Absurdity of absurdities: A man accused of raping and gouging out one of the eyes of a hospital co-worker today asked the court to consider a lighter sentence because he was prepared to marry the victim. The woman was not moved. "He should be hanged as an example," was her response. But the fact that the judge allowed the motion has caused some soul-searching in the legal community, according to this article in the Indian Express.
My question is: Is India making strides against violence against women? Do the climbing statistics on reported rapes indicate that women are more prepared to register complaints--presumably because they entertain some hope of successful prosecution--or that the police have become more sensitive and efficient in undertaking these kinds of cases?
India is in the throes of a sexual revolution, no doubt. But certainly women have a long fight ahead of them if judges have little more understanding of rape than the Shiv Sena, which recently reiterated its ever-popular "she was asking for it" line in response to a daylight rape in Mumbai.
Tuesday, May 03, 2005
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I guess the long drawn out judicial process helps many rapists go scot free . The psychological torture undergone by the victim often drives many women to suicide . I feel therefore that sexual crimes should be tried by special courts and the death penalty given to rapists . This particular rape which involved great cruelty on the part of the rapist deserves exemplary punishment.
The reason why most rape or sexual abuse cases in India are not reported is the societal stance that the victim has somehow been defiled and that she has now lost her 'honour' due to being violated. The necessity is to have sensitive handling of such cases, where the victim is protected not just from any further abuse, but from opprobrium by society at large. The way the MAMC rape case in Delhi was handled is a case in point. One wishes that all rape cases could be handled thus.
Of course, we live in proximity to -- and share an identity with -- a country where a bunch of gang-rapists have recently been acquitted by the High Court: the Mukhtaran Bai rape case in Pakistan. It will be a while before justice comes to this part of the world.
I had a long misunderstanding that an education leads a person to have a better mental mapping that females are an "equals". Recently, one of my knowledgeable friends from a reputed institute called "IIT" passed this statement : "If a girl goes out after 8:00pm wih her friends then she is totally characterless".
If this is how he thinks then i wonder if he will ever step forward to save a girl being harassed or raped aftre 8:00pm.
This kind of a thought is more of a very deadly virus gripping India and can be declared an epidemic.
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