Requiescat in pace, my Sister from Delhi

Dear Sister,

Can I call you that? I’m afraid I never dared give you a name, not even a symbolic one. And Nirbhaya, Ragini, Damini, these are not your names. No, you had your own name, your own identity, and an entire lifetime that no one can take away from you. You laughed, and lived, and loved.

And you fought, suffered and were brutally murdered.

I wish I could say I was here to celebrate your life, but I know nothing about you. Why don’t I know your name? Why do we live in the kind of society where the victim of a crime has to be hidden for fear of social stigma? What social stigma? For being attacked? For surviving it? I wish I could say I hate them, sister, but I’m one of them too. And, through all these years, through all these crimes that we’ve been hearing about, we’ve kept quiet, and you paid the price in full.

So, no, I’m not here to celebrate anything. I’m here for the lifetime that they did take away from you, sister. The lifetime we let them take away from you in one single horrific hour. As an entire nation, as a society, we waited and we watched as our women were raped and brutalized, and we bought bigger locks and better alarm systems, and we told our friends and daughters and sisters and mothers to be careful. But, we never said a word against them.

And, now we’ve killed you…

How does it help you to know that we’re all distraught over your death? How does it help you to know that people will cry for you, are already doing so? How does it help you to know that I don’t even dare to sleep tonight because I’m afraid I’ll dream of you? For, I’m too ashamed to look you in the eye, Sister. I don’t know what I would say to you.

“All Indians are my brothers and sisters”, our school used to make us say, every single morning, come rain or shine or bomb squads. Children regularly fainted and threw up, and a lot of parents complained. Our school built a roof, put up some fans, but we never missed a day of the morning assembly. The Pledge and the National Anthem.

What good were those vows, sister? And, what would our founding fathers say about this absurd hatred that has pervaded Indian society? Because, in India at least, Rape is more of a hate crime than just an instance of gender violence. A large part of India is literally misogynistic, and the passion with which they hate women is just overwhelming. I have a theory on this; I believe that these men represent the part of India that has long been fed on films and movies where the hero “woos” the girl by following her around, stalking her and whistling at her on the streets. These men take these ideas and apply them in regular life, and seek to approach “modern” women in the same way, expecting to be positively acknowledged. When these women express fear or disgust, these men perceive that they have been rejected or rebuked, and start hating women with a passion, because they know that once women achieve sexual liberation as a nation, no woman in their right minds would marry the likes of them. And, here I blame arranged marriages, because if people were left to themselves, the idiots and the misogynists would be automatically weeded out.

But how does any of this matter to you now, Sister?

I want to live” I know you never said those words; you were raped and sodomized and beaten so badly that you couldn’t even speak.. But, in my mind, you are forever going to be saying those words to me, dearest sister.

And, I shall be forever failing you…

Six Men. Six men against one young girl. Our country should be ashamed for ourselves. That’s the culture we have? A culture of cowards? Because, believe me when I say this: I am not a feminist, I am an individualist, and that just makes me a whole lot more dangerous, and a whole lot more enraged. And there is nothing I loathe more than the cruelty of cowardice. It’s beyond despicable. A man raped a two year old baby, after tying her legs together, the day after they tortured you for an hour. She died two days ago.. Was she out at an inappropriate hour? Was she dressed in “immodest attire”? Was she behaving “inappropriately”? No. She wasn’t raped for any of the reasons they like to throw in our faces, sister. She was raped because we have a law and order problem. She was raped because our country is still stuck in a misogynistic mindset best represented by the son of the Indian President when he said that it is not protesting if women “go to discotheques at night and candle-light vigils in the day”. Mind you, sister, this is the idiot who also said that the women at the venue were too beautiful to be protesters, so we are terrified at the fact that these are the people who are our law-makers.

Our law-makers? No wonder nothing has changed. No wonder that infant was so brutally raped that she succumbed to her injuries a day after fighting for her barely-begun life. She is dead today, because our country is inept, apathetic and corrupt beyond comprehension. These are the same reasons why six drunk men felt confident enough in attacking you and your boyfriend in a bus, and then raping you as they beat him unconscious. Can we even imagine the agony of that moment? No. But, my mind won’t stop trying, sister, and it hurts so bad.

And, what about the love you have left behind? My heart bleeds for you, young Ser. And, I swear to you, I swear that I will never stop fighting. Never. I wish I knew her name so it could be the one I whisper before I ever do anything and everything in my power to destroy this rape-culture that we all helped bring into existence.

Because there is a rape culture here. One that is so pervasive, living a normal life has become impossible in this country if you are a woman. For all the men reading this, imagine what it would feel like if you were always at war, lets say with Pakistan, and that we lived on some border. Where some unidentified person can just come and pick you up and take you away if you don’t keep your eyes open wide enough, phone always in hand while walking in an empty locality, edging away from cars that slow down at footpaths. You guys, it’s become physically exhausting and intolerable. And, yes, you can empathize, and I’m so glad you do, because we need every single ally we can all get, but the fact remains that a lot of men don’t want to see women raped, yet half of them still talk in terms of protecting a lady’s modesty instead of giving her her rights.

Five years ago, my senior from college was viciously stabbed to death as he stood up against some miscreants who were harassing a fellow student. A few months back, my junior was raped. And, now they’ve killed you. Please forgive me if I leave it up to the good people of this country to make sure that the perpetrators, your assailants, get the “justice” you deserve. (The “justice” they deserve… I fear humanity cannot provide) I intend to make it my life’s goal that this Country becomes the kind of place where both men and women can walk out of their doors at any point of time, knowing that their constitutional right to life guarantees them the safety they deserve. The safety we deserve. The safety you deserved…

And, what is expected is not even idealistic. It is only realistic that the State provide you with security regardless of your gender, or the time. And, when I say “provide you with security”, I mean a secure neighborhood and country, where crimes are the anomalies, not the norm. What we have now is rampant abuse of the law and an inefficient bureaucratic set-up that works for no one but those who are corrupt and apathetic.

Because, they are well protected. They have their chauffeur driven cars, and their servants to go to the market, and their guards to watch their homes. They don’t care about you and I. They don’t care that even the drunk scum who met you on the bus dared to ask you why you were out alone with a man because our well-protected politicians themselves keep saying those words. Our government has been screaming those questions out so loud – “Why were you out?”, “Who were you with?”, “What were you wearing?”, that even the rapists have realized that they’re the lucky ones in this entire scenario.

You’re only the one who died…

Not even the most brutal torture can bring you back. Not the most painful punishment is going to make your boyfriend or your family feel any better. But you asked us to make sure they’re caught and punished, and they will be.

But, they’re not the reason you are dead, they are just the way it happened. Our society is to blame for your funeral. We are to blame for what they did to you.

I just can’t get over the fact that for 10 days, you were fighting this, and you told all of us that you wanted to live.

We did nothing to protect you.

And we couldn’t do anything to save you.

Forgive me, Sister.

Shamefully Indian but Proudly yours,



Public Debate: What to do with the Rapers, and can men empathize with women?

Parties to this discussion:

Enraged Citizen: Final Year Law Student in the role of an enraged citizen of the Indian State.

Vengeful Sympathetic Male : Wants the strictest punishment for all rapists.

Angry College Girl: Men cannot empathize with women.

Lawful Citizen: Fears for safety, and is upset with the rampant abuse of law

Legally Bound: Believes the rule of law must prevail.

Virtual Protester: Bordering on Anarchy

(OP) Enraged Citizen: She said she wanted to live. I hate you All. I hate us All. I hope this country burns to the ground now. You can kill each other in the name of religion. Now fucking do it for her. And, Legally Bound, don’t talk to me about responsibility or rebuilding or fixing anything. As a nation, we don’t deserve to exist, you know that? Yes, it is spectacular that India has managed to exist as a democracy, the World’s largest democracy. The world’s largest farce, you mean. We should stop pretending. We don’t deserve any better. Fuck Joker, man, I wish I was Ra’s Al Ghul right now. You know why? Because there is no Batman, and she’s dead, and that 17 year old is dead, and a thousand more will be soon, and it’s all our fault.

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: see now u are talking my language …. get pissed off, get angry , there has to be blood

Enraged Citizen: And, Blood there shall be. I swear it.

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: shit keepin u up all night?

Enraged Citizen: I wouldn’t dare sleep now.

Lawful Citizen: I sincerely hope that justice is done and that now the highest possible punishment that is the death penalty be given to all the rapists involved! May her soul rest in peace and god give courage and peace to victim’s family members!

Vengeful Sympathetic Male:  death penalty is lenient i wanna do the hostel scene with the fuckers, shoud first sodomise them with a hot poker then give them the old pullin out the digits then comes the eye poking out etc etc. she lived for like 10 days after her experience they shouldnt die quick

  • Enraged Citizen: God’s a kid with an ant farm. If he couldn’t stop them from raping her, he sure as hell is not going to go about dispensing courage and peace. And, how can Justice be done? You tell me, Lawful_Citizen. What in the World can you possibly do in this case to ensure that justice is done? And, is there anything anyone can do to bring her back? And, what about her friend. he’s gonna be fucking traumatized for the rest of his life. And, can’t you see, it’s not just them that killed her?? People have been dying in such horrific ways for years, and if we had had the courage or the concern to start talking about these things a little earlier, maybe it wouldn’t haev even come to this.
  • So, you see, you and I killed her, Lawful_Citizen. What punishment do we deserve now?

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: i wanna go through the horrible experience of watching them get mutilated

Enraged Citizen: not even the most brutal torture can bring her back. Not the most painful punishment is gonna make her boyfriend or her family feel any better. Torturing them, that’s just selfish, and it’s more attention than they deserve. They should just be exiled to outer space. Or the Desert. They’re not even worth killing. And, they’re not the problem. God, I just can’t get over the fact that for 10 days, she’s been fighting this, and she told all of us that she wanted to live. And we couldn’t do anything.

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: we suck!!!!!

Lawful Citizen: Enraged Citizen, we cannot be fatalistic or philosophical about this whole deplorable incident and my point is that something urgently needs to be done to restore some sense of order and that something begins with punishing the perpetrators of this heinous act..I am not saying or implying that it would be adequate or that it would bring back the victim but it would be something close to justice, however far actually it might be from it…society needs to know that such heinous and sordid incidents will not be tolerated by us as a whole!

Angry Young Lady: Not until 6 men rape one man will the men in this country learn a lesson. Let them fear their lives the way we fear ours. Let them stand on this side of the fence once. Just once. Then and only then should they be entitled to an opinion. R.I.P superwoman. You’re a fighter. Respect.

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: hey i resent that comment. why do u think i cannot empathize just cause i am a dude.

Lawful citizen: Ditto

Angry Young Lady: Empathy (n.) – Understanding what someone else is feeling because you have experienced it yourself or can put yourself in their shoes.

Enraged citizen: No, let’s not fight amongst each other. Please. Not tonight, alright?? Vengeful_Sympathetic_Male, all Angry_Young_Lady is trying to say is that there is a rape culture that is so pervasive, living a normal life has become impossible in this country if you are a woman. Imagine what it would feel like if you are always at war, that some unidentified person can just come and pick you up and take you away if you don’t keep your eyes open wide enough, phone in hand while walking in a empty locality, edge away from cars that slow down at footpaths. You guys, it’s become physically exhaustible and intolerable. And, yes, you can empathize, and I’m so glad you do, because we need every single ally we can all get, but the fact remains that a lot of men don’t want to see women raped, yet half of them still talk in terms of protecting a lady’s modesty instead of giving her her rights. All Angry_young_Lady is trying to say, in this moment of anger, is that men don’t understand why we want this so badly.

Specter M: We shouldn’t let go of the anger. Channel it. Get things done and fast. [But what is to be done? How is it to be done?] Her death shouldn’t be in vain. The shit has hit the fan you guys!!! The whole country should be in flames now. Another story goes into the archives. Another testimony to the apathy, the lack of courage. Another girl succumbed. Another ‘law’. Another (lost) ’cause’. Just another f***ing day …  What has the world come to? How did it get so messed up? What happened? Where did we go wrong? Who has the answers? Anyone? Anyone?

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: Angry Young Lady, i can imagine fear cause it is something everyone can feel, fear has nothing to do with ur gender . besides i am in no mood to get into an argument about that. i believe i can freely make any comment i fucking please cause i am only expressing my anger

Angry young Lady: You can sympathize all you want. But you will never be able to empathize with a rape survivor. You know why? Because you can never imagine yourself to be in her position. Not even in your wildest dreams. You can walk out on the road at anytime of the day or night, ask strangers for a lift when in need, wear whatever you wish, drink as much as you like and NOT FEAR FOR YOUR LIFE!

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: oh get off ur feminist horse and get with the program, this is a problem that we have to face as a society not just women

Angry Young Lady: You classify a woman expressing her anger against men as a feminist and in the same breath expect to “empathize” with one that has been raped? Hahaha. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not blaming you for anything or accusing you for any omissions. I’m simply saying that you cannot feel what a woman can feel with regard to this incident. And that’s a fact. Its like we can sympathize with a guy who gets kicked on his balls, but we can never really feel his pain. Bad analogy, but similar principle.

Enraged Citizen: I think she was responding more to Lawful_Citizen’s comment about hanging them than yours. Please, niggers, the British managed to separate the Hindus and Muslims, let’s not let our own government divide us into women and men. Seriously, it is not a Man vs Woman issue. Angry_young_lady, though I fully empathize with your anger, is it not true that women also hold this view? Our women scientists, our women ministers, aunties sitting at home, and women who frequently serve as accomplices to rapes; these women actually hold the view that in this World, a woman cannot own a vagina (Movie reference). The point is there is a fence, but it does not stand between men and women; it stands between those with a closed off mentality that are threatened by female sexuality, and those that welcome such a liberation. And, both men and women stand on both sides. VSM may not have had to fear for his own life or safety, but any man who belongs to this side of the fence has spent enough time dealing with these issues through his life. Let’s not alienate those who agree our rights are more important than just god-damned modesty. There are few enough of us as there are!

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: u tell her Enraged_Citizen, ……….hey i am on ur side of the issue, i just want to be able to voice my opinion too ,y should it matter if i have a penis……penis shmeenis we are all people here!!!

Enraged Citizen: Nice analogy, though. That does put things into perspective. And proves both your points, VSM and AYL! We can still empathize with men, and they can empathize with us, even if we can’t feel the same things or imagine what they feel like, and vice versa.

Angry young Lady: Its absolutely not a man v. woman issue. And I’m not making it out to be, either. My god. Vengeful_Sympathetic_Male, please calm down. And please just once read up the difference between empathy and sympathy. You cannot empathize with her, is all I’m saying. And that doesn’t make you bad or anything. Its just how the society is. Men almost don’t get raped at all. Period. Also, my comment wasn’t directed to you or your friend. My comment was directed to the men in the country who “need to learn a lesson”. You’re entitled to all the opinions in the world. Freedom of speech FTW!

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: also maybe i used the wrong word instead of empathy maybe i should have used the word compassion. sorry @nalini if my vocabulary fails me at times. see we were thinking the same thing

Angry Young Lady: And we’re angry at the same people.

Enraged citizen: ❤ … Yuck, these facebook hearts are damn gay. (no offense to homosexual individuals)

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: absolutely so who is up for slaughtering the fuckers not for justice or anythin but just cause we are angry. call me sadistic but i would like it very much

Angry young Lady: Enraged_Citizen, also a little inappropriate in a discussion where rapes, women’s rights, freedom of speech, deteriorating state of the country, fuckall politicians etc are being discussed, don’t you think?

Enraged Citizen: I applojjize. May I withdraw my statement? 😐

Vengeful Sympathetic Male: damn i gotta catch a flight to namma bengaluru, would totally love to stay and curse on them assholes for a while

Enraged citizen: S’okay. You have a safe flight, bruv. The Rage is Relentless. We’re not going anywhere.

Virtual Protester: Something urgently needs to be done to restore some sense of order? I have no idea what that is even supposed to mean. Seriously. I think it’s high time we get rid of that inner conflict within us between what’s idealist and what’s realistic. What is idealistic IS realistic. If you don’t live your life like that every day then be ready to make compromises all throughout your life. Please don’t take any of this seriously, but if it applies please do.

Enraged Citizen: And what is expected is not even idealistic… It is only realistic that the State provide you with security regardless of your gender, or the time..

Lawful Citizen: plz desist from quoting out of context…read comment in entirety & context in which it is made!

Enraged Citizen: And, when I say “provide you with security”, I mean a secure neighborhood and country, where crimes are the anomalies, not the norm. What we have now is rampant abuse of the law and an inefficient bureaucratic set-up that works for no one but those who are corrupt and apathetic.

Lawful citizen: I meant that there would be order through better provision for security of our citizens and prevalence of rule of law!

Virtual Protester: I thought that you were referring to the protesters. Either way, I still meant that. And fuck that, go buy yourself some tasers/knives/pepper spray from brigade road. I know a guy who knows a guy. Protect yourself till we figure out this rule of law thing.

Lawful Citizen: Try and redirect your anger or whatever it is towards the govt and police or whoever is responsible for safety of citizens!

Late Entrant Girl: Monsters! Monsters! Monsters!! Ugh. Burn in hell! And yes let’s go get us some knives and tasers. 😐

Horrified Citizen: its horrific thats all i can say

Voice of Reason: Things will get better. Do not lose hope. We’ve been living in a world far worse for far longer, it’s events like these which open our eyes, rip us out of our cocoons and make us realize that humanity is scum. Be mad, rage, talk, think, influence attitudes around you as much as you can. It is the miniscule, seemingly insignificant stuff which brings about change, when done over and over again.

Legally Bound: We all feel pain, We are all hurt, We are angry. It tells us that we are human. As a nation we have passed through a cathartic event, which didn’t show us something new it just opened our eyes to a reality that had been swept under the carpet. The brutality of her death, finally woke people up to the fact that in Independent India women are not thought of as full citizens. However, this is not the fault of India or the ideal of India or even the reality of India envisioned by the great men and women of her past. You are right that if we do not ensure that the Constitution and its basic rights are not available to all citizens of India, the Country will burn. It is inevitable. But i still say it is not the Country or its laws which are failing it is the people. We the people need to evolve and understand freedom and take steps and even sacrifice to change the minds of people who have themselves been oppressed for aeons. What happened to her showed us how far we have fallen. Let us use our pain and anger to create a better society where men and women are equals not only law but in practice. Maybe, i am idealistic but i do think that social change needs to begin inside us and burning people or things will certainly not change people’s minds. I am sure women don’t want to be feared. What sort of society is that.

Enraged Citizen: Women don’t care what it takes, Legally_Bound. And if that is what it takes, that is how it shall be. If there is any other way, of course we would prefer that. We all have “boyfriends” and “husbands”, to borrow the language of the day. heh.

Facebook Debate: What do Rapists deserve?

India Plans to Shame Rapists, Even as Its Cops Shame Rape Victims to Suicide

S: Bastards should be strung up and hung on the streets so every one can see.

M: Sigh. Fortunately or unfortunately, we must advance and not regress, even when it comes to punishment… Still, sometimes I wonder. Anyway, you can’t hang mentalities. Especially not nation-wide mentalities..

S:  I think it will be progress if we can reduce the number of rapes…. ergo…castration and public lynching

M: *grins* Then, I guess rapists should be glad you’re not standing for office. …But, seriously, the way to reduce these crimes is not through fear; that’ll only make misogyny levels rise. What we need is education at a primary level that imparts more moral and sexual education than “boys and girls should not sit together” in class.

S: thats cool and all but as long as these assholes get away with light sentences there is no hope, imagine one of those delhi fuckers is gonna be out of jail in less than a year just cause he is a couple of months shy of his 18th birthday. and yes i wish i could get elected to some sort of office where i get to lay some HOSTEL type torture on them rapists

M: The law is (supposed to be) the codification of the most logical and rational principles of human behavior; It cannot successfully fix problems that arise at a societal level, but only rein them in while society does the rest. We are society. If India doesn’t come up with a solution, and fast, it’s only a matter of time before Vigilante justice takes over.. And, as bad as that might be, can you blame me if I think it might actually do some good? We have an unarmed citizenry constantly brutalized by armed criminal miscreants and apathetic State machinery. At least the Vigilantes will be of the people, by the people, for the people.

S: yuh The Revolution is coming !!!!! and screw our outdated legal system which was meant for a different time , which is the main reason why i didnt go ahead and practice

M: The Revolution is here!  (And, yes, the legal system is damn fucked up.. But, ignoring it isn’t going to make it any better! -_-)

S: and this is no democracy where the 5-0 (popo) is happily off committing rapes and our political figures are all criminals themselves making chauvinist remarks on national tV

M: Exactly why I said that it’s a deep rooted mentality that we’re dealing with rather than just a few anti-social elements! The rapists *are* the social elements of the day! And, the only thing that can fix that is education. For starters, I think we need to stop some corruption so that we can use that money to increase pay-scales of teachers and police officers. That’s the only way that these two forces will adequately represent the interests of all facets of society, and not just of the rich and powerful who can not only buy them, but sexually assault their daughters, and shoot them dead if they dare raise their own voices.

S: ONE DAY, ONE fucking DAY everyone will get whats coming to them

M: 😦 I hope so, S-san. I truly do…

“The Problem is Apathy, not Activism”

Every single Indian needs to read this *right now*.
…Thank you, Ser.

Smoke Signals

News has four cycles.

There is, first, the child, flapping its arms and legs and yelping in excitement at having been presented with a brand new shiny object, wondering what to do with it: toss it in the air? Kick it? Try and stuff it, whole and entire, into the mouth? (Think of days one and two of the aftermath of the Delhi rape, when ‘coverage’ was a series of increasingly shrill freeform yelps without coherence or substance but with lots of lung powering it.)

Then the teen, as volubly excited but with a greater awareness of his peers. (That channel had the home minister on the griddle and called for the resignation of the police commissioner? We need to ask for someone’s resignation too. Oh and that other media house? It gave the victim a symbolic name — that’s so cool; we need to give her…

View original post 1,972 more words

Delhi victim should have meekly submitted to gang rape: Woman scientist

Link to News Report: Here

I was actually expecting her to have said something along the lines of how human life is too precious to be lost while protecting one’s dignity, or something even remotely graceful, but instead, this is what she has to say:

why was the victim out of her house after 10 pm” and “if a girl will wander late at night with her boyfriend; such situations are bound to happen.

Such situations are bound to happen? Such situations are bound to fucking happen?! What hope does our country have when educated women themselves are stuck in mindsets that seem to be unable to comprehend that we live in a lawful society, let alone expect that the law actually be enforced? What the hell is the point of being a citizen of a country that is supposed to have a civilized society, madam?

Jesus Christ.

Why should she have been a bit careful? Are we not living in such a so-called “civilized society”? Was she not a human being, with all the rights guaranteed to her under the constitution, including especially the right to life, which those sick individuals had NO right to violate, regardless of where she was, who she was with, or what time it was?

This is the problem with our country. And this is very the definition of VICTIM BLAMING, brothers and sisters. Why was she out so late? Who was she with? What was she doing? What was she wearing? Who the hell cares? Even if she was running around on the streets naked, she is still NOT asking to be raped. In fact, if you or I are to walk around in bikinis on the road, and someone whistles at us, it is still HARASSMENT.

Why don’t you ask “Why did those men rape her?” Or why is Delhi “a city like Delhi” in the first place? I’ll tell you why! It’s because all the people “hide” their women in their houses, as if they were precious objects that could get snatched and violated and “destroyed”. If you’re a boy, you can do as you please, but if you are a girl, what business do you have going anywhere from school/college? What kind of women do that?

Well, what kind of life is this, I ask? I want to step out at any time I please. I want to wear whatever makes me feel good. I want to LIVE my life. I don’t want to hide from sick, perverted creeps that are supposed to be kept off our streets!

There’s this thing called the social contract. It says that at the time of forming governments, it is as if the individuals give up some of their basic rights such as the pre-emptive right to protect their own lives, or seek justice for wrongs done to them, and hand over these rights to the government, who then swears to undertake the duty of protecting them. It’s a freaking contract. It’s their DUTY to protect every citizen. So, why should she have been more careful? How much more effing careful?! First midnight is too late, then 11, now it’s 9:30. When does this psychotic behavior end?? And, when will you all see that the answer doesn’t lie in hiding; the answer lies in occupying the streets! The streets of Delhi will only be safer when it’s full of free confident, sexy women, and non-sexually-starved young men; not when we promote and encourage criminals by telling girls that they “should be a bit careful” if they don’t want to “get raped”. Get raped. Like it’s some sort of disease you can avoid by “taking care”.

No. I refuse. What is unsafe about entering a bus at 09:30 pm at night? What is careless about it?! The problem with placing any amount of responsibility on the victims/survivors is that it is a very slippery slope. Today, you say that women must be escorted at night for their own safety, tomorrow you regulate their working hours to day-times, and the day after you suggest that they be married off at 16 to prevent them from being raped. 

The answer lies in dispelling these notions, and the only way that can be done is by STRONGLY and clearly always expressing the clearest intolerance for the perpetrators of such crime and placing ZERO responsibility or duty on the victim. 

There is nothing about our society that excuses such criminal behavior. If we can’t handle it, then we should stop claiming to be a blooming fucking super-power and admit that we’re a bunch of barbarians. If we’re going to pretend otherwise, and have fancy hotels, and tons of billionaires, and a thriving film industry, the least we can do is EXPECT some lawfulness in our country. Don’t you think?

The Rage MUST be Relentless. And we must not forget that our sister in Singapore is only one amongst the hundreds who are brutally abused on a daily basis. For all of them, and the ones who might be spared such a fate, we have to present a strong united front, where the only guilty ones are the ones who commit the crimes, and it is them alone who are responsible!

I believe that every time one of us says that “Well, it is very bad what happened to her, but she should have been a bit more careful”, we’re directly encouraging every potential and existing rapist out there. These people feel safe enough to commit their crimes, because they know that at least some of the responsibility is transferable. And, I am asking you to help us change that notion.

Challenge every misogynist statement you hear. Convince your near and dear ones, and those not so near or dear, about where the responsibility for every crime lies. Argue for your right to go out at night, but don’t forget to arm yourself. And, remember, the only thing that can save this country is its own enlightenment. It has to start now.

No one is meekly submitting to anything!

Friends, Indians, Countrymen

Neither the government, nor the police, nor any other paid force is ever going to wake up and go “aww, lets protect our citizens better”. It’s like this, 

Example 1: This guy comes to you and gives you thousands of dollars. Says that he gambles, but doesn’t trust himself to not lose the money or get robbed, so he just wants to stash it in one of your unused cupboards. You say okay, and everything is fine at first, until you notice that he never really bothers counting the money, and is forever throwing in bundles, and pulling them out. How tempted will you be to take that money? Now, suppose there are three of you in that house. If one guy says “Fuck it, man. He’s never gonna notice, lemme take some.”, how long will it be before the others follow suit?

Example 2: You’ve employed a lady to cook your food and clean your kitchen. At first, she’s amazingly efficient, and tidy. The food tastes great, and the kitchen is all sparkly. But, suppose you never ask her to do anything, never insist that she dust something or cleans something else, are you really going to be surprised when it all comes to a bare essentials kind of set-up?

What I’m trying to say is, don’t you think it’s kinda crazy to hand over all those individual rights and liberties (which we do, by the way, in exchange for certain securities while being citizens of the State) to an unrelated, external oligarchic system, and just expect them to always do what’s best for us? Even if we’ve shown ourselves to be a sentimental, easily swayed, fanatical mob with no interest or need of long term solutions to any of our problems?

Why do you think the concept of these “Apartment complexes” is so popular in India?? With their own security guards, and their own little pools, and gardens for the children, and gyms for the women? Why, why, why? It’s because, instinctively, everyone knows, everyone is aware that India is in a state of acute lawlessness. Your only hope is private defense. Our only defense is to hole ourselves up in forts and behind barricades to protect ourselves, never once insisting that the State to whom we gave that responsibility live up to it. Never once even bothering to engage in any sort of intelligent debate, because “how does it matter?”, right?

Well, it *does* matter. It matters because unless this country, or any country for that matter, has a responsive, educated and aware civil society, the atrocities will continue.

And we shall have nothing to blame but our own apathy.

Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

The Right to be Free

Excerpt from the speech of Kavita Krishnan, secretary, All India Progressive Women’s Association (AIPWA), as she explains why Sheila Dikshit and the political establishment are responsible for women’s deplorable social status in India.:

This most recent incident is of course the most obvious contradiction — it did not occur late at night, the girl was, in fact, with a male friend — but that is not my argument. I believe even if women walk out on the streets alone, even if it is late at night, why should justifications need to be provided for this, like ‘she has to work late hours’ or ‘she was coming home from a BPO job or a media job’? If she simply wants to go out at night, if she wants to go out and buy a cigarette or go for a walk on the road — is this a crime for women? We do not want to hear this defensive argument that women only leave their homes for work, poor things, what can they do, they are compelled to go out. We believe that regardless of whether she is indoors or outside, whether it is day or night, for whatever reason, however, she may be dressed — women have a right to freedom. And that freedom without fear is what we need to protect, to guard and respect.

I am saying this because I feel that the word ‘safety’ with regard to women has been used far too much — all us women know what this ‘safety’ refers to, we have heard our parents use it, we have heard our communities, our principals, our wardens use it. Women know what ‘safety’ refers to. It means – You behave yourself. You get back into the house. You don’t dress in a particular way. Do not live by your freedom, and this means that you are safe. A whole range of patriarchal laws and institutions tell us what to do in the guise of keeping us ‘safe’. We reject this entire notion. We don’t want it.”

“It’s clear that in this country, if you leave out the women’s movement — everything else, the government, the police, the political parties, the judiciary; when they speak of women’s ‘safety’ they are speaking from within a specific patriarchal understanding of the term. No one is talking about protecting her ‘bekhauf azaadi’, or her freedom to live without fear. These protests on the street today, I hope they continue and grow, because this is where the answer lies — not with CCTV cameras, with death penalty or chemical castration. I am saying this because even though our rage is justified, I am afraid of some of the solutions that are being offered. If the conviction rate for rapists is low, how can death penalty be the solution to the crime? In your entire procedure, the one person you have failed to take seriously is the complainant who was raped. It is an entirely different matter that the laws for rape are also extremely weak and flawed — for instance, if an object is inserted into a woman’s genitals, it is not included within the definition of rape. The recent incident on the bus when tried in court, will not include within the description of rape that the men inserted an iron rod into her vagina — the reason that she is battling for her life today.

I cannot explain in words how relieved I am… to know that we are finally here. Finally.

Rapers and Sexual Harassment: Fight the Law, Fuck the Norm

Wow, look at all the lovely comments on this post. They swear, they abuse, they complain and they whine… but since they’ve also been telling us that certain kinds of clothes will keep a girl safer, as will always carrying a guy around with her, as will not stepping out after dark, along with a thousand other utterly un-helpful suggestions, pardon me if I ignore the primitive dim-wits and speak with the neutrals.

Because, tada, feast upon your Indian society now, dear brothers and sisters! Read these comments, and the thousand others, and cease to wonder why India loves Rape. Look at this case for instance: One botched up sexual harassment, one training-to-be-rapist goes awry, one time a woman decides to take matters into her own hands, she is a “bitch” and a “frustrated whore” and an “indecent person” for swearing at the unlucky Nine-thousandth man who made her mad? 

Oh, even better, she’s over-reacting.

Let me explain. A man is not born a rapist. (Usually) It is a lifetime of encouraged “eve-teasing”, where helpless vulnerable women, usually girls at first, flee from his harmless comments. He is thus emboldened, and moves up to groping and fondling, only to delightedly discover that most women would rather try and escape than try to get him caught or arrested. Some people stop here, the sicker few escalate to Rape. Something like 9,000 molestation ‘adventures’ lead to one rape.

Maybe Nine-thousand is *the* number. In that case, Men in India should stay indoors after 9 pm. Because, every single Indian lady making it to their mid-twenties today is hitting that 9,000 mark.

This? This was only a matter of time. An inevitability. You see, women are like that, what can we do? They much more easily adapt to the division of labor. Okay, so it’s someone else’s job to keep the people, including her and her sisters safe? Cool. Except, things aren’t working out with the Police and all. And, you know us women, totally irrational.

And we’re very very pissed off.

Do any of you dislike it? Good. Excellent. The ones that should be squirming in their chairs, well, they’ll be squirming after this for sure. Does it make you uncomfortable? Well, rape makes the sisters uncomfortable.

And, though slow to anger, hell hath no fury like that of a woman scorned.

For too long, the worst of you have watered the Earth with the blood of our sisters. You know the scariest part? I wish she’d ripped his fuckin’ head off. Even if it’s totally illegal and completely excessive. Because, it isn’t excessive for the girl who has seen a thousand like him, and will unfortunately suffer a 1000 more, and it isn’t excessive for a boy who walks around invading personal space and groping women just because our society is so messed up that it starves young men and women from attention from the opposite sex.

So, yes, this video shows that our society’s going to the dogs, and we have a serious law-and-order problem. Glad to have your attention, gentlemen. Too bad you didn’t realize this 50,000 rapes ago, or you may have saved us a few years, and a few lives.

But, they were only women, right?

*maniacal laugh*

I hope it gets worse. I hope it gets so much worse.

Custodial Torture, Sexual Assault, and a Medal for Gallantry, but for the wrong side.

Perhaps the most chilling is the recent case of Soni Sori, which involves the brutal custodial torture of Soni Sori, a 35 year old adivasi teacher in a government-run school for tribal children in Dantewada, by the Chhastisgarh police. Arrested in October 2011 on unsubstantiated allegations of being a Maoist sympathizer, and acting as a conduit to extort Rs. 1.5 million for the CPI (banned Maoists) from the Essar Group, Sori’s letters from prison reveal a seriously disturbing story. Pulled out of her cell at the Dantewada Police Station on the night between Oct 9th and 11th, Sori was taken to  SP Ankit Garg’s room, where, on his orders, three men stripped her, gave her multiple electric shocks, and inserted stones into her private parts, at which point, she lost consciousness.[1]

The callousness of the Indian State is best demonstrated by the fact that three months later, the same SP Ankit Garg, far from being questioned for his role in the Soni Sori case, was awarded a Police Medal for Gallantry by the government for his role in a counter-insurgency operation that took place in 2010, says the WGHR report. The Supreme Court ordered an independent medical examination of Sori at NRS Medical College, Kolkatta where doctors found stones lodged in her vagina and rectum.

Yet, to this day, not a single FIR has been lodged against the perpetrators. And, Soni Sori is constantly denied the treatment she needs to recover from the brutal assault.

The unnerving part is that her link with human rights activists is all that saved her from a nameless grave, and it chills me to the bone to think of the atrocities that appear to be carried out in these areas with such a blatant disregard for the law and obnoxious impunity.

What is wrong with this Country?!

Petition to get the Perverted Police Punished:

Please sign it?

Matthew 18:15-17

15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.

16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.

[King James Version (KJV)]

Consider me an old fashioned fool, but, somewhere deep down, I’ve always truly believed that all my countrymen (and women) were my brothers, and sisters. Maybe it stems from a near-lifetime of repeating those words every school morning, come rain or sun or hail or bomb scares, or maybe it’s the result of a childhood that viciously stressed on equal treatment for equal people, or maybe I *am* stuck in 2006, back when believing such a thing was still a safe thing to do – regardless of why, I used to believe that.

[Yes, I am aware how incestuous that makes the World, but, well, think of the Egyptians.]

Today, it feels like it’s all just a big joke that someone forgot to let us in on..

Anyway, in a nation that deems it preferable to torture and murder their own flesh and blood in the name of honor, I guess it isn’t really much safer being considered family.

Whatever is, is. The beauty of a/the moment is that it is always changeable, and you never have to stay anywhere for long.

That being said, how do you change the mentality of an entire nation that is literally too worried about unpayable loans and starvation to care much for anything else..? Even if it is the constitutionally guaranteed freedom to life..

And, with every day, with every senseless murder, with every brutal assault, every botched up investigation, and every corrupt politician let off, every case of custodial death, and torture, and every piece of shoddy, depraved, sensationalized reporting, I wait for the people to notice. I wait for the angry roar of the sleeping giant that is the masses; wait for them to wake up and scream: ENOUGH!

But, with every day, I begin to believe that nothing can wake this giant. Not even rivers of blood.

And, we are all swimming in them, you know.

And, we shall drown in them.

But, that’s morbid enough. And, it isn’t why I came here.

I came here to say that enough is enough. And that the craziness needs to stop.

Consider yourselves warned.

And, keep in mind, dear brothers and sisters..

The cornered don’t react well to threats.