Thursday, December 20, 2012
Crime and Punishment
The whole world, it seems, is talking about the Delhi gang rape case: the incident has managed to attract the attention of a thick-skinned, usually indifferent and often insensitive generation, caught up in their smartphones and iPads, too busy making money and spending it. Yes, it includes me too.
Now that it has made both the national and international media go hoarse, now that students and citizens have taken to the streets and now that everybody born with a keyboard have expressed themselves on twitter/blogs/facebook, our usually indolent government has also been hustled into action, albeit through some token measures and platitudes.
A few months back, I had written about violation of women in this post. Now, as we witness yet another barbaric act, I am left to wonder, rather helplessly, if at all, there is a solution. You can talk about fast-track courts, death penalty, sensitization of police force, deterrents or even awareness, but it still leaves the issue of the social and cultural norms, which cannot be dismantled so easily.
We belong to a country which treats women as second-class citizens, which is unabashedly pro-men, which worships aggression and bullies the weak and which resists anything that threatens the established hierarchy. Till we become more open-minded as a nation, till we become more tolerant to differences and till we learn to accept the changing social and economic milieu, other measures would fall inadequately short of achieving the harmony that we are waiting for, hoping for, praying for…
Meanwhile, as our society gets educated, painfully and slowly, what are women supposed to do?
Wait for a cultural revolution, as we put up with the callousness in our daily lives?
Hope for a judicial reform, as we patiently look for justice?
Pray for a safe return every day, as we leave the house?
Isn’t it just easier to forsake the nation which has so easily forsaken us, the nation which is so careless towards one half of its citizen and a nation where crime is rampant, but punishment is not?