Monthly Archives: March 2013

Rape, the rapist, the raped, gang rapists, the society, Oh Society!

Rape is the violation of a woman’s rights.

Rape is the violation of a female’s body.

Rape only proves the male’s physical superiority.

Rape is nothing but the exercise of brute force.

Rape seeks a criminal outlet for pent up sexual desire.

Rape is a crime that needs to be punished.

A rapist does not realize that he has a right only to his own body.

A rapist ignores the rights of the female concerned.

A rapist lacks self esteem and self confidence.

A rapist has a false view of masculinity.

A rapist steals the freedom of a woman.

A rapist always commits a criminal act.

The raped is a poor innocent child, girl or woman.

The raped has the beauty of youth and is attractive.

The raped is physically abused and mentally traumatized.

The raped feels deserted from all the values of her life.

The raped feels the collapse of the world around her.

The raped feels the isolation and cold air around her.

Gang Rapists do not know how to court a girl.

Gang Rapists have a contorted view of masculinity.

Gang Rapists think its fun, but they are vile.

Gang Rapists seek recognition from their fellow rapists.

Gang Rapists stretch the despair and shock to the victim.

Gang Rapists need to be meted a more severe punishment than a rapist.

Society looks at the woman and points a finger at her.

Society sees not the man who has committed the crime.

Society turns a blind eye and ear to what has happened.

Society has many laws that guarantee her rights.

Society fails to fulfill its commitment to protect her rights.

Society has deserted her and the raped is forlorn.

Oh Society! Laws are useless, if she cannot be protected.

Oh Society! Your law enforcing authorities are full of prejudices.

Oh Society! You need to wake up to today’s reality.

Oh Society! Don’t be backward and archaic.

Oh Society! Don’t turn a blind eye and blame the women

Oh Society! Your laws guarantee her rights. Ensure it and deliver on your commitments.

The culture of violence against women

India is considered the worst place for women. Indian woman have a tough position in life. Right from birth they are subjugated to a subordinate position in life, in the family and in society and are denied women rights. How is this subordinate position documented?

  •  A cultural preference for male children together with a fear of dowry payments has led to sex selective abortions and abortion of over 12 million girls over the past 3 decades and a subsequently distorted male-female ratio of 1000 men to 940 females at the national level with some states having much more drastic ratios. These developments have been possible in spite of the Indian “Prenatal Diagnostic Techniques Act 1994.”
  • On the education front cultural prejudices in favor of males has meant that girls chances  of education is definitely less than for boys. Though good 97% of girls get primary education, almost 17.9% of females do not have Secondary or High school education.
  • Child marriage is still prevalent even though India has promulgated many laws that forbid the same, the latest legislation being “The Prohibition of Child Marriage Act, 2006”. According to the International Center for research on women 47% of girls are married before they are 18.
  • Dowry related harassment  of women who do not satisfy dowry demands and brutal assault partially through burning is still common in different parts of Indian society.
  • Widows even today are shunned in many parts of Indian society and once a woman becomes a widow she is often allocated a subordinate position within her family and by society at large.

The reasons for these developments are manifold but two fundamental patterns emerge as being the root cause of this situation:

  • Outdated customs are ingrained in the psyche of large sections of Indian society. So India urgently needs to start a “Social and Cultural Change Drive” so that many social practices are seen in the perspective of the 21st century.
  • India has an abundance of legal regulations protecting the rights of children and women in many issues. But India has weak records on law enforcement, so that de-facto women’s rights are not ensured.

http://foreignpolicyblogs.com/2012/12/31/confronting-violence-against-women-in-india/

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/jul/23/why-india-bad-for-women?intcmp=239

http://www.icrw.org/search/node/widows%20state%20in%20india

India’s Anti Rape Bill

Wow, that was faster than I thought possible. Sexual offenders guilty of rape, stalking, voyeurism, acid attacks among others will in future have to reckon with up to 20 years imprisonment, and even life imprisonment or death sentence for repeat offenders. The law forsees that 18 years is the age of consent for sex. The Indian Lower House (Lok Sabha) has just passed an anti rape bill which de facto amounts to an amendment of diverse clauses in various penal laws and regulations. The bill is meant to be a clear deterrent signal that Indian society will not tolerate such crimes. The bill still needs to be passed by the Rajya Sabha (Upper House) which however is not considered problematic.

Well this is definitely a milestone worth registering. It looks like the steadfastness of the various demonstrators, the vehemence of many women’s rights activists, the public outrage and the international reaction to the sexual excesses of the recent past have apparently had their impact.

Now that the Indian legislative organs have amended laws so as to prevent sexual assault, it is now up to the executive and law implementing organs to start doing their job.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Anti-rape-Bill-gets-Lok-Sabha-nod/articleshow/19072511.cms

http://www.indianexpress.com/news/lok-sabha-passes-antirape-bill-that-threatens-offenders-with-life-in-jail-to-death/1090413/0

http://www.hindustantimes.com/India-news/NewDelhi/Lok-Sabha-passes-anti-rape-bill/Article1-1028961.aspx

A Swiss tourist is gang raped

Such news is a sad testimony that proves the need for more urgent and fundamental action to prevent sexual assault in India. This time it is a Swiss tourist who is raped and tragically right in front of her husband. Apparently there are enough men in India who consider it necessary to show off their sexual prowess by resorting to gang rape. This is tragic to say the very least!!

This is a clear indication that the limited natural interaction between males and females as prevalent in bigger sections of Indian society is leading to suppressed sexual desire. A good part of this pent-up sexual energy seeks rape as an outlet. This could explain the high statistics of one rape every twenty minutes. All this really urgently calls for introducing social education to promote a natural interaction between males and females. After all India is economically not in the 19th century!!

http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/16/swiss-tourist-gang-raped-in-central-india/

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/16/us-india-rape-idUSBRE92F06M20130316

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia/2013/03/2013316115959819410.html

 

International Womens Day 2013

Happy International Women’s Day everybody! On International Woman’s day I greet all the demonstrators of Delhi and all the many other cities of India. By protesting not just once but many many times you have made a hole in the fabric of silence that prevails over India on gender issues.

Woman of India have to stand up against the violence and brutality (be it physical, sexual or psychological in nature) that they are exposed to. They have to start talking, protesting, denying, exposing and decrying abuse. Breaking the culture of silence means making society aware of the imbalances that prevail and saying “I am a woman, a citizen of this country like every other man and i have rights too and I will not tolerate this any more”.

Let us hope that the Indian Presidents good wishes are taken more seriously by Indian authorities and society in future.

Four rapes a day and poor forensic track records

The number of rape cases in New Delhi alone is horrific. There is the case of a XII standard girl who is abducted and raped, a minor rape victim who immolates herself, the attempted rape of a 11 standard girl alone at home just to mention a few. According to statistics there were 572 rapes in 2011 alone, followed by 706 rapes in 2012 reflecting a 23 % rise against 2011 while between January and February 15th 2013 in total 181 rape cases were reported reflecting about 4 rapes a day.

A first conviction and a sentence of a 60 year old school guard for a sexual offense has been announced. That is a good start. But the authorities need to bear in mind that establishing the acquaintanceship between the victim and the rapist in no way reduces the tangibility of rape as a crime. Poor forensic track records are a clear indication that one of the first issues that the law and order authorities need to address is the introduction, use and implementation of modern forensic tools and methods in their investigations. Legal and policing reforms are absolutely necessary if the situation is to be tackled.

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/60-year-old-school-guard-gets-7-year-jail-for-molesting-child/articleshow/18682626.cms?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=tweets

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/delhi/Rape-cases-double-in-Delhi-despite-campaigns/articleshow/18831064.cms

The struggle to keep a female child

Mitu Khurana a woman like any other in India. And yet her painful journey through the prejudices and contorted perceptions of Indian society are an eye opener. She like her husband and his family is educated. She is a doctor and yet! She is tricked into having an ultra sound sex determination test during her pregnancy. She was bullied to abort the female fetus (twins) she was carrying when her husband knew they were going to be females. She refused, stood up for her convictions and decided to have her twins in spite of all the family pressure. She filed a law suit.

Female foeticide and infanticide is barbaric. I am a pro-lifer. Education should widen one’s horizon and make one receptive for other views. It is tragic to know that education has in this case not opened the eyes of her husband’s family. As a doctor one knows enough about the chromosomes and that the male determines the gender of a new born. This development really needs to be stopped.

http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/dr.-mitu-khurana-the-defender-of-indias-baby-girls/

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex-selective_abortion