By Alam Bains:
‘If girls don’t stay within their boundaries, if they don’t wear appropriate clothes, then naturally there is attraction. This attraction makes men aggressive, prompting them to just do it (rape)’
‘If a girl wears revealing clothes, it will encourage lewd thoughts in any kid. They wear short skirts, blouse, they don’t wear dupattas, they flaunt their bodies. The kid naturally will get attracted to her’
“Yeh (girl) itne kapde pehni hui hai; wo isiliye taaki log “mujhse akarshit ho aur mere saath kuch na kuch kare”. (She is dressed in a manner that people get attracted to her. In fact, she wants them to do something to her.)”
“In reality, the ones who complain about rape are only those who have turned rape into a business.”
“Kya NCR mein rape hote hain? Akhbar mein nahi, fact pe aa jao. NCR mein har cheez mutual understanding se hoti hai. Mera personal view, one ya two percent NCR mein rape hote hain… Apas ki understanding hai, nahi ban paya, jahan 2 tha, wahan 3 ho gaye (Are there any rapes in NCR? Go by facts and not by what newspapers say. Everything in NCR happens with mutual understanding. My personal view is that there are one or two percent rape cases in NCR. If the understanding falls through, the exaggeration begins. Two becomes three”
“Women from Northeast could never be victims of forced sex as they are invariably involved in the flesh trade.”
“If a woman has consensual sex with one man, then she shouldn’t complain if his friends also join in.”
“This is a lucrative trade for women; it’s business. They’ve found an income source. It’s common; you’re short of money, your parents don’t give you money to spend. You make compromises.”
Outraged? Disgusted? Shocked at the apathy? Wondering what sort of prejudiced, misogynist and shockingly insensitive people could make statements like these?
Then brace yourself because these statements are made by none other than keepers of the law and protectors of the innocent- the policemen of National Capital Region. A shocking expose by G. Vishnu and Abhishek Bhalla of Tehelka shows the ugly views of the policemen about rape victims , the same people who are supposed to effect justice blame the victims and support the perpetrators.
During a two week long investigation, the Tehelka journalists interviewed more than 30 senior cops in Delhi-NCR and when asked to explain the rising instances of rape, they invariably blamed the women. They blamed everything- from wearing revealing clothes to having boyfriends, from consuming alcohol to visiting pubs as the “reasons” for rape.
A month ago, the Noida police revealed the identity of a minor girl who was brutally gang raped in a moving car in violation of Section 228-A of the Indian Penal Code. Adding insult to injury, the investigating officer of the case Sub-Inspector Ram Kumar Malik says “The real issue here is that the girl is a habitual vodka drinker and had asked for a vodka party. She then demanded Rs 6,000 for sex. When the money wasn’t paid, she registered a rape complaint.” If this was not enough, he further goes on to blame the victim’s mother and her “loose character” as the real reason behind the girl’s “loose morals”. He says, “The girl’s mother is divorced. She’s living with another man from the Yadav community. She’s 48 whereas the man is 28. It’s inevitable the two daughters will be wayward, isn’t it? Now when two young girls watch their 48-year-old mother sleeping with a 28-year-old man, even they’ll be aroused. Sex is like hunger”
In the Gurgaon rape case TEHELKA captured conversations with the SHO as well as the additional SHO of Sector-29 Police Station, who otherwise have nothing to do with the ongoing investigation. Commenting on the girl’s character, SHO Jagdish Prasad said: “In the recent DLF case, the girl is 27-years-old, the boys are 18 to 20-years-old. They are kids. She was dancing with these kids in the bar… I am telling you she induced them… The girl came and gave her phone number to them.”
These are not the views of one or two cops. This misogyny is embedded deep in the institution that is supposed to protect women. According to the National Crime Records Bureau, the conviction rate in the Rape Capital of the country is a mere 34.6%. The courts are acquitting the accused due to faulty FIR’s, lack of proper medical evidence and poor investigation. There is repeated failure of justice due to the prejudiced and insensitive attitude of the police personnel towards women in general and rape victims in particular.
Instead of addressing central issues like under reporting of crime against women, falling conviction rates, lack of faith between the victim and the police, they find it more convenient to just blame the victim. The statements made by these people are so outrageous, one can’t help but shudder at the thought that if this is the thinking of the cops from Delhi-NCR, what would be the plight of the victims from the small towns who dare to report a crime against them?
The need of the hour is to recognize the fact that our society and especially our police personnel are not at all gender sensitized. These attitudes have to change. We need to bring about changes in the existing system to ensure that women feel confident and comfortable in approaching any policeman or policewoman. The political leadership of the state and the senior police officials have to ensure that the entire police force is responsive to the needs of all the sections of the society, irrespective of their caste, creed, color or sex. It would entail reforming the existing system of policing – from recruitment to training to the organizational culture, everything needs an overhaul. We need to work together as a society to create an environment where the blame falls on the perpetrator and not on the victim. We need to make the society understand that “Rape is caused by rapists, misogyny, structural voilence, institutional tolerance, not by women’s clothes, the way she walks, the way she crosses her legs, the make up she wears, being in the ‘wrong’ place, drinking, or not being ‘careful enough’.”
Read the full story: http://tehelka.com/story_main52.asp?filename=Ne140412Coverstory.asp
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