Is Mumbai Safe for Women? I don’t feel proud today


23protest2I was in a very good mood during the day when some unexpected magic unfurled itself only to sink into a depressing state later during the day as I watched with horror on TV the gang rape of the 22 year old photo journalist intern in Mumbai. I am mortified to see something like this happening in a city like Mumbai which was considered to be a safe haven for women. I cannot come to terms with this dastard crime anymore! For someone who was not born in Mumbai but spent six years in maximum city, I took pride to call myself a proud Mumbaikar and walked with pride when I saw women getting down at Church gate Station past midnight with huge shopping bags after work. Tease a women and menfolks will pounce at you! Is Mumbai a changed city? I am shivering when I think about the hard reality. I am no longer in Mumbai but perhaps I need a reality check!!!
No Sir, the young woman was not scantily dressed, nor was she drunk or puffing a cigarette when she was dragged by five sick minds at Shakti mills at 6 pm in the center of the city? She was an independent woman doing her job. Now, the big question is what has changed since Nirbhaya was gang raped? Nothing, absolutely nothing! My heart bleeds as an Indian who may not be staying in the country right now! The main problem is the lack of effective laws to protect women and the sexist comments in parliament is such a shame. First, we need to set a precedent and I wonder whether such rapists should be lynched by the public! There is no time frame for action. There are thousands of daughters of India who are repeatedly raped yet nothing is being done. I wonder whether one day the public will take law in their own hands to punish the culprits. I fear for the security of my female friends! I often wonder whether we should go by the Saudi Arabian way by flogging the rapists and whether it’s high time to introduce chemical castration or release the pictures and names of rapists on public forums.
It’s an irony that we worship the female forms in temple and for that matter celebrate Raksha Bandhan and vow to protect our sisters. Yet, we don’t flinch in insulting the female form of Goddesses, mothers or sisters who carried us in the womb for nine months. How we humiliate our mother by committing rape?! If we cannot respect our women, let’s do away with celebrating Raksha Bandhan or for that matter, close all temples. Even dogs don’t behave like that! It’s even more revolting when one see Maharashtra Home Minister R R Patil offering police protection to women journalists working in isolated areas. Sorry! Sir! A journalist need to work in its own creative space and what are you hinting at? Women should stay in their homes and cannot be secure or should not step out of their homes. It’s such a callous statement. Has this unfortunate statement been made to cover your failure in protection women? For heaven sake, even if a women walk naked on the street, you have no right to touch her. Let’s teach our sons to respect women since an early age and as part of their education.

I was aghast on seeing the lawyer of one of the accused in Nirbhaya rape case saying that women wear provocative clothes and that Nirbhaya as well as the journo should not have hopped on the bus and ventured out, respectively. The sick lawyer, M L Sharma has the guts to hold everyone except the accused responsible. As panelist and Supreme Court lawyer, Karuna Nundy, rightly pointed out that to M L Sharma that his thoughts reek of conservatism and doesn’t befit a lawyer.
Mr M L Sharma, it’s disgusting for you to slam women for wearing provocative clothes and blaming them for rape. It’s so shocking that I wanted to slap you and it reflects on the attitudes of several males. In doing like that, you have shown disrespect and disrepute to your profession, the legal profession. I am amazed at your lack of professional ethics and conservative et sick mindset. It looks like by defending a rape accused, you have inherited a sick mind that reflects of the dark age. I really wish that action is being taken against you.
However, I also wish to show my displeasure in brandishing India as a rape country. It is true that rape is a matter of concern and women are the one who faces the humiliation of the body as the work of some sickos in society. It’s wrong to call it an entirely Indian phenomena as rape happens in US, the West and several other countries across the globe. By labeling India as a rape country, we diminish the effort undertaken by the protests against rape and showing disrespect to women who struggle everyday in fighting rape and groping in public places.
It’s been such a bad day and extremely revolting to see someone being raped while performing her duty. If we want to control rape, let’s introduce death penalty on the perpetrators in the bid to protect our women. Certainly, not the kind of news one wish to hear or watch on TV channels for a Friday. It’s revolting, outrageous and disgusting.

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