Delhi Rape reaction
Women protest in response to the rape of a 23-year-old student in New Delhi [Reuters].

The recent gang rape of a female student in the Indian capital New Delhi has prompted a raft of measures from the government to prevent similar incidents in future.

The 23-year old girl was raped inside a moving bus in New Delhi on her way home from the cinema with her boyfriend. The victim and her boyfriend were beaten with an iron rod after the assault.

The victim remains in hospital and is still "not out of danger" according to the authorities, four days after the attack.

Delhi Police have so far arrested five people. "The fifth accused has been arrested in the rape case. His age is being verified before giving details. If minor, we have to hold back his particulars as per law," tweeted the Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar.

New Delhi chief minister Sheila Dixit has announced a series of measures including a 24-hour special control room service for women in distress.

"I think it will go a long way in containing crime against women. We will consult all stakeholders before finalising the draft law," says Dixit.

The incident has triggered widespread outrage across India, with protesters taking to the streets and social media while India's main opposition party has condemned the government's approach to violence against women.

"What is Delhi police doing? What is the government doing? There are no words left to condemn this," said Opposition leader Sushma Swaraj, who is demanding the death penalty for rape convicts.

The number of sexual assaults on women in India has risen consistently in recent decades, and women rights campaigners say the government is not doing enough to prevent such incidents.

"Our streets reflect an extreme misogyny.  Women are objectified, harassed or sexually assaulted all the time, but no one does anything about it" Brinda Karat, a prominent communist politician and women's rights campaigner, told AFP.

"Why should it take such a horrendous crime to wake us up to the fact that crimes against women keep increasing while conviction rates remain very low?"

The conviction rate for rape cases is in India is currently around 26 percent a year. According to the police figures, New Delhi is the setting for more rapes than any other Indian city, with nearly 635 rape cases reported during 2012.

This article was updated November 30, -0001 00:00 AM
VIDEO