India’s economy is one of the fastest-growing in the world. Several schemes and campaigns are run by Govt. and Non-Govt. organisations to make India best for the living. The Digital India programme, a programme with a vision to transform India into a digitally empowered society and knowledge economy.Incredible India, an international tourism campaign to promote tourism in India.Beti Bachao Beti Padhao and Corruption Free India etc. But does its growth include everyone? Do we need only these schemes and campaigns to make this county best for the living? What about rape free India? When will our society realise the importance of rape free India? Isn’t it meaningless to make India incredible, digital and corruption free without making it rape free?
Rape is one of the most common crimes against women in India. The way women are treated in this country is clear-cut evidence that our entire system has failed. A 2017 report by Global Peace Index had claimed India to be the fourth most dangerous country for women travelers. A UN Committee on the Rights of the Child said one in three rape victims in India are minors. Recently, the Ministry of Women and Child Development highlighted that a total of 1, 04,976 cases were registered under the POSCO Act, 2012, between 2014-2016. And there would be thousands of cases which were not registered due to social and other reasons. In the past one year, more than 450 minor girls were raped in the capital city of India alone. In our society, many minor girls are becoming the victim of perverse lust and brutality of men.
No doubt blunders can happen to anyone, anytime, but the worst part is that such incidents don’t shock us anymore. But, the irony is the rapist does not any stigma in the society where the survivor has to bear the scar for rest of her life. The religion, caste, region, status, of the rapist or the victim, should never be considered. It is of no upshot to which political party or religion rapists are associated with. Rape is a crime against humankind. No religion and no political party are greater than the model of humanity. Rape is an inhumane act and who rapes is inhuman. Whosoever plans a rape or helps in planning, destroying the evidence or keeps quiet about it, ceases to be human. They do not deserve to live and should not be allowed to live anymore.
I don’t understand why people are confused? Why are they divided, few supporting rape victims, condemning the rape and murder and few are supporting the rapists? A large number of people even made speculations that maybe these are just conspiracies against accused persons. How can India sleep when such minors are being raped and brutally killed? What happened to Asifa of Jammu and Kashmir is a crime against humanity. The minor was abducted, kept sedated and gang-raped repeatedly for days. She was drugged and not given food the entire time. According to investigators, the victim after being drugged and raped repeatedly inside a temple in Rassana village of Kathua District was murdered. Just before her head was bashed in with a rock, one of the police officer asked the killer to wait so he could rape the child one more time, according to the police charge-sheet submitted in Court. The body of the girl was recovered from Rassana forest in Kathua, a week after she went missing while grazing horses in the forest area. In another rape incident in Unnao Utter Pradesh where a girl accused a BJP MLA of raping her along with their aides, lost her father in a battle for justice. The 55-year-old man who was fighting for justice for his daughter was arrested by the Unnao Police and died in custody.
If we cannot rise above these shameful boundaries of religion or political support, we do not have the right to call ourselves as humans. We could not save Asifa but at least we can fight for her justice. Let us not cease to be humans by supporting any vile rapists. Let us not only camping against rapes, rather fight till justice prevails. We all should stand with the victims and their families to fight against this crime. The burden of the crime should fall on the criminal and not on the victim.
(The author is a student at The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, Delhi.)
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