Rohtak sisters' mystery: Has it ruined lives?

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Rohtak, Dec 12: It is not yet decided whether the Rohtak sisters are bravehearts or attention seekers.

The court will do that. However, on second thoughts, and a few revisions, there are several ideas that cross one's mind: Can the men be given a benefit of doubt? Is the Indian constitution biased toward women? Do we need amendments for laws for men too? Should court hearings weigh their options before giving judgements when it comes to sexual harassment cases?

Videos tell a different story

The mysterious second video that emerged after the original video of the sisters fighting their 'molesters', raises a number of questions.

Who shot the video? Where did the belt emerge from? (it seemed as if the girl got it from somewhere and not snap it from her waist); why were there no protestors, supporting the women?


Were the eyewitness accounts true when they said that it was them who picked up the fight over seats?

The other side of the story: Lives ruined?

We have a mental set-up that when a man and a woman are embroiled in a fight, we pay more attention to the woes of the woman and simply refuse to understand the man's point of view.

We are not suggesting that men are always right, but when we pass a judgement, it is better to weigh the versions of both the parties and then decide. Who knows, it could be the deciding factor for somebody's life?

A third video by the 'Logical Indian' is just what we said. It shows the other side of the story where a freelance journalist interviews the accused men and cites a witness in the incident at a Mumbai park.

It is heart-wrenching to see a young lad, also an accused, crying because he cannot go to college anymore. His farmer father's dream trashed and a career flawed.

A few more eyewitnesses

A man and his wife speak of the Mumbai incident and say that the sisters are at fault. That they threatened him (who tried to stop them from beating the men) with a rape charge, if he intervened.

A few people from the village of the girls state that this was a usual affair for them and their family. "They borrow money from us and do not return on time. When we ask them to return the money, they threaten us with rape charges as their uncle is a cop.

Meanwhile, the detained boys in the bus incident are awaiting their trials, may be for a charge, that is baseless.

A rape charge could lead you to....

As per, the word rape is legally defined u/s 375 of Indian Penal Code, 1860.

"It defines the rape and also prescribes its punishment. Whenever a man penetrates or does sexual intercourse with a woman without her consent or will it amounts to rape.

Penetration here means that only a slightest of the touch of penis to vagina amounts to rape, unruptured hymen of woman does not prove that rape was not committed. There are exceptions to it also i.e. when a man does sexual intercourse with his wife who is above 15 years of age.

The rape law under Indian Penal Code had gone through a lot of amendments. In 1983, amendment was made and S. 376(2) i.e. Custodial rape, S. 376(A) i.e. marital rape & S. 376(B to D) i.e. Sexual Intercourse not amounting to rape were added.

U/s 228A of Indian Penal Code, No person can disclose the name of the rape victim and if anybody discloses the name, he shall be punished with either description for a term which may extend to two years and shall also be liable for fine.

U/s 114-A of Indian Evidence Act, presumption can be made as to the absence of consent in certain prosecutions for rape.

U/s 53(1) of Code of Criminal Procedure, When a person is arrested on a charge of committing an offence of such a nature and alleged to have been committed under such circumstances that there are reasonable grounds for believing that an examination of his person will afford evidence as to the commission of an offence, it shall be lawful for a registered medical practitioner, acting at the request of a police officer not below the rank of sub-inspector, and for any person acting in good faith in his aid and under his direction, to make such an examination of the person arrested as is reasonably necessary in order to ascertain the facts which may afford such evidence, and to use such force as is reasonably necessary for that purpose.

U/s 164A of Code of Criminal Procedure, provisions for medical examination of rape victim are given.

U/s 327(2) of Code of Criminal Procedure, there should be in camera trial for all rape victims.

The Judiciary in India is burdened with a lot of work and therefore judgment of the rape cases comes very late. Sometimes it comes so late that either of the parties had died. So, there should be speedy trials in rape cases so that the victim gets justice as it is rightly stated that "Justice delayed is justice denied."

The decision rests on the readers now....

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