Prevention is better than cure–this applies to every aspect of life; finding the root cause of sexual violence and cutting it from there, we can develop a better generation tomorrow. So let’s continue looking into the other reasons why people behave like savages at times.
1. Acceptance of domestic violence
In India, domestic violence be it sexual violence or other is considered ok and deserved. Recently many reports on domestic violence were witnessed, and one of the leading cause stated was dowry. Back in 2010, India reported 8,391 dowry death marking as the highest in Indian history. Female dowry deaths estimate for 40 to 50 per cent of all female homicides listed annually in India, showing a stable trend over the period 1999 to 2016.
- Marital rape can’t be criminalized as it will cause a destabilisation of society; this is more of an orthodox view of the community related to marriage.
- If criminalized, there is a high possibility of fraud cases that may be filed against husbands.
A survey report of UNICEF back in 2012 found that 57 per cent of Indian boys and 53 per cent of girls between the ages of 15 and 19 believe wife-beating is justified.
So don’t you think we need to work on the mentality of people first?
2. A Lack of public safety
Women, in general, are unsafe outside their house; even the authorities have approved the same. Many streets in India are poorly lit, and there’s a lack of women’s toilets, Women and Child Development Ministry stated.
The judgemental mind of society thinks that women who drink, smoke or go to pubs or clubs are considered morally wrong, and they are more prone to being a rape victim.
3. Defaming the victim
When verbal harassment or groping do occur in public spaces, spectators often look the other way rather than intervene. The reason they give is they want to avoid conflict or any problems, and because they believe and blame the victim to some extent. People are not ready to stand for a girl even when harassment happens in public.
4. Encouraging rape victims to compromise
The weak mentality of Indian society that ‘what will happen if the outside world gets to know about this’ make the situation worse. Families of the victim and even authorities for that matter try to cover up the issue saying that this will affect her reputation and ask the victim to compromise. SHE is asked to either marry her attacker or take the money and drop the case. In either way, she is not provided with justice but asked to keep mum. Such cases mostly happen in villages; thus, these crimes never get reported.
5. Low status for women
This is one of the main drawbacks of Indian society; where boys are given more preference over the girls. For low-income families, the need to pay dowry can make daughters a burden for them. India has one of the lowest female-to-male population ratios (930 females per 1000 males) in the world due to sex-selective abortion and female infanticide.
Unless and until, the mindset of the society changes, we can’t hope for a better future for our girls. The change should start from society, as well the government and lawmakers should do their part in making strict rules and regulation for any sexual violence against women.