Thursday, December 08, 2022

Unsafe in India

By The Editorial Team Updated: Aug 19, 2020 11:15 pm

It is high time now to revisit the laws meant to protect women in India. In 2012, after the dastardly Nirbhaya incident, stringent provisions, including death penalty were included in the law to ensure safety of women. But, statistics shows that those measures have failed to yield any results. As per the data published by National Crime Records Bureau 32, 559 rape cases were registered in 2017. The number further increased to 33, 356 in 2018. Worrying is the fact that every fourth rape victim in India is a minor and in most cases, the offender is known to the victim. Among the states Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh top the list of the maximum number of reported rape cases. It implies that even in the heart of the country, which is often referred to as the cow belt, women are not at all safe, irrespective of all the major changes in the law.

So, those who are blaming the increasing number of rapes as a law and order failure, should correct their views. If it is simply a law and order problem, it could have been tackled by making stricter laws. But the present situation shows that in-order to make India a safe place for women, the mindset of its people have to be changed first. Throughout the country, the practice of treating women as second class citizens should be prevented. Offences like physical and mental abuse, dowry deaths, eve teasing, etc. should also attract stronger punishment than what the law presently enforces. But only changing the law will not be sufficient. Simultaneously, equality of human rights for all humans should be made part of the curriculum. We often hear about including sex education in our courses. But such a step will mean nothing, if we don’t teach our future generations about respecting women and all human beings by our deeds and as well as by teaching them the virtues of doing so.

Ironically, India is known as a land which had an open society during the Vedic period. However, since then, Indian society has taken a turn backwards with every passing day. In today’s India, for many parents, no matter how educated or talented the daughter is, marriage is not possible without paying a hefty dowry. If the girl chooses a path other than marriage, she faces harassment at work places too. Her talent and her hard work in most cases are deliberately ignored. Equality evades her grip through pre-set societal and cultural standards. It is this very mindset which is to be blamed for the increasing number of rapes and molestations in India. Till the time India refuses to learn this simple lesson, the country will remain to be known as one of world’s most unsafe places for women.

By The Editorial Team Updated: Aug 19, 2020 11:15:10 pm