The public outpouring of anger and support has made many women across India feel like their fears and concerns are finally being heard.
Ranjana Kumari, director of the Center for Social Research and a longtime women’s rights activist, said the fact that boys and men had joined the protests ‘‘gives us hope.’’
‘‘Then it becomes everyone’s issue, and not just a women’s issue,’’ she said.
But no one imagines that change will be quick.
‘‘The process is gradual,’’ Kumari said. ‘‘Extremely patriarchal societies don’t change in short bursts. But this movement will certainly not go to waste.’’
Associated Press writers Biswajeet Banerjee in Lucknow, Aijaz Rahi in Bangalore, Indrajit Singh in Patna, Wasbir Hussain in Gauhati and Rajesh Kumar Singh in Allahabad contributed to this report.