I don’t know why I am writing or taking up this issue. Already hundreds and thousands of words have been inked on print and e-media, rather meticulously. But the inner voice of my mind is too resistant to mute itself or even lower it. And I feel, why should it, when the socio-politico setup is itself so engaged and enraged with it. Well, there have been so many incidents like this before; happening today and with regard to the present scenario with all probability will not stop in the future.
If you think I am being pessimistic, no I am not. To come straight on the point I am talking about the Delhi gang rape incident and the eventual sudden awakening of the national conscience. The youth of the country was busy protesting, Verma Committee busy with its recommendations (which I find a custom in India, crime followed by protests and then the greetings in the form of recommendations and promises), writers were busy putting their best on the paper to safeguard the female gender questioning the patriarchal and misogynist mindset of the society. Everyone is suddenly awakened. The society at large has realised it’s high time, we protect our mothers, sisters, girlfriends and other’s mothers, sisters…
Even if we sit to count the number of protests, recommendations, promises (yes, promises) we ought to be tired midway not just by the numbers but ironically the continuation of such incidents day in and day out in our Incredible India. What is the point of writing on such a topic then, when there is no full stop to such highly heinous crimes? There is a point!
When I heard of the incident, I was not shocked rather I was calm and my blood didn’t boil like many of yours did. But surely did my soul felt disheartened for I am an adult and a man to put it more precisely. Even felt ashamed being one, even though I respect the opposite sex if not more, than no less than anyone else, like many of you do (I presume). But to what use? The message I want to convey is simple: The solution lies within us. Recommendations will come and go, protests will continue, and laws will be at its place as it has been for long. But what ultimately matters and the argument boils down to is your role in the society. Write, read, protest, respect, educate. Everything is fine! But if we seek change, we must look upto what Gandhi puts it as “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. In all these years I have met two types of boys/men: One who is sexist and the other who pretends not to be one. Although you may not be involved in the crime itself, but being a part of the society you always play an important role. We protest, cry over inadequacy of our laws, but the most fundamental change would be changing ourselves.
I am of the strong opinion that the most important cause behind crimes like rape is socialization and the bringing up of the child. How a child is brought up and socialization takes place, is of utmost significance in shaping up of an individual’s character and yes if we are ever to stop rapes, molestation, eve-teasing etc. character has to be the golden rule. So, education again has an important role to play. When Gandhi said those words he meant it, he knew the essence of change in the society lies in the individual itself. The process may be slow and not as easy as it sounds but a day will come when such crimes will come to be known as the rare ones. So instead of pointing fingers at others and giving excuses, let’s change ourselves.
As Rumi says “Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.” So let’s be simple in our approach and be wise.