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Jyoti to Jisha: No justice for India’s daughters

rape3I know, you’ve read enough already! You probably shook your head when you saw the headline. Another rape? God, what is this country coming to? Why don’t they do something about it? The shock turns into anger and then the anger fades into resignation. With the shadow of fear lurking close by, we go back to our daily lives and justice mostly goes back to sleep.

Another day, another victim. The news anchor on the television is recounting the brutal horrors. Headlines scream to catch our attention. The shadow of fear inches a little closer. We become more vigilant, some even impose curfews on their daughters, reprimand them for dressing inappropriately. Some go out to protest, they are desperate to make their voice heard and are determined that justice will help drive away the shadow of fear. It wears them down while justice continues to sleep.

Jyoti Singh’s case in December 2012 shook the nation and thousands came out to protest and demand change. It led to some results. But the problem won’t disappear. Unless, each one of us, takes a close look at our surroundings. We need to repeatedly ask ourselves: Why is this happening?

Rape does not happen because a woman was scantily-dressed or because she was out late at night. Rape is a crime of power. Rape happens in societies where women are daily targets of violence. So we need to ask ourselves some very uncomfortable questions: Where is this violence coming from and why? How can I stop this violence and brutality? What values can I give my sons and daughters? I don’t have to impose curfews on my daughter. I have to teach my son to respect women. It is easier said than done.

We have to promise ourselves that we won’t go numb. We won’t let go of our anger. We won’t resign. We need to channel our anger constructively. Our anger gives us the strength to fight century old norms and traditions. The names of Jyoti and Jisha maybe forgotten in a few years and the world will have moved on, but we need to hold on to our anger to remind ourselves of what happened and make sure that we do everything in our power so it doesn’t happen again.

Author: Roma Rajpal-Weiß

Editor: Marjory Linardy

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Date

28.05.2016 | 13:37

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