to all formations that they should not organise new year parties, Army officials said. Army chief Gen Bikaram Singh and his wife Bubbles Singh will visit patients in Army Research and Referral Hospital here and Base Hospital on the first day of the new year and distribute sweets

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