We make a lot of hue and cry every time a rape is reported but most often, the crime committed i.e the 'rape' is just the symptom of the malaise that is engulfing our society and not the malaise itself. As I see it, the primary reasons for this ill treatment are as follows:-
2. Poor depiction of women on TV
3. Depiction of women as commodities in recent films
5. Last but not the least, Internet
1. Social customs/etiquette at home. One of the important reasons for this malaise is the typification of Women. A Woman is expected to behave in a particular manner and a Man (even a boy) is expected to behave in a particular manner. In a typical household even young boys have more importance than elder women. Naturally, the boys grow with an air of importance over women. It is surprising that in majority of occassions, it is the mothers who spoon feed this attitude to their children by virtue of their own behaviour.
They therefore cannot tolerate women who demand an equal footing or treat them on their own terms. There is a burning desire in them to teach such women (something that is also depicted in many bolly films i.e the hero teaching a lesson to the heroine).
2. Poor depiction of Women on TV. The next place where a young boy is exposed to this sort of culture is the TV medium. It is quite surprising that the even children's TV shows produced in India have only a boy as the super hero (Chota Bheem, Krish etc) with the girl just being his friend. Even though this can brushed off as insignificant, all saas-bahu serials which may have made enormous amount of money to a particular lady may have immensely harmed the image of women portraying them as evil, conniving & wicked. There are young boys growing up seeing such portrayals which is bound to impress their young minds.
In addition, the sex scenes are slowly creeping into the TV. I can keep my kids from going to an 'A' rated film in the theatre but how do i stop them from accidentally watching sex scenes which are part of a serial on TV? Even in the case of music channels, with top heroines dancing in skimpy clothes to extremely hummable tones, drawing the distinction between sex song and music song is becoming difficult.
3. Depiction of Women as commodities in recent films - It was reported earlier that Bollywood expressed solidarity with the Nirbhaya gang rape victim by carrying out a candle light march. A few bollywood celebrities have also gone public and expressed their anguish and horror at that and the present gang rape.
THIS IS A BIG JOKE!!! Because, most of the eve teasing of women is propagated by our main stream heroes (including bollywood and across India) in the garb of pursuing a woman. They relentlessly pursue a girl on screen despite her saying 'NO', then sing songs, eve tease her n her friends, sometimes even slap her (probably to bring her to mother earth) to make her fall in love with them.
Now the heroes paid in crores, may be wise enough to understand that such actions are meant only for the celluloid but the common man on the street is unable to understand or appreciate such niceties and he only thinks - if amir khan, salman khan, govinda, chiranjeevi or even amitabh bachan (though on screen only) could do it, even i can do it. the unfortunate part is that they try to do it in real life.
seriously, do we know what is the status of their cases now?
5. Internet. The biggest culprit in current times!!! Can u imagine the kind of sites/blogs/threads that are there!!! and all are free!!! Some may make you hold your head in disbelief but some may make you puke (make your mom r!@#$). With so much free video, audio and text material available catering to every kind of fantasy one can think of (including rape) - how do we stop young minds from being corrupted. A classic example - there is one foreign site which depicts foreign women being molested on board trains and buses (in foreign countries). But to the experienced eye, one can make out that the molestation is staged and that it is actually a sex film. But the ordinary people may feel that they can similarly molest women in india and to prove the point - about last week i came across an indian link depicting "molesting of an indian woman on bus"!! The situation may be sad but true.
Pornography on internet is assuming dangerous proportions and is slowly destroying the moral fabric of the society. One would re-collect that even the Nirbhaya rapists also confessed that they saw some blue films on the net/mobile before committing the crime. That is the effect of these movies on young hot blooded guys.
But, how do we tackle this particular menace. There is no easy answer. Britian is probably the first country to ban porn (at least making it out of reach for children) recently. Still, the devil is in the detail and the availability of technology to enforce the ban would decide how successful the ban is!!!
To counter all the factors listed above and eradicate this malaise, total involvement by all affected parties i.e Parents at home, teachers in school, Govt in controlling all the media, CBSE/NCERT to decide the text books (Imagine, my daughter was asked to make a chart of all cricketers but never asked about our freedom fighters!!!!) etc. This will ensure that the future generations of children leave the current archaic thoughts on women and sex behind!!
After all, it is the mind set like one Delhi police commissioner said - "They never heard of rape in the North east!!!" So, a cultural change can do it!!
Time - as we all understand is the most precious commodity in today's world but we must somehow extract that 'Time' from our busy schedules for this particular task - to make our neighbourhood a safer place for our mothers, sisters and daughters!!!