The government has come up with several measures to prevent rape; some of them sound hilarious. Just like we have statutory warnings on cigarette packets saying they cause cancer, these measures look like putting up similar warnings on condom packets cautioning that they should not be used during rape.
GOING THROUGH the list of measures outlined to prevent rape and the timeline of events that led to the gang-rape of a girl from Uttar Pradesh
in a moving bus in Delhi
is like looking at several ways to beat around the bush and brush the matter under the carpet. It also seems these measures have been announced to soothe the public anger for a while and then go back to business
as usual, because trying to put the real solution in place will mean stripping the elite of India
of their VIP status and reinventing the police force.
What the Tehelka Sting operation clearly shows and I am sure that Tarun Tejpal and Ashish Khetan will agree with me when I say this- the cops need a mindset change. Why do I say strip people of VIP status and reinvent the police because the police are not there to terrorize the common man; they are there to protect and serve and when they fail, they become a nuisance for the very persons who are supposed to be protected by them.
To all the ladies who are crying themselves hoarse over this rape I shall tell you a story that noted fiction writer Mukul Deva told me --- which is a true story --- two young ladies wearing scanty black dresses driving a fancy car in the middle of the night in the midst of nowhere had a flat tyre. They were a good eleven miles from human habitation. So they phoned the cops who came escorted them to the cocktail party they were headed for and then came back got their car repaired and delivered it at the party venue and saluted them and left. That was the police in Norway… now let’s come to the police in India.
According to their mindset, only Britishers, now VIPs need protection and service; the others are there to be treated with contempt or to be harassed.
The bus workers who raped the girl had robbed one gentleman earlier of Rs 7000 and his mobile phone, but he did not report the matter to the police immediately, otherwise the rape may have been prevented and the bus impounded. Had he been a VIP he would have called the police. Now I wonder why the cops in Norway were called immediately and the cops in Delhi were not; we have to think through this, otherwise gang- rapes will continue to happen some even in police stations (though we have heard such cases, involving Dalit girls, as well).
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