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February 20, 2019

Delhi's 'rape culture' needs to stop now

The other day I came across an article that said that in January and February this year, there have been 400 rape cases that were reported in Delhi. Basically that just makes it the rape capital of the world and I’m sitting here thinking what a label to live with.

It’s disgusting that people think it’s OK to rape. Every now and then I read that tourists and young girls are raped. The 400 figure mentioned in the report is just for the reported cases. How many of these incidences go unreported?

I don’t know if it’s upbringing, environment, exposure to pornography or what, but there is something that acts as a trigger for this culture. I could easily put it down to a lack of education — sexual education at the least, if nothing else. I know for a fact how taboo it is in South Asian households to talk openly about sex. Talking to your kids about it is simply not done. I’m not sure why though.

I’m going to be very crude. Watching movies and accessing magazines and books with the slightest hint of anything sexual gets these goats all horny and then they need to vent their sexual frustrations. Catcalling, eve-teasing and just touching virtual strangers in hordes of human traffic isn’t an uncommon practice. You could be minding your business on a crowded bus or just walking through the streets and some men will think of nothing at groping or fondling women and walking off.

We all want to know why no one has the guts to stop them. I’ve watched Indian television ads that encourage the public to speak up and stand by people who ask for help. The ‘It’s not my business’ syndrome exists almost everywhere in the world where people do not want to get involved with anyone’s woes, and especially not when a bunch of hoodlums are picking on a woman. Violence usually ensues and people feel it’s best to keep away.

It is such a shame that the world has come to this where we have ceased to make such things our business. Unless of course it happens to someone we know and someone we love, we don’t really care. Rape isn’t just confined to Delhi. It happens everywhere and I was talking to someone from the UK who told me that half the time rape cases don’t get to courts because the charges are dropped because people don’t have the guts to come forward and complain or take it up completely. It is fear that stops them.

I don’t really know what else to say except that we shouldn’t act like it’s not our business. Allowing rape to become the norm and not fight it or prosecute the rapists is not what we want to unleash because then our future, our kids’ future is completely doomed. Speak up about anything you don’t feel is right. You may just be the lone voice but at least seeing you others will also garner the guts to stand up against atrocities being meted out against human beings by human beings.


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