Pastor Shivanan Bhadai quoted from the Leviticus, which states that anyone who intentionally kills another should also die, as he called for the return of the hangman in T&T. He did so when he addressed participants in a candlelight march in Barrackpore, in memory of kidnapping and murder victim Andrea Bharatt on Friday night,
Bhadai, the pastor at the Throne Room of God church, was among scores of people who marched from the Barrackpore Police Station to the Daren Ganga Recreational Ground. He called on the government to hold a referendum on the death penalty as criminals have free rein in the country.Part of the problem, Badhai said, was the police’s inability to catch the suspects in many crimes. When they do catch suspects, the courts allowed them to return on the streets to continue their attacks on the public.“We need to have the hangman come back in this country. We need a referendum. We cannot depend on the politicians, we do not know what they are doing concerning this. The entire country is in fear, people are crying and they cannot sleep at night. They do not know when to go and when to come, they are very, very fearful, and something needs to be done,” Badhai said.He was critical of the government’s management of the country and appealed for Friday’s march not to be the last, as he appealed for citizens to take a stand for themselves, wives and daughters. The organiser of the march, Varold Maharaj, said she was surprised by the turnout at the march since the invitation had only been posted on Facebook a few hours earlier in the day. She said as a mother, wife, daughter and sister, she is demanding that the country be taken back from the criminals.
Maharaj recalled the kidnapping and murder of Ashanti Riley after she boarded a PH taxi last November and said like Bharatt and other victims, she would not be forgotten.“It is time we band together and show our leaders what we are made of. We will not accept this last one. There will be no more, we have had enough. You know that Trinidadian culture where we forget, we will not forget. Andrea’s life will not go in vain, Ashanti’s life will not go in vain, and all the others came before,” she said.Maharaj said women should not have to be afraid to sit in a taxi, share their whereabouts in everything they do.The Barrackpore march is one on a series of protests that have been taking place since Bharatt’s body was found down a precipice in Heights of Aripo on Thursday afternoon.
In Rio Claro, residents met at the roundabout and prayed for victims of kidnappings, human trafficking and domestic abuse. They also spent part of the night singing bhajans and hymns.