In the midst of ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ and other commitments of the Modi Government, whenever the shrieks of the 8-year-old from Kathua or Nirbhaya is heard, perhaps, the people of this country get to know that “Mother India’s daughters” are not safe anymore.
In April, there have been around six rape cases in the media in which children have been the victims. As in the recent case of the 8-year-old girl from Kathua, Jammu and Kashmir, who was raped just to establish dominance and supremacy over the nomadic Bakarwal community. ‘Hindutva’ justified its misogyny by letting the perpetrators violate the body of a child in a temple where as per Hindu customs, women are disallowed during their menstrual days. “Her murder was a ‘well-planned’ crime to create fear among the Bakarwals in Kathua and drive them away from their homes in the Hindu-majority area”, said, Talib Hussain (a member of the Bakarwal community). Along with Retired Revenue Official and temple’s custodian Sanji Ram, Police officer Deepak Khajuria was also involved in this heinous crime.
The charge sheet filed has revealed some details like how the girl was kidnapped, drugged, raped before being killed. Though the state government has said that it will not allow the law to be obstructed but the efforts taken by the Hindu groups to defend the accused and disrupt the police investigation, is really disgusting. It provokes us to think about the growing insanity amongst the religious nationalists. While on the one hand, people across India are demanding justice for Asifa, crimes against women continue to occur. As per a report by The Wire, as many as 39 crimes against women are reported every hour in India, among which there are four rape cases in every 60 minutes. This is really a disturbing trend for the nation and throws light on the conservative and misogynist mindset.
The ‘civilised society’ blame women for their miseries. It is often heard that women are equally responsible for the crimes against them. They incite men by wearing skin-showing dresses, and this male-dominated communal society considers women to be responsible for their safety, and don’t even hesitate to ‘politicise rape’.
Religion is so deeply rooted in the Indian panorama that people tend to ignore that humanity is always a step ahead than religion. It is so inherent amongst the Indian population that even after such a heartbreaking incident that shook the entire nation, people continue to view this through the communal lens, and this is really a matter of concern for all the citizens of a so-called ‘Secular India’.
Instead of sitting quietly and watching the situation on television and discussing about it, it is the need of the hour to protest against the current situation by opposing not through candle marches, not through posters, not through cursing the accused but by voicing against those who violate and abuse women and children for their own selfish agenda.
If you are a survivor, parent or guardian who wants to seek help for child sexual abuse, or know someone who might, you can dial 1098 for CHILDLINE (a 24-hour national helpline) or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also call NGO Arpan on their helpline 091-98190-86444, for counselling support.