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Women’s Day Is Only A Farce!!!!

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Also published on Mar 8th 2012 

By Leslie Tripathy

Nobody has the right to violate a girl. And it is an abominable development that rape victims are held responsible for their horrendous plight. It is shameful that some men think it is acceptable to gang rape a girl. How sickening? They deserve the severest of punishments. It is ridiculous, that most often the victim is blamed for inviting this type of distress upon herself. What a society?  What do these men think? It is their birthright or a fundamental right to take advantage of a woman? This plight of a woman has been very well justified in the movie, ‘The Accused’ starring Jodie Foster as Sarah Tobias, where she was gang raped. And when she was being gang raped in a bar cum restaurant, men were shown cheering the act when the poor Sarah was crying for help. Later, onlookers justified the act, saying she deserved it as she had decided to wear skimpy clothes and was flirting with men and was dancing seductively. But since when did men start to think they can force themselves on woman when she says ‘No’?

Victim Blaming should stop
Few recent events have shed light on the lowly mindset of some men who think women have no right to enjoy or wear short dresses. And if they do, they are sending signals to be raped. How tragic! It is not only some sick, perverted minds who are thinking so, even the upholders of honour and security of our society are no less behind. Recently a senior officer in Noida revealed the name of the victim, which is against the law set by Supreme Court of India. And as if that was not enough the senior official went on to give his judgement on the girl's character, citing that the girl studying in tenth grade who had been gang raped had welcomed it on herself, as she had downed some vodka shots with the gang, who she claimed were her friends. This dribble by the official was met with outrage.
The story does not end there. The vicious cycle of blaming the woman keeps getting worse, even in cosmopolitan cities, like when a girl in her 30s was gang raped, the police went on to question her morals. How disgusting! Another controversy spilled around when the State chief minister, went on record stating the rape victim's version was nothing but lies to scandalise her government. How ironic?

We might be in the 21st century yet the thinking of society is still in the ‘stone age’. Victims of sexual abuse and   harassments are judged by the clothes they wear and made to feel guilty for inviting trouble upon themselves. This is ridiculous!!! Indian women in large numbers protested this mindset when they participated in the ‘Slut Walk’. Last year millions of women across the world participated in the SlutWalk, where they wanted to give the message to horny, perverted men that men have no right to rape a woman even if she walks naked. The mission was to make a point of ‘zero tolerance’ for sexual violence. The global protest took off after a Toronto policeman told a “personal security class” at York University that “women should avoid dressing like sluts in order not to be victimised”. The aftermath to that comment became a global movement, when a thousand people hit the streets of Toronto in a “Slut Walk”.

For some men, rape is a form of punishment that they think is the best way to silence or tame an arrogant woman. And these men need to be castrated. Government has to take strict action against such evil perverted minds and then only men cannot even dream of raping a woman. And society should stop looking down upon rape victims, it is then only these victims can have hope to live on despite the mental scar. But the meanness and narrow thinking of society hardly allows women to move on. It is about time. And there should be zero tolerance for men who indulge in such acts. It is only then victims can stay strong, overcoming the physical, psychological damages thereby not taking to anti-depressants nor entertaining the idea of committing suicide. The accused should be made to pay a hefty sum to the victim and government too should protect the identity of the victim and provide her with all facilities to better her life.

Women have been at the lamentable receiving end. No day passes by without news of rape, murder, harassment, acid attacks, stove burning and domestic violence. Though many women as compared to older eras are more independent financially and emotionally, yet their independence, freedom and flamboyance are becoming a hurdle for them. They are begrudged by shallow men, by scorned, rejected suitors, unemployed and lesser successful colleagues.

India is 4th most dangerous place for women
India is only behind Afghanistan, which tops the chart while Pakistan emerges third in the list of countries deemed unsafe for the fairer sex. If violence, dismal healthcare and brutal poverty make Afghanistan the world's most dangerous country for women, the world's largest democracy, India ranks as the fourth most dangerous country for a woman to live in, according to the global survey of threat perception to the fairer sex, primarily due to female foeticide, infanticide, high levels of human trafficking, child marriage, and domestic servitude the poll showed. 44.5 percent of girls are married before the age of 18. Women dowry deaths are a daily occurrence that is well documented. Statistics reflect that a dowry related suicide takes place every 4 hours in India. That is six women per day and these are reported cases. Congo came a close second in the list of the most dangerous countries for women due to rampant rape in the country, followed by Pakistan, a poll by gender experts from a legal news service. The poll by TrustLaw, an online legal news service run by Thomson Reuters Foundation, marked the launch of its new TrustLaw Women section on its website, a global hub of news and information on women's rights.

A search of Indian newspapers found 153 reported cases of acid violence from January 2002 to October 2010. In 2009, India's then home secretary Madhukar Gupta estimated that 100 million people, mostly women and girls, were victims of trafficking in India that year."The practice is common but lucrative so it goes untouched by the government and police," said Cristi Hegranes, founder of the Global Press institute, which trains women in developing countries to be journalists. The country's Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) estimated that in 2009 about 90 per cent of trafficking took place within the country and that there were some 3 million prostitutes, of which about 40 per cent were children. Around 50 million girls are thought to be "missing" over the past century due to female infanticide and foeticide in the country, the UN Population Fund says.

Women should be given their space to tread
If the government does not pull up its socks and doesn’t work on with severest punishment for these sex-hungry-rapists, molesters, traffickers, acid attackers then India certainly will climb up the ladder at least in being the most dangerous country for a women to live in. While most sexual violence is attempted by friends or acquaintances, a large portion of crime is still random.  Cat-calling, groping, and staring are all common complaints. Men keep staring at women as if she is on display. Such experiences deter a woman’s mood from being herself. She always has to edit her words, gestures, reactions, dress code to be comfortable in the presence of men. This is sheer hypocrisy, where many men act like predators on the prowl for flesh. The suffocation in a woman’s life is not over yet, she has to check her smile and gregarious mannerisms before it can cause trouble for her as it can be interpreted that she is interested in the person, there is also a stigma attached to women drinking, smoking, where chances are high of her being considered easy and available according to the male’s dictionary. So preferably it is important to look stoic and emotionless, precisely women should stop being themselves. How can a woman be said to be dressed provocatively and held responsible for her feminine gifts? And I would like to add, it is not a safe excuse to blame women for their dressing, little girls are raped too, and certainly not for dressing provocatively when they have not even hit puberty. Every day we hear horror stories about attempted sexual assaults on trains, and females age no bar being the victim of more unwanted touching than they can embarrassingly remember. No women can claim she hasn’t been harassed nor been subjected to inappropriate touching, groping, lewd calls.

Chances are high of India verging on becoming ‘No Woman’s Land’.

Sadly, this Women’s day, I have nothing to celebrate. Although there may be a handful of Indian women striding high in the coveted lists of Forbes, these women’s progress might be relieving, yet does not solace the many hypocrisies and harassments females are enduring these days 24x7=365days.


Sukanya Sharma said…
Your emotions are right there!
Samrat Singh said…
Leslie your writing emotes pain and anger. good going to a strong and gutsy woman on women's day.
Akhil said…
Lez your writing is prolific. You are the new angry young woman !
Jay said…
great writing... really appreciate
Unknown said…
you have become a mother cat to all the girls :( no one has loved them b4.. girls deserve dere own land..
breath breath nd breath >> GOD BLESS YOU.
Akshay said…
Women's Day is indeed a farce.Celebrating a day out of 365 days in an year means - 'Lets compensate for the 364 days of negligence, the 364 days of being treated a doormat.After all we as 'conscious' individuals ought to create some awareness about the species facing threats just as we do for the endangered fauna.Hope it will suffice.

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