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Delhi rape crisis

Delhi was officially crowned the “Rape Capital” of India, and the horrors continue. Delhi has the highest number of rape cases, surpassing 600 per year, and this is only for cases that are reported – many go unreported due to social stigma associated with rape. It is absolutely disgusting. So on average, 2 women are raped per day in Delhi alone, and that is just for reported rapes. Per statistics, for every rape reported in India, 50 cases go unreported.

On Dec 16, a woman was beaten and brutally raped, so much so that her vagina and small intestine are completely ruined, she is still in the hospital fighting death but will not even be able to eat her whole life. The woman, a medical student, was at a bus station with her friend after watching a movie. After waiting for 30 mins they decided to take a private bus home. They got tickets from the driver and got into the bus that had 5 passengers. The passengers and driver knew each other, and passed a lewd comment about the girl. When her male friend protested, they hit him on the head with an iron rod. When the girl tried to save him, one of them beat both of them with iron rods and the rest followed suit. They then took her to the rear of the bus and took turns raping her. She defended herself and bit the hand of one of the rapists. He got so angry that he decided to teach her a lesson. After raping, they put a long iron rod inside her and pulled it out with so much force that her intestines came out. For the life of me I still cannot figure out how someone can put a rod inside someone’s private part and pull out an intestine, how is that even possible, what immense pain that girl must have gone through, the pain and the horror. The rapists then dropped off both of them naked on the outskirts – some reports say they threw out the guy before they raped the girl, and the girl was thrown out elsewhere. Someone saw and called the police, for one hour nobody helped the girl or covered her up. She was bleeding profusely and lost 1 litre of blood – 20% of the human body blood content. It is so horrifying and disturbing to read, I cannot stop thinking and feeling my blood boil at the plight of women in India. I feel like puking, so so so so terrible. I cannot imagine the pain the girl went through. It makes me think of how horrible those men must be to do this to her. What animals we reside among.

Apparently the bus wasn’t even supposed to be running, the men were out just for a joyride. They robbed some other guy an hour before who got on the bus and dropped him off in some other location. The men were drunk. The driver was actually hired to pick up and drop off school children – God knows if he did anything to the poor kids. While they were raping the woman in a moving bus, they passed three police patrols, nobody stopped the bus even though buses with tinted glasses are not allowed in Delhi.

Over the last few years, India has progressed at a very fast pace. People have more money and live a much better lifestyle. More women are working and dressing the way they want. However, the men are getting worse. Cases of foeticide, dowry demands, rape, etc. continue. Foeticide is when a female fetus is aborted because she is female. Dowry is when women’s parents have to give into monetary demands of the groom’s family on account of marriage. Due to dowry many families don’t want a female child, instead they want a male “heir”. Since the population of men now exceeds women, rape cases and atrocities on women are prevalent.

The general social stigma is that women should not “get raped” by not staying out late, wearing clothes that “cover” them, and not getting too friendly with men. A research by Tehelka goes into the minds of police officers, its horrifying how everyone blames the woman. How about shifting the focus on men? Men are the ones that need to control themselves. A lot of men in India grow up with an inflated ego and sense that they are superior to women, it is okay to commit atrocities because women have no rights. Throwing acid on their faces, beating them drunk everyday, etc. It continues. Who are the men to decide what a woman should do, wear, and stay outside till what time? Why aren’t they treated as brutally? What are they teaching their children, that a woman shouldn’t wear revealing clothing or stay out late, if they do its okay to rape? Why aren’t the cops showing the accused faces to media? Let their faces be unveiled, and let them deal with the repercussions. Had the rapists been from privileged families, I doubt this would have gotten as much media coverage.

The Delhi rape crisis has gotten many politicians to react and enact rape laws. This has been going on for many years though, and there are as many as 20 cases filed against politicians themselves. Delhi is India’s capital, but ranks highest in lack of safety especially for women. When politicians cannot take care of their own city, how can they manage the whole country? Every part of India’s “democracy” is full of corruption. In one case, a raped woman went to the police station to report, the cops raped her right there!

In a way I am grateful that I am not in India. Reading this, I don’t intend to go back to live. I always thought of Delhi as a modern city, but when I met my sister last year she told me horror stories. If you hit a car, its best to run because the car driver/owner may shoot you, if a car hits you, do the same. While the US is also bad with the recent shooting event and nani murders in NYC, I feel safe going out and I know that if I dial 911 I will have help. In India, there is absolutely nothing you can do. Cases go on for years, cops don’t write reports, there is so much social stigma associated with rape, more often than not people remark that the woman must be at fault.

I have gone out at 3am or 4am alone to the nearby Duane Reade store to pick up milk, and have felt completely safe, but its also because my area has people all the time especially on weekends. I do agree to some extent that since India does not have strong rape laws, and cases go on for years, it makes sense to self-preserve by taking some precautions – staying away from unsafe locations, not staying out late in certain areas, dressing conservatively to prevent eye-teasing if it is bothersome, etc. However, there needs to be a change in general mindset and culture, and very strict punishment for such crimes. The only way to make the country safer for women is to have strong punishment, and act on them fast, that will put the fear of God in men. Women NEED to be safe in their own home and country, its not an option. Rapes should be countered by castrating the accused in public and then hanging them till death. I say bring in medieval times for rapists where punishment for crime was brutal, hang their heads for all to see.

It really makes me worry about my parenting, my responsibilities, how important it is for me to teach my kids to respect women, and have a sense of equality. I really hope I am able to inculcate this in them, and hopefully the traditional Indian feeling that somehow women “provoke” men is something my kids will stay far far away from.

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