Rape inflicts the soul and mitigates the personality. It spreads the way an epidemic does and I thus feel the need to condemn it. Rape does not need an introduction in a country like India? It is more than widespread. If you go to Delhi, in a span of twenty-four hours, you could either be a victim or an audience to the horrific act. Rape entails the act of having sex with a person without his/her consent and it is considered to be a crime in the books of the law. Rape, although targeted on person’s body, eventually murders the soul. Rapists rape the country and not only the body of the victim. The number of rape cases registered each day is on rise. The government is trying to ensure that the acts are deeply condemned but they fail to do so.
My aim behind writing all this is not to emphasize what rape is: everyone knows that. I am writing today, about an experience I had while on a recent train journey to Kolkata from the city of Bangalore.
I met a lesbian couple who were the victims of physical assault. They shared their horrifying experience with me after they found that I was interested in knowing about it. They hailed from Sikkim. As they started narrating the incident, our AC compartment was deep in silence, as if people were mourning. One of them started with how they used to do study till late in the night with their male friends. Both of them, now turned lesbian, were molested in the same place but in different rooms, by friends whom they trusted and expected them to keep them safe and protected. She told me that it was during those days when hostels were not considered to be safe and she therefore opted for a rented room with her best friend. I could feel the warmth in my body as I saw a tear drop trying to escape her eye.
It was her birthday and her exams were going on. The group however planned to enjoy the birthday in a peculiar way. They planned to study till midnight and to party after that. She was comfortable as she considered them to be good friends, who could never ever think of harming her.
It was a group of two girls (the victims) and four boys. The boys, as usual wanted drinks to be the part of the celebration but the girls resisted. However the excitement of trying it for the first and the last time landed them in trouble and they thus said yes for the drinks. The pain of being betrayed by their own male friends was heavy for them. Their eyes were flooding. To people, they were tears but to me they were the ashes of the fire which burnt their friendship, love and their trust for their male friends. Consolation was a not an option, so I did not even try.
The party began and the drinks began to flow. An hour after drinking, the girls started feeling drowsy and lost senses owing to the fact that it was first time. Their male acquaintances did not miss the golden opportunity.
I could find them shivering and sweating in the AC compartment and I thus offered them my blanket. They said that after the act, the boys left the place, leaving them in a sad state. They collected themselves after they resurfaced from the boozing spree and the pain of being molested by four men, all at once. They were helpless and heir soul was now hollow. They had nothing to say and had nothing to do. They refrained from talking about their sinful act in front of their parents and the police.
They still carry the pain in their hearts. They still are afraid of men. They never drink because their first experience was terrible and meaning behind their lives changed owing to the same. They sought each other for everything and thus fell in love. They hate men; they love each other, and are now termed as lesbians. This society gives you no choice. If they open up and speak out, they will always remain rape victims who deserve nothing but pity.
After this, I had nothing to say. I was speechless. I cursed myself for being a male. I was unable to bring myself to ask them anything more. I walked away and opted for some cigarettes as they are drugs that pull me back from insanity. After one puff, I felt like I had left something behind. Something was still incomplete. What was it? I did not know. I followed the voice in my head and went back to them. They were all draped in a blanket and I hugged them and cried out to my heart’s content. They wept too. Did my tears convey what I wanted to say? Maybe. I could not utter a word; all I was left with was a pain which was unexplainable and inexpressible.
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