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Why women in India are still victim of the Society and Law?

According to the latest government figures, Indian police registered nearly 33,658 cases of rape in 2017

Tuesday December 10, 2019 12:49 PM, Pradip Bhattacharya, ummid.com

Crime against women statistics

Rape-cum-murder is indeed a brutal and heinous crime in our society. The only solution that most people in India thinking of right now is killing the criminals, instead of eliminating the crimes.

The rape and horrific murder of a Hyderabad doctor and another concurrent incident of Unnao rape and gruesome deaths have shaken many in India. A wave of public demonstrations across the country demands justice and crack down on sexual assault. Human rights organizations, NGOs, Parliamentarians, lawmakers call for swift actions to protect women in the future.

Last month, on November 28, 2019, protests broke out across India after news of a horrific gang rape exploded into global limelight. After the rape and murder of the veterinary doctor in Hyderabad, another troubling rape and murder case of Unnao was brought to a sudden and shocking end. What is most shocking is that after the shoot-out case of Hyderabad, people across the country are asking for similar punishment for every rape case? This seems an eye for an eye is presented as the ultimate solution: You rape, we hang or kill!!

After the Hyderabad rape and murder case most people were demanding the death penalty in such cases. But now, those who have sympathized with the 23-year-old rape victim of Unnao set on fire by five men, are demanding shoot out plan like Telangana. This shows a loss of faith in the ability of the nation and states to enforce the rule of law. It shows that people are angry and frustrated and that they do not see any other way out.

Soon after the news of encounter came out, people across the country were in a jubilant mood and raised slogans lauding the police. Although Rights activists questioned the police’s account, many Indians including the lawmakers in the Indian Parliament celebrated and supported the shoot-out in Hyderabad.

Although we heard a lot of debate in Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha over the Hyderabad doctor or Unnao murder and rape we heard neither any discussion about creating stringent laws that could prevent such incidents in future nor about improving the existing ones. We saw a similar uproar in the Parliament in 2012 as well for Nirbhaya.

While writing a piece on Hyderabad or Unnao rape case, one finds that these two incidents are a rehash of the 2012 rape and murder case of Nirbhaya, the fatal gang-rape of a medical student on a moving bus that shocked the country. All these cases were so brutal and indeed shocked the world and jolted the Indian legal system.

Nirbhaya Fund

According to the latest government figures, Indian police registered nearly 33,658 cases of rape in 2017 — an average of 92 rapes every day. The 2017 statistics of the National Crime Records Bureau show 3,59,849 incidents of crime against women were recorded in one year. After Unnao and Hyderabad case uproar in Parliament, Congress party has cited the figures that are alarming in the country. When the Supreme Court called for the data in January 2019, it was found that Uttar Pradesh was leading the chart with 3,457 child rape incidents in one year. The reported data tells that there are 984 rapes, which accounts for 38 rapes per hour and two every three minutes. A statistical figure issued by Congress Party says in 2017, the crimes against women have increased in BJP ruled states by 9 per cent placing states like Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh on the top. In 2017, the reported crime against women was 3.6 lakhs against a similar data 3.4 lakhs witnessed in 2014.

In 2013, the Finance Minister of Congress party then announced the establishment of the Nirbhaya Fund, aimed at funding initiatives for women’s safety, security, and economic empowerment. But even today, many raised doubts on the Modi government of failing to utilize the money under the Nirbhaya Fund for the safety of women in the country. Statistics released by Congress party shows that out of Rs 1584 crore fund allotted for Nirbhaya Fund, only Rs 147 crore has been used. This means that 92 percent of the total amount allotted has been left unused. However, on Thursday, the MHA released another Rs 100 crore for setting up of women help desk at police stations across the country.

Most Dangerous Country for women

In March 2013, the Nirbhaya Act came into existence after the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha (India’s “Council of States”) passed amendments—the Criminal Law (Amendment) Act, 2013- to the Indian Penal Code of Criminal Procedure 1973, on punishments for sexual assault. The Nirbhaya Act criminalized sexual offenses like acid attacks, voyeurism, and stalking, and provided for 20-years prison sentences for rape and the death penalty. Although the government has doubled prison terms for rapists to 20 years, civil society activists continue to demand a quicker implementation of the laws.

India’s Congress leader Rahul Gandhi did admit that India is fast becoming the "rape capital" of the world. Probably making us all know how shamelessly women are treated even after rape! A rape and horrific murder is a heinous crime and indeed very brutal. His statement is quite harsh but then none can deny that rape also becomes a political issue very often in India.

[All images and graphics tweeted by the Congress party.]

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