3/3/2015 4:45:56 PM
|written By : Staff Reporter|
This Sunday, British broadcaster BBC Four will be airing a documentary on Mukesh Singh, one of the convicted men in the gruesome Delhi gang rape-cum-murder which shook the world in December 2012. While admitting to the crime, Singh’s views on women’s conduct and carriage reveal a deeply regressive and pervasive mindset.
In a country where the Goddess Mother is revered through the worship of female goddesses such as Ma Durga and Kali, there is the other side of midnight. Such hypocritical attitude towards women has outraged and angered Indians all over the world.
Sparsh Rastogi a 22-year-old Indian student in Canada said, “This is a systemic issue, I mean historically men in India have been taught that women are inferior, and that its their fault if disgusting things like assault and rape occur. Add that to a lack of education, a lack of exposure to different types of people and just a basic disregard for other human beings (let’s face it in India there is very little value of life) and you get a toxic combination of people like this guy. I feel sad for normal Indian men like myself who don't even remotely feel this way, it makes us look bad and makes the country look bad. How can India be a world superpower when it can't even promote equality?”
“This is just a lame excuse for the crime.. .Well brought-up, educated, rich, poor, whatever it may be, criminals will be criminals,” said Arjun Ravi, an India Se reader.
Voicing her outrage, Vidhya Nair, a well-travelled Singaporean-Indian offers a solution. “I think something radical needs to happen in India. Women there need to do an all out boycott of Indian men. No marriage, no sex. Cut them off till they prove their worth. If it's done collectively, they will have no choice,” said the former aviation industry executive who recently completed her MBA from Manchester University.
“Firstly I can’t believe there are lawyers willing to defend such people and secondly they share such similar views of believing it’s the girl’s fault who is out at after 8:30 pm. There would be no progression this way,” says Kairavi.
Sharini Jagtiani said, “Sustained patriarchy, collapse of legal institutions and fear of societal humiliation of being a victim is allowing many cases like these to go unreported.”
K M Venugopalan, a retired governement officer, sums it up, “The 'rape culture' in India seems to be a deadly cocktail of many things. Hollow claims of exceptional cultural/moral superiority in practice mean collectively blaming women for each sexual abuse and violence suffered by them in the real world. Most typically, it is also a combination of xenophobia, misogyny, stalking, moral surveillance ostensibly to defend 'culture', gang-raping to 'punish', and so on.”
But psychologists and behavioural scientists might have a better idea about the root cause of this social ill that inflicts Indian and South Asian societies. They point to the home. “It begins in the cradle. Indian boys tend to grow up with a sense of entitlement, of being allowed to exercise their maleness and its obviously something that is absorbed by them in the culture at home,” said Malini Rao who runs her own consultancy in Bombay. “It’s not just in the village or among the poor. This is ingrained even among middle-class Indians, no matter what their educational or social status.”