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Outrage After Women Were Assaulted By A Mob Of Men In A City Center On New Year's

Men flooded the streets of Bengaluru over the weekend, attacking women who were out celebrating New Year's Eve.

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Around midnight on New Year's Eve, a mob of men took to the streets of Bengaluru, India, and began sexually assaulting women walking along the city’s main roads.

Str / AFP / Getty Images

The attacks are now being referred as the “Night of Shame” by outraged social media users. According to local media, the mobs of men were so large that police were unable to contain the attacks, opting instead to only intervene “depending on the ‘gravity’ of the situation.”

According to eyewitnesses, the mobs of men shouted lewd comments at young women in the streets, groped and harassed them, and forced some to take off their shoes and run to nearby police officers for help.

#TheNightofShame | ‘I had to protect my friend from molesters’ https://t.co/tY6Hx4Aue1

There were reports of police watching helplessly unable to do anything against the crowds of men, who severely outnumbered the police. According to local media, more than 15,000 police officials were on duty on streets and yet they failed to stop the mobs.

A former city police commissioner told the Bangalore Mirror that the mobs of men were so massive that the entire city’s police force, along with men from reserve battalions, were called in to try and keep the peace during the night.

Another woman told The Logical Indian that she was groped twice while out with friends in Bengaluru. She said that at one point her friends had to create a human shield around her to keep men from molesting her.

#TheNightofShame | ‘I had to protect my friend from molesters,’ says a man who saved his friend from attack… https://t.co/avFuatxO7p

Several photos of the attacks were tweeted by onlookers as well.

#crazy #mgroad #bangalore #NewYearsEve After seeing this inhumane acts of people. There is definitely a need of… https://t.co/Bq6JtRjvp8

After kicking her attacker in the groin, Wasnik said "the only sad part of the incident was my chicken curry container got spilled."

On this fuckin new year some random guy tried to grope me while I was returning home from work and with so much ease he did as if he thought il not utter a word because I'm a fuckin scared woman and he has a reason because he's drunk and let him escape. When you can't fuckin handle your drink. Why do u drink? Fukat ka mila toh muut bhi pilega kya. Punched and kicked the fuck outta him and his balls till he couldn't take the pain. Around 10-15 people tried to stop me. Upon that, that motherfucker still had the guts to say" I didn't do anything. I'm innocent" yeah bitch I was the one who tried to grope your half inch nipples. You are fuckin innocent. No fuckin cop came in between to stop us. Like what the fuck. Bastard ran away holding his paining dick. You messed with a wrong woman bitch. Go home and show those scratches and marks to your mother aur bolna north wali ladki se maar kha ke aya. Ab kabhi land khada nai hoga kisiko dekh ke .I made sure this Motherfuckin cunthead remembers this fuckin night for the rest of his life. The only sad part of the incident was my chicken curry container got spilled. And luckily a guy returned me my biryani container. Whoever you are. Thanks man! Meri biryani ka khayal rakhne ke liye.

G. Parameshwara, the home minister for Karnataka, the state Bengaluru is in, released a statement about the attacks placing most of the blame on the women, arguing that if they weren't dressing like Western women, they would have never been attacked.

Facebook: DrGParameshwara

"Unfortunately, what is happening is that on days like New Year's, Brigade Road, Commercial Street, or M.G. Road, a large number of youngsters gather," Parameshwara said. "And youngsters were almost like Westerners. They tried to copy the Westerners, not only in their mindset but even in their dressing. So some disturbance, some girls are harassed, these kind of things do happen."

Though the influence of Western culture was blamed for the attacks, Parameshwara did say the state will be investigating the incident.

New Year’s eve in #Bengaluru witnesses mass molestation of women in police presence. Shame!

Parameshwara said his office would also “see if there are any alternatives to this kind of events so that women and children are safe."

Bengaluru is considered a safer city than other Indian metropolitan areas, like Delhi. However, it records the third-highest number of attacks against women, according to India's national crime statistics. According to Amnesty International, only 1% of Indian women who experience sexual violence actually report it to authorities.

Ryan Broderick is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Ryan Broderick at ryan@buzzfeed.com.

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