This is yet another day when I’m ashamed to call myself an Indian; another brutal rape in the country’s capital – Delhi. Only this time, the victim is a 5 year old girl.
I cannot really describe what barbarism has taken place. Therefore, I’m going to quote excerpts from an Indian newspaper, The Times Of India:
“> A 5-year-old girl who was raped by a neighbor brought to a hospital on Wednesday (17th April, 2013) with severe injuries and a candle and a 200ml hair oil bottle shoved into her vagina.
> Doctors say her external genitals may be damaged beyond repair.
> Severe infection in the genitals.
> The Doctors have found strangulation marks on her neck and other injuries on her body including bite marks.”
It makes me shudder to think of what trauma she must be going through right now. But being in India, I better get used to such crimes because its only four months ago, on December 16, 2012, when another girl was assaulted. She was a 23-year-old physiotherapy intern, named Nirbhaya by the media, who was gang-raped by six men on a moving bus and who succumbed to death 13 days later.
“She was found with injury marks all over her body and only 5% of her intestines remaining inside of her abdomen. A doctor at the hospital later said that the “rod (a rusted L-shaped, iron rod) was inserted into her and it was pulled out with so much force that the act brought out her intestines also. That is probably the only thing that explains such severe damage to her intestines.” (Source: Wikipedia)
I fail to understand why the Indian Government is so hesitant when it comes to awarding death sentence to the perpetrators of such heinous crimes. Are we so forgiving?!
The Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh, has expressed deep regret over the matter and is ‘deeply disturbed’ with the recent chain of events. As far as I remember, he was ‘deeply disturbed’ after December 16, 2012 as well and look what change it brought! The Government did introduce an anti-rape bill soon after the December 16, 2012 ordeal but we are all witness to how effective that proved to be. If the Legislative and the Judiciary is doing its work why isn’t the Executive?
It is so frustrating that in spite of so many laws, such crimes continue unabated. Maybe that is what the problem is -MANY LAWS. There are so many laws in the Indian Constitution that not one is applied to the desired effect. The Indian Government, needs to understand that regret is not what we need. We need answers. The victim is subject to life-long mental and physical trauma while the accused gets off the hook so easily. We need to know why a man who attempts to rape a 9-year-old girl gets away with only five years of imprisonment and a fine of mere Rs. 6000. Is attempt to rape or eve-teasing or as much as looking at a woman in a way that makes her uncomfortable any less that an actual assault? Why should we be subjected to such cruelties simply because we happen to be females?
Its sad that India is full of parents who instead of supporting their children who happen to be victims of such heinous crimes, blame them for provoking the man. An assault victim is laughed at by the society and is told that she should cover up properly, that she shouldn’t step out of the house after dark, that she shouldn’t look a man in the eye lest she should give him the wrong signal. Basically, she is told to stop living her life – and the Constitution says Right To Equality and Right to Freedom is Fundamental. Hah! Hypocrites.
In this case of sexual assault, the police added a new twist. When the victim was finally discovered after three day of her assault, three excruciatingly painful days, the policemen bribed the parents (as told by the parents of the victim) with Rs. 2000 (about $37) to keep mum about the matter and be thankful that their daughter was alive.
Indian mentality and moral policing is a deadly combination. And come to think of it, these two forces join together almost every time. The guardians of the victims are showered with insensitive remarks from the cops and the so-called civil society. In India, if a girl above the age of 11 goes missing, she is very conveniently said to have eloped. Policemen passing lewd comments about an assault victim to her face is another thing that India has often seen. This time, an ACP had the guts to slap the women protestors, one of whom allegedly sustained a serious injury to her ear. As a result, he was suspended. Although I suspect that the reason for his suspension was that this was caught on camera and was being aired on all news channels. Had this gone unreported, the ACP would still be reporting to his office every morning. The point is that these men-in-uniforms are appointed to protect the women of their country, not harass them. How can we expect any sort of help from them if they continue doing this?
The sad part is that people are dependent on the Government for a radical change. No matter how many times we say that the change starts with us, it is an accepted fact that the people will not be able to do what they want to do without the necessary Government support.
Right now, at this very moment, many Indians are thinking if India is for the people, by the people, of the people or if it is for the criminals, by the criminals, of the criminals? It is yet another wake up call for the people we call our ‘Leaders’. If they don’t act now, I’m afraid they never will.
The Times Of India