The Bharat Yatra, launched by Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi on 11 September, entered the state of Karnataka, reaching Kolar on 15th September, the fifth day of the 35-day long march across the country to build unprecedented awareness on combating child sexual abuse and trafficking.
Within five days of the launch, this march has already mobilized and has been joined by over 55,000 children, youth and working professionals, with the largest turnout in Kolar of nearly 10,000 people, who demanded for a stop to child sexual abuse, called for better laws in the country and pledged to protect the children of India from these heinous acts.
The Yatra marchers called upon the youth of the country to step up and fight for children across India. They urged people of Kolar to strive towards building a safe childhood and a safe India.
Satayarthi, said, “It is not enough to declare a war against rape and sexual abuse. We must look towards concrete solutions and confidence building measures to ensure the security for our children.”
"I appeal to all parents to help instil a sense of trust and be friends with your children so that they can speak fearlessly about any problem. Surakshit Bachpan-Surakshit Bharat has to be realized for our children, politically, economically and socially,” he added.
Re-iterating his mission behind launching the Bharat Yatra, he said “Why am I marching? Because my children are being raped. I refuse to accept that eight children go missing and two are raped every hour. Each time if a single child is in danger, India is in danger. Bharat Yatra is to make India safe again for our children.”
Kailash Satyarthi has been campaigning for the freedom, safety and security for children across the globe for the past 36 years. His Nobel Peace Prize (2014) was for his continuous efforts and struggle for the rights children.
The Yatra is the launch of the three-year campaign against child rape and child sexual abuse which is aimed at increasing awareness and reporting of the cases, strengthening intuitional response including medical health and compensations, ensuring protection for victims and witnesses during trials and increasing convictions of child sexual abuse in a time bound manner.