The recent Delhi gang rape has created a vehement uproar nationwide with the death of the victim in a Singapore hospital, accruing sympathy and concern for the crimes against women in India, but it also at the back drop teaches a need to understand the growth pattern of India as the second fastest growing economy across the globe with its monetarily fissured demography. Is it just enough to blame the government or the insensitive police actions in preventing such crimes or more to look beyond what is actually in front of us? The multi faceted economic status quo of a Capital city like Delhi makes it more vulnerable to fall as a prey for such crimes, where more people from different parts of the country pour in for, if not a better opportunity but a better living.
With such crimes in leaps and bounds, this will be one of the biggest challenges that our country will be facing as we are at a cross road of cultural transition towards a more westernized life style but only a very few part of the society undergoing it and the remaining as spectators in an alien world. For this reason, westernization cannot be blamed at all as it serves a catalyst in the economic boom, even though our growth rate is below six percent, which was once approximately a quarter more than the current rate.
The more the growth, costlier is the price paid to such crimes, proved by the positions held by the developed countries in the UN rape statistics, with a few exceptions like South Africa where there is a belief, not among all but most, that sex with a virgin is a cure for HIV. The number of reported rape cases in 2010 are nearly 85,000 and 16,500 in the US and UK respectively. The same year India reported around 22,500 cases and other developed countries reporting a considerable number of rape cases in four digits comparatively higher than most other countries. In the US it is surveyed that use of drugs especially alcohol is frequent in crimes against women, either by the victim or the perpetrator or both.
Most of the orthodox families of our country being the majority consider alcoholism as a sin and still believe, but the cultural transition gives way for the awakening of new problems, especially when Tehelka reported online the prejudices of Delhi/NCR cops who accuse women themselves responsible for the crimes against them, the fact the cops they interviewed are senior officials with decades of service in the police department, yet they belong to one of the many orthodox families and somewhere lower in the per capita income triangle. India is not the same as it was a decade ago and not at least the pre-face book era.
This is in turn a tough challenge for the Indian administration to tackle which forgoes the grass root level problems like literacy rate in the rural India, abridging the gap between the per capita incomes. Efforts of FDI, banking sector reforms and enhanced ASEAN cooperation can be welcomed to push up the growth rate, but the quest to answer the question whether the growth represents the whole nation can probably give an answer for these crimes. If the Delhi CM tends to believe Rs 600 is enough to sustain a normal life in the Capital city, then we are going nowhere.
Eventually the time span for solving these societal discrepancies are more, including reforms in the Police sector, but is mandate at some point in the future for consistent growth, it is better to start doing right away nevertheless fear of law could be one immediate measure to prevent such crimes. With all due respect to the Indian Judiciary, Capital punishment to the rarest of rare cases reflects our love for human life and its values, Life imprisonment can be a suitable measure than limited numbers of years being spent in prison for the crime against women. This doesn’t opine that rape cases cannot be ‘a rarest of rare’ crime.
Let us all come together for a better tomorrow.
Image Source: BBC