She was first sexually abused by a group of men, beaten brutally with a blunt object for resisting the assault and later thrown out of the bus (the crime scene) to die on the roads of the capital city of India, Delhi. Now, the 23-year-old, native of Dehradun, is fighting for her life in Safdarjung Hospital. Doctors treating her claimed the woman, who is on ventilator support in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the hospital, is "very critical".
Doctors treating her said they had never seen a victim of sexual assault subjected to "such brutality"."We performed several life-saving procedures on her within an hour of her being brought to the hospital around 3 am. Her injuries were severe and she has lost a lot of blood," said a senior doctor at the hospital. The victim had reportedly lost nearly a litre of blood and had severe internal injuries.
What does that tell us? Simple, in our country, women are nothing more than objects at the hands of men. And menfolk shamelessly abuse, discard and destroy them at will. The worst part is that law enforcing agencies further alienate them as justice for rape victims are a rarity in a nation which for some "odd reasons" has given women the status of a "goddess".
Yes, probably a day is not far, when "goddesses" adorning religious places too would be victimised. Or, perhaps religious leaders will rise and protect those lifeless idols? But, a girl/woman full of life is easily molested, crippled and silenced for life. The status of women in India is a subject that is hardly discussed in an open forum. For they (decision-makers) fear, giving equal status and respect to women would jeopardise the very standing of men, who are in the majority.
And, that is the main drawback of a democracy, where politics of majority have led to the suffering of every minority. Women in India find themselves in minority and skewed sex ratio (940:1000, which means there are 940 women per 1000 men in India) aptly indicates it. In states like Haryana, the numbers are as low as 877 females per 1000 males. So, for those believers of vote-bank politics, issues of women hardly matter. It is not that women are only unsafe outside the confines of their homes. For many, the very "safe home" is nothing less than "hell".
Perhaps, that is why close on the heels of the gangrape incident in New Delhi, media reports another shocking incident of a 14-year-old girl from Kerala. The minor was allegedly raped by her brother and his friends for over two years.
Now, where do women go?
Apart from flexing their physical strength, men suffer from the syndrome of believing that they are "intellectually" superior to women. Most of the Indian men would be seen ridiculing women for having less IQ. But, if men have higher IQ rate, why do they behave like beasts? And, as far as I know, animals are inferior to humans in the department of reasoning and thinking.
It is the same superiority complex of Indian men (fathers, brothers, husbands) which gives them the licence to make decisions on behalf of women. That is why if a woman marry the man of her choice, she becomes victim of "honour killing". Moreover, our moral police and khap panchayat will always come up with one or another "bizarre" diktats to control women's life. "Don't wear Jeans, Don't use mobile....."
I have described the overall thinking and reasoning power of Indian males to find out why women have to endure humiliation and pain of undergoing sexual abuse on a daily basis? Abuse of women in public spaces cannot be studied in isolation. Abuse of women just cannot be put under the category of "crime". Abuse of women is a tradition of India and we are not ashamed about it. Indians suffer from a psychological disorder, which permit them to deem women as inferior and weak species.
Perhaps, that is why justice eludes rape victims. How many culprits have been convicted in the recent times? The statistics are very low. The National Crime Records Bureau's statistical databases say that there are more and more women approaching police with complaints about sexual assault but ever-fewer victims getting justice.
In 1973, the NCRB first published data on rape: 2,919 rape cases were registered at police stations across India that year. By 2010, the figure grew to 20,262. The numbers of prosecutions ending in conviction, though, have steadily declined.
The reason behind lesser conviction is the attitude of authorities who feel that rape cases are not worth following. "The capacities of police to investigative crimes have incrementally diminished--and the social attitudes, that deem rape a crime not worthy of devoting more resources to, haven't changed," said a women rights activist.
Politicians have already started playing politics over the rape of 23-year-old girl in Delhi. The Opposition wants a discussion in the Parliament on the issue. Time is not to discuss but to act, arrest and punish the culprits.
The solution to end rape cases is not hard. If India can take pride in hanging terrorist like Ajmal Kasab, why not hang rapists? Rapists need severest of punishment and justice needs to be delivered by executing criminals in the gallows.