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Opinion

Sexual Assault Against Women : A Lesson To Be Learnt From KATHUA Rape

Recently, a horrific and gruesome incident happened in Kathua district of J&K whereby an eight-year old minor was raped, assaulted and killed by those who claim to be in so-called authoritative position. It was the clear example of anger and power assertive rape where perpetrators wanted to create fear in the Bakerwal community. However, it became more shocking when it started taking the shape of political vessel and religious blasphemy.

In such an orthodox and stereotyped society of ours, women has been prey of social turbulence in various forms like humiliation, harassment, torture both physical and mental, in the most egregious ways despite having stringent laws. After Nirbhaya incident, an attempt was made to enact harsher laws through Criminal Law (Amendment), 2013. Of course, the law-enforcing agencies have done a commendable job but in our country, the wave of trend is flowing in other direction because people are still entangled in the ‘web of patriarchy’. Patriarchal societies provide a strong background to felony’s coming under this category. Moreover, the spirit of toleration and lack of safety at public places have given rise to such incidents more frequently. 

A big lacuna that is imminent in our country is that in cases of sexual assault, we do not work on the principle of “Prevention is better than cure” rather we first wait for the things to happen and then react on it. It is only after witnessing some new form of sexual assault, we try to penalize it and here lies the potential dilemma which asks for rectification. In the light of growing incidents, public outrage, media covering and statements made by our so-called beloved politicians will have the least impact.

Moreover, enacting more and more laws is not going to be a successful step because without their implementation, they prefer themselves as ‘dead-cells’.

Nevertheless, the most agitating facet is that people are polarizing the incident by using the weapon of religion. This is of utmost concern because in long term, this propaganda can be as harmful as was Rwandian mass rape violence of women belonging to Tutsi group. Thus, it’s a high time to change the mentality, prevent dissemination of hate ideology and to wait for the justice to happen irrespective of the caste or religion of such perpetrators. With this hope, we need to stop objectifying the women, otherwise it would be too late to assure the safety and dignity of women.

(The author Megha Purohit is Advocate, M.P. High Court)

By TIS Staffer
the authorBy TIS Staffer

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