India media: Nun's rape 'horrifying'

This photo taken on March 14, 2015 shows students from the Convent of Jesus and Mary in Ranaghat, 70 kilometres north of Kolkata, protesting after a 71-year-old nun was gang-raped at the convent. Image copyright AFP
Image caption The students of the convent have protested against the rape of the 74-year-old nun

Papers urge the government in West Bengal state to improve the security of women after the rape of an elderly nun.

Ten men have been detained in connection with the incident, which happened early on Saturday morning.

But none of them resemble the six alleged attackers who were caught on CCTV burgling the convent before the 74-year-old nun was raped.

The nun is being treated in a Kolkata (Calcutta) hospital.

"Time was when West Bengal had a slightly better record than most other parts of the country as far as the safety of women was concerned, but the state is badly slipping on that count," says the Hindustan Times.

Other papers too have been giving prominent coverage to the "inhumane and barbaric crime".

Papers have highlighted that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed "deep concerns" over the incident.

The Hindustan Times wonders if religious tensions also played a role in the crime.

"There are various reasons for rape and among them one could be is inter-community tension. In this case, this could have been the most potent one. When there is a dispute between two communities and the administration is found to be slack, one that has a greater local heft tries to browbeat the other by means of calculated violence. And in the process women become soft targets," it says in an editorial.

The DNA criticises the main opposition Congress party for failing to raise the issue in the parliament.

"A nun was gang-raped at a missionary school and an under-construction church was demolished. It was left to Communist Party leader D Raja to raise the issue after the Congress walked out of the upper house over the so-called snooping incident," the paper says.

India's BJP-led government has denied allegations by the Congress party that it snooped on its vice-president Rahul Gandhi.

Beef ban

Meanwhile, the state government in the northern state of Haryana has banned beef consumption and killing of cows.

Haryana has followed the western state of Maharashtra, which has also banned beef and "cow slaughter".

"The new law [in Haryana] will also promote conservation and development of indigenous breeds of cows and establish institutions to keep, maintain and take care of the infirm, injured, stray and uneconomic cows," reports the NDTV website.

The move has sparked anger in a section of the media and opposition parties have also criticised it.

"India is a diverse country and in a diverse country people have different culinary habits. Beef is also a poor man's protein. So, this is nothing else but a political agenda," a report on the Zee News website quotes Congress leader Manish Tewari as saying.

The Hindu nationalist BJP is the ruling party in both Haryana and Maharashtra states.

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