India has failed me. Not just as a woman. Not just as a citizen. It’s failed me as a human being. The stories of two rapes in India – the little girl Asifa in Khatua, Jammu and Kashmir kidnapped, raped and killed. Another woman who was raped, in Unnao in Uttar Pradesh, her father dies after brutal beating in police custody because the family sought justice. Is Asifa another Nirbhaya? And so is the Unnao rape survivor? We need collective disobedience against rape in India.

Politicians and police are the central characters of these rape cases. This to me deserves all the country’s undivided attention.

Politicians and police are the central characters of these rape cases. This to me deserves all the country’s undivided attention. People who are voted in. People who are to protect us. This is murder of democracy. It’s a murder of trust that we put in our country’s law making. There are so many things that outrage one’s common sense and belief in the system.

One, the rape. Brutal. Barbarous. Hell. Asifa is Nirbhaya at 8 years. Yes she is another Nirbhaya. It fails my why we don’t have marches on the street. Night vigils and a collective uproar. In Unnao, UP, a 17-year old girl has alleged rape by BJP legislator Kuldeep Singh Sengar (details here). Her father, is now dead after he was brutally injured and died in the police station trying to seek justice for her daughter.

If these cases don’t shake the conscience of this nation what will? Asifa another Nirbhaya?

Two, Asifa was sedated. Raped over and over again over a week. She was given big doses of drugs. Rapists reportedly include lawyers, and police. In Unnao, the girl and her family sat outside the Chief Minister’s home waiting and waiting for someone to address their complaint and file a formal one with the police. This took days.

Three, Asifa was raped by people who carried the national flag and called it their own. Do I share our national flag with such people? Why? No I don’t want to.

Four, Asifa was raped in a temple. A temple? We call this a place of worship? In a prayer hall? Reports say to teach her tribe a lesson for being nomads and seeking shelter.

Five, I don’t understand why we in our conversations shift so quickly from the heinous crime to how the investigation will be done. Can we address the crime? Can we wake up our conscience and realise this was rape. Rape to me is rape. Every single one is brutal. Every single one should outrage our sensibilities. As a nation, we should collectively cry. And seek just as brutal a justice.

Shameless lawyers who didn’t let the officials do their job in the court are ganging up to put an unethical attempt at blocking justice. Aren’t these the people who should be promoting justice?

On national television we have people, experts, politicians, lawyers questioning the right and wrongs of the investigation. Have we forgotten what was done to the girls in these cases? The debate, in the case of Asifa, is oscillating between whether it is the State crime Branch or CBI that will do the investigation. How the probe should give everyone one a fair chance to prove their innocence. The debates are focussed on who bungled the investigation conveniently forgetting the crime itself. Shameless lawyers who didn’t let the officials do their job in the court are ganging up to put an unethical attempt at blocking justice. Aren’t these the people who should be promoting justice?

Is beti bachao just a slogan? When will this nation become intolerant to crimes against women? Against rape? Against sexual assault.

If these cases don’t shake the conscience of this nation what will? I am surprised that politicians have not come out and spoken in the public domain. Our social media-trigger-happy leaders haven’t come out to speak and ask for justice. And now it’s going to be about ‘enquiries’ which is the fate of most cases. They vapourise in files. And become often the reason for top stories like these to slip into tiny columns of inside places.

What will it take for our IPL playing cricketers to boycott parties and stand against rape just as they do for brand endorsements? Stand for what this nation needs to change?

Is beti bachao just a slogan? When will this nation become intolerant to crimes against women? Against rape? Against sexual assault. What will it take for the media to put the news on rape as their first story, first lead, every single day? Every. Single. Day. In every language. In every edition. In every city. What will it take for our IPL playing cricketers to boycott parties and stand against rape just as they do for brand endorsements? Stand for what this nation needs to change? If politicians can forget ruling vs opposition and get together and fight for their entitlements, why can’t they make a human chain outside the Parliament protest against rape and ask for justice and better law and order.

Will this ever change? There seems no end to this shame.

Views are the author’s own

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