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A Second Rape
January 21, 2013 COMMENT comment
     
A Second Rape
By Priyanka Chakrabarti
 
 
Ours is a schizophrenic society – women are worshipped as goddesses on one hand and murdered in the womb on the other. We have women in positions of great political power and yet 74 per cent of married Indian women admit to facing some sort of physical, emotional or sexual violence in their lives. In this clime, when eminent politicians trash out bizarre concepts on public forums, the crime of rape becomes an insignificant social satire. No law can put an end to this atrocious felony without simultaneous social reform – starting with our political leaders.
 
The recent spate of rapes in Haryana was followed by unacceptable comments by the state's elite. The Khap Panchayat concluded that if the minimum marriageable age (18 for girls and 21 for boys) was lowered to 15 or 16, then single boys wouldn't be compelled to take out the frustration of their racing hormones on girls. They also came up with a brand new theory that Chinese food, especially chowmein, causes hormonal imbalance leading to rapes! Here are a few more dangerous bytes. The Khap Panchayat in Haryana
recently concluded that chowmein was responsible for the growing number of rapes in the state.
 
Om Prakash Chautala, former Chief Minister of Haryana, recently blurted out a very strange suggestion – that the marriageable age for girls should be condensed to 15 in order to curtail episodes of rape
 
Disappointingly, woman icon Kiran Bedi a few days ago made a mockery of herself by pointing out that the media should focus on corruption cases rather than highlighting petty rape cases.
 
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee took irrational policies to a new level by announcing compensations for rape victims – the amount of money would depend on the amount of damage she suffered (Rs 30,000 for minors, Rs 20,000 for adult victims, and Rs 2 lakh if the victim died during assault). She further said that rapes happen because the two genders are coming on the same platform and intermingling like never before in an open market with 'open options'.
 
Karnataka's Women and Child Welfare Minister CC Patil blatantly held women responsible for rapes and molestations, blaming their dressing sense. He furthermore said that women should refrain from wearing provocative clothes and should monitor the percentage of 'skin show'.
 
At a press conference, Dharamvir Goyat, Haryana Congress leader, said that 90 per cent rape cases are consensual.

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