Vigil Human Rights Diary - October 2011

India is home of  unspeakable crimes against women

Three African women have won the Nobel peace prize this year for raising effective protest voice against the discrimination and oppression of their gender in highly hostile and conservative surroundings.  Who is doing the same in our country which was recently bracketed by the United Nations as the top two nations recording majority of “117 million missing girls” in Asia?

Amid empty talk of empowerment of women’ – rapes have become a routine affair with girl-children or teenagers being regularly targeted in every city, town or rural area.  It is as if wolves have been set on the second-sex-feticide to outright killing.

A steep decline in the quality of governance, proportionate rise in public inertia and self-centered attitude or simple indifference of the public has made matters worse for women, particularly from the Dalit segment which remains most vulnerable against muscle, money and political powers of the intermediate caste with dominant feudal tendencies.

If on the one hand it is uninterrupted ‘honour killing’ against girls seeking to assert their independence in their personal lives, on the other it is the wanton outrage of modesty with no counter-action from the state or the society at large.  Instances of poor and lower-caste women resisting rape and then disfigured with their nose, hands or other body parts chopped are not few and far between – some are reported but a large majority go unnoticed.  In some states, ministers are themselves accused of rape.

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