Rape in India

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Rape in India
Brittany Jones

As a woman in the United States, rape is the ultimate nightmare, but to women in India it’s everyday life. Many rape victims’ stories just show how the police in India fail to respond adequately to crimes, especially crimes involving children or women.

On February 14th, three girls that were five, nine, and 11 were raped and murdered in the village of Lakhni, India. When the girl’s grandfather reported the girls missing to the police nothing was done about it. After two days, the girls were found dead in an old water well. The bodies were reported as “accidental” deaths. Nobody took any notice to the girl’s deaths until protestors blocked a national highway in uproar of the police inaction. When a television reporter from CNN arrived in the village on Thursday, the girl’s mother said: “The first day when we filed the complaint [about the girls disappearing], the police didn’t act on it. Had they looked for the girls, my girls would have been found. This is nothing but negligence.” The government offered the family about one million rupees (currency) in compensation for their losses. After the offer the mother said “No amount of money is going to bring my girls back. I appeal to the government to catch the culprits and hang them.”

This case is a prime example of the corruption and negligence of the justice system and the government as a whole in India. In the Indian culture women and children are not looked upon as equals to men. This relates to authoritarian personality, the police aren’t handling the situations as abruptly as they would if the case were related to men rather than women or children. Theodor Adnoro concluded that highly prejudice people have deep respect for authority and are submissive to authority figures, especially in matters of religion or sex (Adorno et al. 1950). They concluded that are more of like possessions or something to own instead of human beings. It was only after a mob of people shut down a highway that people actually started to care about what happened to those little girls. Another example of the negligence of the Indian government is when a young girl was brutally gang raped on a bus in Delhi, the government promised better policing and faster legal action to protect women inside their homes and outside in the public.

While lawmakers prepared to discuss a new law against sexual offense, they tried to keep the news of the recent rape and murder of three young girls on the down low. It was soon after that people took it into their own hands by rioting and blocking the national highway until they were promised a proper investigation.

For a rape crime, capital punishment (the death penalty) is the most extreme measure the state takes. However, it’s shown that the death penalty isn’t administered evenly. Geography wise it can change your sentence just by where you are when you kill someone. It also can affect the punishment you receive. Another death penalty dependent would be your social class. For instance, it’s very rare that someone of much wealth will be sentenced to death. They may rather receive time with just some fines that they can easily afford anyways. Gender is another big bias with the death penalty. It’s said to be unheard of for women to be sentenced to death, let alone actually be executed. Statistics show that women commit 9.6% of the murders, but they make up 1.8% of death row inmates (Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics 2009). On 3 February 2013, after the public made their voices heard about the brutal rape in Delhi, the Indian Government was forced to pass an ordinance which applied the death penalty in cases of rape that leads to death or leaves the victim in a "persistent vegetative state”. Although the death sentence is very rarely used in India they do believe in the death penalty because they feel it doesn’t involve torture, humiliation, or degrading of oneself. It’s usually carried out by...
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