By- Dilip Dutta
It is official that in India a rape takes place currently every 22 minutes and my calculator gives 65.45454545 in a 24 hour period and in one year 786.45454544 of the fair gender damaged for life. These are the cases that reported to the police. I am pretty certain there are many more unreported cases and victims are suffering silently. And what about the male rapes especially in the army and paramilitary services? Why am I making a fuss about the security establishment? These things go with the jobs. And of course the wives of the juniors to their superiors on a platter to climb ranks. Same goes with civil administration to some extent I have been told.
The gang rape of Jyoti Singh in a moving coach is Delhi and post rape the seventeen year rapist whose religious teachings tell him that the infidels have to submit and women in particular and as Jyoti resisted he rodded her puncturing her entrails as she dared to resist him earlier. The irony here is that his accomplishes were infidels to him and he should not make friends with infidels! No wonder Mohandas Karamdas Gandhi advised the females of his religious persuasion to submit without resistance to the Yavans.
Rape in India is as ancient as the Aryan civilisation. The most famous is the rape of Draupodi of course. Modern Indraprastha rulers have spread their wings and have created satellite capitals and these vassal kings (controlled by the Indian Constitution) tries to emulate Dorjudhyon and many of them have criminal charges of rapes and even killing their victims after raping.
Young and not so young women from Assam’s neighbourhood have been labelled as having loose morals and ‘asking for it’ and having been victimised in Indian cities and inside trains for very many years.
From my personal experience of travelling through the length and breadth of India with my pretty you wife in my youth, I must say my experiences were quite pleasant. Readers must keep that in mind that most of my travels were using ordinary public services. As a simpleton Assamese perhaps I was very naive to go to areas in many Indian remote places and metropolises where in those days perhaps locals even avoided going unless there was an absolute necessity. And with the state of affairs these days even remote villages in India is not safe anymore. As I write this, news of a Swiss tourist couple beaten up and then gang raped at Datia in Madhya Pradesh by eight persons coming in. I am not surprised as there is Dent and mend perception prevails in the society vocalised by a West Bengal Politician following Joyti’s rape incident. How convenient, the Madhya Pradesh Home Minister has blamed the Swiss couple rather than the criminal countrymen of his for their crimes for the rape of a guest in India. What could he say any way, where there are rapists amongst lawmakers and law keepers and the arm of law can never touch them, why should the common people behave any differently?
With the brutal rape of Joyti a student of Physiotherapy, the middle class India woke up from their slumber the victim being one of them. However, the middle class is middle class. After all they have to Cow Tow to politicians. And politicians in turn have to protect the security forces. Proof is of course is in eating the pudding. Justice Verma Commissions recommendation to include rapes committed under the AFSPA umbrella by security personals have been excluded from the Parliamentary Bill on rapes. Moreover rapes within marriage have also been omitted for it. Dare I say that it is to protect males from a particular religion which dictates women to be ever ready and if refuses to do so, the husband can beat her and force himself on his wife on demand which is religiously legal. Lo and behold even the Indian Penal code cannot touch him because it is sanctioned by the book of his religion. The religion and the country insist that women get equal rights! On the other side of the coin, Indians have scores of very powerful Devi including filmy Santoshima becoming a celebrated deity and the SIPERWOMEN Indira who received adulation as Indira is India by none other than Assamese Indian Deva Kanta Barua the self-proclaimed aristocrat of Assam! Most striking thing of late is the widow of Rajiv Gandhi, the de facto ruler of India and her brood have shamefully sealed their lips and closed their eyes so that the Carry on Rape is like a hilarious sexist saga and can be accommodate! After all the Great Jawharlal is alleged to have raped a Saintly Sanyasini during the late fifties at his official residence.
I would not have spent my precious time in putting my thoughts into words if Assamese and girls from Assam’s neighbourhood would not have suffered in the hands of depraved Indian rapists and Indian constitution has not sanctioned rape as a weapon of war.
Let me digress here a tiny bit on an analytical narrative why rape is becoming common place in India these days.
Eve teasing language has some vulgar expressions which denote women folk as mere objects with words like, Maal/Cheez/Shikaar although perhaps largely in a light hearted manner, but, some of these teasings graduate to mental rape. The practice of teasing must have been going on for a very long time.
From my limited knowledge of India, me growing up in the back waters of remote Assam, I believe the rapes have become rampant only in the recent decades. Although I am not a social scientist, the weight of my greying hair carries some credence I hope and in my interpretation of this social evil, I would not like to see anywhere; however, I have little doubt that India is reaping the seeds she has sown. Let us retrace our steps and remind ourselves of the incidence in the great Indian epic Mahabharata where Draupodi was de-robed. Yes it may be a just a story (But, is it?) does not it expose the Indian mentality from the days of yore? Then Ramayana, even their Lord Rama could not rise above human frailties and accept that the his wife could have been raped or slept with Ravana ! Let me use the superfast forward button and take you to post 1947 India and look at the Indian sexism through the Bombay Film as the mirror. It does not take time to see how the fair gender has been brought down from mythological deity status to Maal/Cheej/ Shikar object and currently to Item Girl label. With India shinning and Dollars abound, imported Caucasian uninhibited flesh, the Indian mind set is now stark naked in front the whole world today. No wonder violent rape scenes are quite common Indian films committed by goons, politicians, law enforcers and by common people.
To top the bill, is the sickening female foetus abortion and infanticide and carried out by the mothers/family members of those unfortunate foetuses and infants! The result is the imbalance of the male and female ratio.
The testosterone surging in the body of Indian youths or not so young ones, it is no surprise that the depravity and the ‘acceptable behaviour’ has uplifted the rape statistics. However, just think of a normal Indian male with suppressed desire to bed a willing or unwilling girl will behave if his near one is eve-teased, groped or raped would do. If he is HIMMATWALA he is going to break all the bone of the perpetrators in keeping with stories of Bomaby Films is very likely. The same person more than likely than not, be quite at ease and eve-tease/grope/rape if gets the chance as his moral fibres having the genetic imprint of the Indian mind set. I must of course be fair, as mentioned before as females are becoming a scarcity for him to find a girl to marry he has to fulfil his volcanic sexual urge. He could have openly gone to a prostitute, but, prostitution is illegal in India and carries a huge social stigma of visiting the dark back streets where sold or kidnapped girls are forced into illegal prostitution.
SO WHAT DO the sexually unfulfilled males do to mitigate his sexual arousals?
Rape girls from Assam and her neighbours of course. Most of them are enticed away with false pretences only to be sold. Of course NAÏVE girls from the region going away for higher studies or looking for a job hardly knowing the dark secrets of violent India and becomes prey to rapist or to suitors getting married then likely to be abused for the rest of their lives and their parents have to save them from being killed by keeping her hubby happy by fulfilling his never ending demands by paying the ransom -Indians like to call a dowry!
Why did I say NAÏVE ? Fortunately our traditional girls are not Babli Baadmash Hai type. Our back waters do have nasty pieces with dangly thing between their legs wanting to make use of it forcefully, but, these are exceptions. Eve-teasing existed before and now days vulgar mouthing is abound. What a far cry from the not so vulgar eve teasing portrayed in the Assamese Film Itu Xitu Bohutu !
As far as I am aware, the incidence of the rape of a foreigner is Assam has not been repeated again. This incidence happened in the sixties in the Kahrghuli hills of Guwahati. There lived a white couple and the young wife perhaps felt quite safe to have a care free life she was used to in the west in serene Assam those days. Kharghilians those days were not used to see a grown up woman in skirt and her beautiful body obviously attracted attention from the youths. Apparently she was asked to clothe modestly in keeping with ONLY Mekhela Sador worn Kharghilian womenfolks those days. Perhaps the foreigner felt that ‘What rights these NATIVES have to dictate me on what I wear?” and she ignored the advisory. This must have been like the Red Cape to a fighting bull. The local Goondas came to the Kharghuilians aid and with the justification, she is asking for it some of them stalked her and one day they raped her. This incidence shocked Guwahati and I was not aware of any other rapes till 1974. During the Khanapara session of Indian Congress that year, the youth congress wing were having their hay day under the leadership of Sanjay Gandhi and some cunning Assam youths joined the organisation in droves and soon had a big following in Assam. Like busy bees thousands of youths came to play their parts at the bee hive at Khanapara. To attend to their health needs graduates from Gauhati Medical College were recruited. Apart from some different coloured bottles of cold and cough mixture, Sulfadiazine, Enteroquinol, few packs of cotton wool, gauze and some Iodine, those medical booths were stocked with thousands of Niordh condomes. Thanks to the robust health of the youths instead of needed the medicaments their needs were greater for the Nirodhs. I have been told by a Doctor friend of mine who one of the recruits to provide medical services; every evening by 10 PM all the condoms were handed out. I am sure those were not blown up to use as party balloons. Perhaps many a female activist enjoyed their carnal desire willingly, but, some of the girls from the hinterland of Assam having no clue of the realities of life could have imagined what goes in those ‘Political Jumborees’ were trapped and preyed upon and raped.
The earlier mentioned outrageous comment Dented and Painted attitude on rapes by none other than the son of current President of India Pranab Mukherjee, Abhijeet Mukherjee a West Bengal Congress politician, I am sure his wise crack indeed surmises the all revealing Indian attitude.
However middle class India was aroused by one of theirs being brutalised by their own monster countrymen. The Judicial report of Justice Verma must be lauded by even non-Indians as job well done despite political constraints he had to be acutely aware of. However, the moral fabric of this gentleman has shone through when he included Armed Forces Special Power Act of India within the purview of his recommendations. As Assam has been under the Indian military’s mercy since 1958, and it is open secret that Indian security services have been using rape as the weapon of war since Operation Bajrang. College Student Raju Barua, teenager Bhanimai, newly wed Renu and mother of two Junu are few names which came to be known as the victims of rape by Indian troopers. They represent many thousands of Assamese women folk who became victims of the Indian soldiers roaming free in Assam. For the Indian establishment it is more important to keep the soldiers content and destruction of the lives of our women is a collateral consequence to make India prevail. Before some clever clock shouts out. “Hey, it is Assam’s Chief Minister who begged AFSPA to be retained” I have no problem in accepting that. CMs of Assam doing such a thing is entirely plausible, as, all Assam CM’s have been known to be stooges of India. (Mahendra Mohan Choudhury attempted to put Assam first before India who was removed from the post by an irate Indira in a minute long phone call.)
So some compliant Assamese have no qualms in AFSPA being in place, rapes by Indian soldiers and Indian parliamentary process making sure that AFSPA’s power is hidden from public scrutiny quoting other criminal Acts in force where rapist Indian soldiers can be taken to task without removing or modifying the AFSPA.
Let me stop moaning about Assam.
If India really meant to have effective legal measures to punish rapists it needed to have a far draconian law then the Bill they have just passed on which India’s Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said. “We have tried to bring in a strong law, which is pro-women and will act as a deterrent,” If it is to be deterrent why did not the Parliamentarians make the anti rape Act in line with justice Verma’s recommendations or make it extremely powerful to be a real deterrent?
If you are an Indian read the Justice Verma’s recommendations and what this bill the parliamentarians have just passed. Is it not a bad joke?
Do I have to say more? Yes I am afraid.
While the American First Lady awards for Jyoti’s courage posthumously (read here http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/345587), the Chinese take on the matter has put Indian democracy on the dock (read here http://www.thehindu.com/news/indias-rape-epidemic-problem-of-democracy-says-chinese-media/article4539073.ece).
Joy of Jai Ho Indian democracy.