Rape is the most inhuman form of sexual aggression, usually associates with brutal act of violence. Rape is an invasion of physical and bodily privacy of a woman that outrages the modesty and dignity of a woman. It is naked violation of a human right of a woman against her dignity and physical security. It is a serious blot on the very institution of womanhood itself. Rape is a manifestation of unnatural instinct of a man and his natural physical superiority over women.
A murderer destroys only the physical body of a person but a rapist in addition to that defiles the soul of a female. Justice Krishna Iyer has very rightly pointed out that ‘when a woman is ravished what is inflicted is not merely a physical injury but a deep sense of some deathless shame’. The rape is only crime, perhaps, where the victim, a helpless female instead of being sympathized is socially degraded with lifelong stigma attached to the character and dignity, for no fault of her.
Mass Rapes of women has always been a part of human history. During the wars, often, the winning army ravaged women in masses as a symbol of victory and is accepted as the inescapable right of the conqueror. If we turn back to all the pages of history, we find the record events of great battles between the kings, glorious wars waged by the Empires, victorious invasion of the conqueror’s march are all soaked with the tears of helpless women and bloodstains of victims of rape. Till the medieval period, rape was considered as a mere physical assault on woman and a rapist was not even publicly lookdown. With the advancement of civilization and rising consciousness among women and a constant struggle for equality, lead to accept publicly rape as a crime not only against the women but against women and society. Even in twentieth century it become common during the armed conflicts in areas of insurgency and also a weapon in antagonist campaigns as a mean of ethnic cleansing. The recent Bosnia conflict (1992-95) witnessed a large scale of mass rapes carried out on Bosnian Muslim women by Serbian militiamen. Likewise, a quite happening during the communal riotous mobs and caste conflicts, where in women are targeted at the hands of rival groups as an act of retaliation or to intimidate or to humiliate one another. In all the incidents the helpless women are victims like a grass between the bullfights. Such a plight of women due to the fact that men have glued for centuries as superior to women.
Rape is, nowadays an every day happening, rape can occur and anywhere, even in a family it can take in the form of martial rape. Rape can takes place, even in crowded places such as market areas, public parks, hotels, resorts, where the woman has been publicly picked up and raped there itself. It happens also in a refugee camps or protection homes. It can take place in centers of custody and care like police lockup or in prison, likewise a juvenile home or hospital. There is no exception even to the places of sanctity like school or temple. The victims ranges from little girls to grand mothers and age is not a criteria.. It is prevalent in every city, every town, and every village of India. It is happening in our neighbourhoods, the only difference is that we have turned a blind eye to the issue. Most of the cases of rape are not being reported in our country, may be for the absence of support from society as well as police. In villages while they were about to move to the police station they were prevented from doing so by the community fellows of the accused not to lodge a report with the police and instead insist to settle the matter by convening a panchayat of the village people. However, the reported cases have been observed an increase trend of rape cases during the years 2003-2007 as fallows.
According to National Crime Record Bureau Report, the total number of cases reported under Section 376 of I.P.C., are 15,847 in 2003, 18,233 in 2004, 18,359...