It was a sad time, one year ago, as a person of great courage and resolve was killed in cold blood.
Thousands of protesters poured into city streets across India on Wednesday to mark the anniversary of the unsolved killing of a social activist who had fought to ban black magic and other superstitious practices.
Supporters and fellow activists gathered at 7:55 a.m. in the western city of Pune, on the spot where 68-year-old Narendra Dabholkar was shot by unidentified assailants while taking his ritual morning walk. In Mumbai, India’s financial capital, demonstrators sang folk songs, chanted “We are all Dabholkars” and renewed criticism of authorities for failing to solve the crime.
Activist are concerned that those who challenge the powerful institutions, such as government or religion, are not protected and are at risk for harassment and even assassination. Most of the cases go unsolved, including Dabholkar’s which took place in daylight. Soon after, a person was arrested but this seemed to go nowhere. One news outlet reports that police used black magic to try and find the killer. Ironic, isn’t it?
The state rushed through the Anti-superstition law after the murder. There is a small minority uprising against superstitious practices in India. It is greatly needed.