Rape : Blame the Rapist not the Victim


Center for Development of Women’s Studies (CDWS)  disturbing statistics  say 42 women are raped every day in India, one every 35 minutes.

Only one in about 70 cases of rape gets reported. This means that about 69 women get raped before one lodges an official complaint. Of the reported cases (only one out of 70), only 20 per cent are convicted. Consequently, only three out of 1,000 rapists ever get convicted. So most rapists can get away with rape.

From 9 to 90 every woman is unsafe here.

Age, status, caste ,creed, looks NO BAR, a woman is raped for just one reason : Being a woman. Nothing else.

When my maid came up with the news that a 90+ woman who had gone to a nearby “jungle” close to where she stays for morning job , she was raped by four men. The men ran away leaving the traumatized victim in a state of shock. The incident which happened very close to the local police station was pushed under the carpet. No complaint was launched. Case closed.

The maid , who was still under shock kept wondering  WHY an old woman for God’s sake ? and then came the reply from with . Because she was a woman.

She said in hushed voice, ” it does not matter if you are old or young , beautiful or ugly, rich or poor, what matters is you are a woman. what they(men) need is a hole and two boobs.”

I was more shocked than her. Shocked at the truth she was speaking. The words burned into my soul like embers.

That was the truth, complete and honest.

This is the reality which glares at us from every part of the country be it villages, cities anywhere.

Little girls , young women, old women no one is safe in this country.

In most of the cases the rapists are known people.

A father, a brother, an uncle , a friend. Who are we supposed to trust?

Rape doe not happen like they show in films, it comes from unexpected sources, hits hard and stuns the victim.

I remember Gulzar Saheb’s poem Rape’s few lines here :

” sirf aurat thi wo, kamzor thi wo,

char mardon ne, ki wo mard the bas

pasedeewar use rape kiya

translation

Just a woman, weak, vulnarable

four men, only because they were men

pinned her against the wall and raped her.

Unfortunately  most of the times women are blamed for the rape and sexual abuse cases. I have heard even other woman saying ,” aaise ban than ke nikalegi to mardon ki nazar to kharab hogi hi ” ( if she goes out all decked up like this men will get tempted)

“kapde to dekho iske , phir hum aadmiyon ko dosh dete hain ( look at her clothes and then we blame men”)

“aaj kal auraten hi zyada khul khel karti hain , niyota denge to rape to honge hee( these days women have become so outgoing, if they invite, rape will happen”)

I ask those  who blame the woman for “indecent behavior” such as wearing skimpy clothes, going out late at night ot ” inviting” men, are women in burkhas and salwar-kameez not eve-teased, raped or molested?

Don’t rape cases occurs in broad daylight.

What about the little girls who are raped by their own family members, relatives or friends?Child sexual abuse and incest is growing in large proportions. Here is a poem I wrote about it  The Lost Childhood

Do they even know what’s happening to them leave aside” inviting”. what about the old woman who could never dream that she too can fall prey to these lecherous men?

What about women who are raped in police custody by the very people who are supposed to protect her?

What about  Aruna Shanbaug who was attacked with a dog chain and brutally raped in the very hospital where she was a nurse, and abandoned by her family thereafter.The rapist was convicted for seven years in jail, and is believed to have started a new life in another hospital in New Delhi.  She lies in a state of coma in a room of the same hospital for the last 37 years. What was her fault ?

How did a nine year old ” provoke ” a man to rape her in Goa ? Link

Why there is always a “moral code of conduct” for women? Why women are blamed for a crime where they are the victims?Why can’t they live the way they want to without the fear of sexual abuse, molestation, rape hanging over them?

Why the rapists do not get punished severely, Why the cases are not registered and those which are , never get justice?

Why there is this widespread misconception that women are sexually available and that some men simply cannot help themselves?

What about rape within marriage ? Who is responsible for this intimate betrayal? A crime which is  not even considered a crime?

I wrote a post on this sometime back  marital rape

A few days back I got a twitpic from a friend originally posted on Jagori.org

Came across this Jagori.org poster (Credits: London Rape Crisis Centre) entitled “बलात्कार से बचाव के लिए मार्गदर्शन” translates to “Guidelines for prevention from Rape” #women

This fried wanted me to do the translation for this. This what he posted LINK

This what I translated

Do not step out in the darkness
it is an invitation to men
do not step out alone anytime
in any case it is an invitation to men
do not stay inside the home
for both relatives and guest can rape
do not stay without clothes
it evokes (boosts)desire in men
do not wear clothes
because these types of clothes
it is an invitation to men
beware of childhood
coz some rapists prefer little girls
beware of old age
some rapists prefer old women
do not have father, uncle, grand father, brother-in-law and brothers
these are the relatives who usually rape the young women of the house
do not have neighbors
they usually rape
do not get married
rape within marriage is permissible
but , if you need full protection
do not live.

The poster tells a story by itself. I wonder how many men will feel ashamed reading this!

we also found an original translation

For how long women will live in fear, suffering at the hands of men is something to think about.

In a country rooted in age-old beliefs, conventions and rules set by men for their benefits and convenience, a woman has little say. She is either a ” virgin wife” or a “slut” there is no in betweens. Any woman who stands up to raise her voice against the unjust society, who breaks free of the “usual social norms” is crushed brutally.

Rape victims live a life of humiliation, are denyed justice most of the time. They are conditioned to believe that they are the cause of their misery and the best thing to do is remain silent.Who wants to be humiliated twice in a society where law makers to law breakers all men speak one language: A woman who “asks for it” ” gets it”.

Is a woman safe from the time she is born till the time she dies? At every step she faces challenges which threaten her very existence.  All her life a woman’s conduct is put under scanner. Her every word is daubted. She has to prove her innocence, her purity at all levels.  Lines are drawn for them but never for the men. She is not “allowed” to step out of the ” laxman rekha” ( her line of conduct) and has to give ” agni pareeksha” (proof) for the things she is not responsible.

WHY?

Why

why the blame is always shifted to women? Even when she is raped, assaulted, burnt, termed a witch it is her fault. Men are never wrong. How inhumanly unfair is that?

I remember reading in ‘A thousand splendid suns’, “A man’s pointing finger will always find a women to blame” .

The moment a rape occurs people raise fingers at the ” loose character” of the girl/woman. If some men get “provoked” enough to rape by mere sight of a woman and can not control themselves  and are compelled to commit the crime then the only sentence should be castration.

Came across this blog which is a must read Rape Culture

Isn’t it time we stopped these double standards in the code of conduct for women and men? It is unfortunate that women from one generation to the other pass on the legacy of these utterly rubbish ideas of a woman being responsible for any sexual advancement towards her. It is time to set an example by making strict laws and enforcing them with even more strictness. It is time to give complete support, counselling, justice  to rape victims and not judge them and humiliate them further.

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12 thoughts on “Rape : Blame the Rapist not the Victim

  1. And, one of my roomies, while watching a dialogue in a movie said, ‘Ek to aava kapda pehre chhe ne paachhi potani sanskari kahe chhe’ (One on hand, she wears such clothes and on the other hand, she calls herself cultured).

    It’s a big social problem. It’s the way of thinking of the masses that needs to change. And, it looks very unlikely that it would happen soon.

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  2. If the law stops supporting the criminal and starts realising that the victims’ life style, dressing style, timings, etc does not excuse a sexual crime, maybe we will see more convictions and once the criminal is punished, and condemned strongly, some fear might discourage a criminal. As of now there is a knowledge that ‘shame’ would prevent a victim’s family from taking serious action against a sexual offender.
    We can change this.

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  3. I wonder if anything will change… will it change in our lifetime or do we live to hear these news everyday.

    At times wonder whether it will make any difference to these men if the woman claims to be affected of AIDS. I know it is not solving the problem.. but still…

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  4. ‘A man’s pointing finger will always find a women to blame’ – That about sums it up. It is such a sad state where for crimes like rapes, not only is the rapist allowed to escape without conviction in most cases, the victim is also blamed for it. Unless the society stops blaming the victim, rape will continue to be the easiest crime to get away with.

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  5. “She said in hushed voice, ” it does not matter if you are old or young , beautiful or ugly, rich or poor, what matters is you are a woman. what they(men) need is a hole and two boobs.”

    That is the shocking and sad truth.

    It doesn’t matter what women wear. They will be targeted no matter what.

    Women get blamed for wearing “western” clothes.
    Women get blamed for stepping out of the house after dark.
    Women get blamed stepping out of the house. (in many cases)

    I don’t understand why society is unsympathetic to women esp. victims. Why always the blame falls on her?

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  6. what a mind blowing post it was… so heartfully presented like only a girl can!! i respect the women and the strentgh they have…

    i wrote an article on the same topic and i got some horrible reactions here it is:

    http://desicritics.org/2009/07/15/205137.php

    also i think it will be apt to mention Sunitha Krishnan by what happened to her and what she is doing now.. i strongly recommend you to go thru her speech at TED on youtube you’ll be moved.

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  7. I think we need amends in the law. People who are raped should be castrated with immediate effect. Not that would reduce the pain of the victim but atleast one rapist is out of the way for ever.

    In the middle east they cut hands, and we need to start slaughtering the rapists penis, then they will understand how it feels and how wrong it is.

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  8. Pingback: Tweets that mention Rape : Blame the Rapist not the Victim « Spinning a Yarn Of Life -- Topsy.com

  9. Dear Tikuli
    I read the post in about 10 minutes but it took me almost an hour to get my head around everything you have said. In one post you have successfully and succinctly put forth almost every aspect of this unpardonable crime committed against women irrespective of their age, background and the like.
    Reminds me of the recent report where a UK institute claimed that rapists are usually people with inferiority complexes that push them to rape someone and (apparently) vindicate their superiority…
    However it has also to do with the fact that instead of the fairer sex (a very acceptable epithet by all standards), the females of our society are referred to as the weaker sex – abala! What is probably required is a shift in focus of mindset through proper education in guys and girls both… girls should be taught to feel themselves equal to any task (or deliver KO ballbusters at the very least) while guys need to be taught very clearly the value of respecting women… even today educated parents are known to tell their boys that women (read wives) are always secondary in hierarchy…
    A simple difference.. most of us refer to our dad as “aap” and mom as “tu/tum”… yes while the latter is probably more personal and less informal, try calling dad “tu/tum” and you get the hiding of your life for lack of respect…
    This is the mindset that needs to go….
    Great post… please keep it up… I’m going to retweet this!

    Like

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