The 23-year-old Delhi gang-rape victim, known to the world as "Nirbhaya" (fearless), was honoured with the Rani Laxmi Bai - Stree Shakti award posthumously by the Indian government, as a tribute to her courage and strength.
The mother of the victim, received the award from the President of India Pranab Mukherjee on the eve of the International Women's Day on 8 March.
Every year, the Stree Shakti award is given away to extraordinary women. This year's award ceremony took place at Vigyan Bhavan on Friday. Nirbhaya's father as well as her two brothers attended the event.
"I am particularly happy that Rani Laxmi Bai award has been given to the spirit of Nirbhaya....Nirbhaya as she is now known, was a brave and courageous girl who fought till the very last for her dignity and life," Mukherjee said in his speech, according to Press Trust of India.
"She is a true hero and symbolises the best in Indian youth and women. Her sad demise should not be in vain. We must do everything to ensure that such an incident never happens again," he added.
This is the second such award bestowed on "Nirbhaya" for showing exceptional courage and repeatedly calling for justice against the six attackers. The American government also honoured her with a posthumous "woman of courage" award.
First Lady Michelle Obama and US Secretary of State John Kerry gave the awards to 10 awardees for their courage and leadership in campaigning for women's rights and empowerment during the state department presentation ceremony on women's day.
Speaking at the event, Kerry praised the determination of "Nirbhaya" and described her as a brave woman. "As the father of two daughters, I cannot imagine the pain suffered by the parents of the young woman known as "Nirbhaya," the 23-year-old para-medical student murdered on a New Delhi bus simply for being a woman," Kerry was quoted as saying by Indo-Asian news service.
Rahul Bose Speaks in Favour of Attackers
The death of "Nirbhaya," who succumbed to her injuries two weeks after being gang-raped in a moving bus by six men, sparked outrage across India with protesters demanding justice for the victim and safer city for women.
Even as many demanded death penalty for the six accused, bollywood actor Rahul Bose came out in favour of the attackers and said that they need to be given a chance to reform and create a "gender warrior" among them.
The actor was participating in a year-long "Ring The Bell" campaign launched by NGO Breakthrough to seek one million men across the globe in taking strong action to end violence against women.
While speaking at the launch of the campaign, the actor said, "... We have to ask ourselves of the five or six of the rapists of the December 16 is there anyone who wants to change, who wants to reform... Nobody is saying about commuting any sentence, the sentence stands as it is but while it stands can we create a gender warrior among them," according to PTI.
"If we have to move further civilisational as a society, if we have to evolve as a civilisation further beyond the boundaries of India then we have to look at forgiveness," he added.
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