By Jagjit Singh
Los Altos, CA: The brutal rape and death of a young woman has sparked deep revulsion and outrage in Delhi and many other parts of the country.
Just as the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School ushered in a vigorous debate over assault weapons ban, this is a watershed moment for India, a society that has overtly favored males over females.
There is universal outrage over police ineptness, political apathy and a laissez-faire attitude towards such brutal crimes. In many instances, police dissuade victims from filing complaints and often accuse the victim of precipitating the attack. Rape victims are reluctant to report such crimes out of fear of being tainted or treated as unmarriageables. In some bizarre cases, they are forced to marry their own attackers.
Deeply entrenched misogynistic attitudes must be vigorously challenged. Men were glaringly absent among the thousands of protestors. They need to pledge their solidarity with their sisters.
Special mobile courts should be set up to fast-track rape cases. Specialized police task forces are needed to be established to enhance women’s security, as seen in Kerala and Gujarat. The perpetrators should be tarred, feathered and forced to be made a public ridicule to dissuade other predators.
Female honor killings, infanticides, sexual harassment and assaults have all become the norms. It is appalling that such repugnant crimes against women have been accompanied by a deafening corrosive silence by religious leaders. Why are these spiritual guardians of morality not screaming and demanding that their adherents conform to basic human decency?