An Open Letter To Swathi, The Young Techie Murdered In Chennai

Posted on September 3, 2016

By Hari Haran:

Dear Swathi,

Forgive me for writing this so late. I was too mentally depressed to write due to many reasons. Unfortunately, depression doesn’t know that too many days have passed since your death and that the media has moved on to more interesting areas. I personally feel it is wrong to blame the media for moving on. My communication is not intended to reach you. Life is cruel at times. So cruel that it makes more people pray for you to rest in peace rather than pray for you to live at ease.

My communication is intended to reach the girl next door, the girl across the street, the girl in the metro station, the girl who locked herself up fearing a similar fate as you, the girl who mistakes my casual glance to be a lecherous stare due to societal stereotypes, the girl who spends more time to select clothes that makes her feel security over comfort and the girl who considers pepper spray as a necessity to survival along with food, shelter and clothing.

Your death is going to make her wince. Your death is going to make her think twice before reciprocating a smile to her male colleague. Your death is going to instil fear in her every time she rejects advances made by men in her direction. Your death is going to make her suspect even the many well-meaning men that our society breeds. Your death is going to create a sense of hatred towards love in her. Your death is going to enhance the levels of useless advice that she receives from her parents about how any mishap is always a girl’s fault. Your death is also going to make her despise society for reducing her into a mere physical structure.

Ultimately, your death is going to blow away the king of spades that she had used to build the card castle called confidence.

I hope she recovers soon.

I hope she continues to hold her head high. I hope she doesn’t lose faith on the mechanism of trust. I hope she continues to be proud of her physique. I hope she understands that her apprehensions are going to affect her survival. I hope that she is unmindful of the way in which our society celebrates Devdas. I hope she wakes up tomorrow and continues to fight her enemies – visible, invisible, outside or within with the same vigour that she has displayed all these years. Finally, I hope that one day she comes up to me and says, “Please stop worrying about what we feel. We can take care of ourselves. Go get a life” rather than sharing this with a caption that reads -” “So relatable.”