Women are not sex objects, nor are they slaves to sex. They are human beings just like you and me. What is wrong with our men today? Why do some of them commit heinous crimes like rape and murder? Are they not born out of women? Do they live an uncivilized life in an uncivilized society? What do we do to stop such horrible crimes taking place day after day? Jesus Christ boldly said, “I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” (Matthew, Chapter 5, verse 28).
Going by the statistics today, I think that majority of our Indian men would fall into this category. Is it not a shame for a land that is called ‘spiritual’ to be called the ‘rape’ capital of the world? How many of our Indian men can truly say that they look at a woman as persons and not as sexual objects? How many of our men would raise their voice when they witness an abuse of a girl in their homes, in trains, in buses, in workplaces and in public places?
How many of our men can utter the following words to a woman whom they encounter in life, be it a mother, a wife, a daughter, a workmate, a co-traveller, a student, an employee, a housemaid or a nun?
“Oh woman, do not be afraid,
You can be of yourself as I am of myself.
I respect you and value you for what you are.
You can wear what you like as I wear what I want.
You can go where you want and when you want, as I go about freely where I want.
You needn’t be afraid of me as I will not harm you.”
To reduce the attacks on women on suburban trains, the woman’s compartment should be separated from the gent’s section by a strong mesh that enables the men to be alert to any unsolicited entry or any untoward incident in the ladies’ compartment. In this way, the men could also respond to any untoward incident eventuality. Also, if these compartments are positioned at the middle of the train, it might make it more difficult for the offenders to escape.
Anti-social elements often roam the streets freely, causing constant nuisance to women. They have no fear of the law, knowing that it would take months, sometimes even years, before the case comes to a court hearing, and they are confident that they can escape punishment by using the loopholes in the law.
The existing laws on rape in India are very weak, which is why we have not been able to curb the numerous cases of sexual assaults on women that are happening daily. Perhaps the most uncomfortable procedure in the investigation of such cases is the identification parade. In most of these cases the survivor finds it very difficult to identify the accused after the horrible experience she has faced. Therefore, the law should be such that it upholds the dignity of a women while giving rapists the maximum punishment. Also, these cases should be tried by women judges only, as male judges often favour the accused. And in most of the cases, the accused (rapist, murderer, thief, etc) is the son of a politician or a policeman. So he very well knows that he can get away with either a light punishment or no punishment at all.
It is high time that rape laws are amended in India. After the December 16, 2012, Delhi gang rape case, rapes have increased in India. Even children of the age of four to five years are not spared. Sometimes, they are raped by their own uncles or their fathers/step-fathers. Barbaric laws like those of Saudi Arabia and other Arabian Gulf countries should be introduced in India where the criminal (read rapist) is either beheaded or stoned to death. Our laws don’t act as a deterrent and culprits often go unpunished. Most often rapists escape with a light punishment, as they enjoy political clout which can be seen in so many rape case incidents. It’s high time the government framed new rape laws where even juveniles are not spared and they are awarded maximum punishment.