Reported cases of rape are on the rise in India, one of South Asian largest countries. Since last year, there are several incidences where women were ganged raped in trains, on streets and secluded places. Recently, a high profile case was reported in August, where a famous priest was arrested for rape.
Prominent among these cases is the report from the New York Times, in August 23, 2013 where a 22-year-old photojournalist working for an English media was ganged raped by five men, while on field work with a male colleague.
The rape victim, whose name was not reported, with her colleague, went to an abandoned and deserted textile factory compound, around 6 p.m. local time. While taking pictures of the area, to report the rising trend in Mumbai, where factory workers are made residential tenants in places where they once work, the two of them were accosted by some men.
Major global newswire reported or transmitted the story. CNN also televised how the photojournalist was surrounded by the men. She was protesting and they gave her no access to leave the scene. While the hullaballoo was still ongoing, electric power was cut off and the protesting men, had the opportunity to gang rape the reporter, while, her colleague was tied and beaten.
One of the five men was arrested some days later, and he admitted that he was in the compound when the incidence took place. Indian police later arrested more of the suspected culprits.
Protests from the women’s folk and activists are mounting over some of these high-profiled rape cases.
After the December, 2012 attack in New Delhi, in which a physiotherapy student was gang-raped and beaten to death and her male friend severely beaten, tens of thousands protested for weeks, demanding a safer environment for women and heavier penalties for sexual assault. The Indian government in March, this year may have been forced by the demonstrations to revise its old laws on sexual assault. Its lawmakers decided to impose stiffer punishments for violence against women; including pestering and voyeurism, which were termed as criminal offenses.
The incidence has further highlighted that women walking alone on the streets of Mumbai are prone to fall victim to rapists. This sad happening is fast becoming a negative culture; if uncontrolled would make tourists and foreigners be frightened and the revenue to Indian government from tourism is likely to plunge.
I chose this story because of its significance in human rights and the role of protecting women in society. Rape is globally condemned; sometimes it attracts death sentences in some countries. If the frequency in which rape cases are carried out in the country is not speedily addressed by authorities in India then it may have a long term spill-effect even into the national economy of the country.
The rising trend of rape against women in this South Asian country is an issue that should interest any global foundations in the continent. Global foundations all over the world seek for peace, respect to human dignity and prosperity. The increasing rape incidences reported in India has sparked several protests that have led to the dead of some people and destruction of public facilities; which will further affect the economy of the country.
Bagri, Neha Thirani (2013). ‘Photojournalist Raped in Mumbai’, August 23.
http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/08/23/photojournalist-raped-in-mumbai/ (Retrieved, 08-09-13).
Bagri, Neha Thirani (2013). ‘Mumbai Police Arrest Suspect in Gang Rape’, August 23.
http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/08/23/mumbai-police-arrest-suspect-in-rape-of-photojournalist/ (Retrieved, 08-09-13).
Mallika, Kapur (2013). ‘3 suspects arrested in gang rape of female photographer in Mumbai’, August 25. http://edition.cnn.com/2013/08/24/world/asia/india-gang-rape-arrest/index.html?iref=allsearch (Retrieved, 08-09-13).
Niharika, Mandhana and Anjani, Trivedi (2012). ‘Indians Outraged Over Rape on Moving Bus in New Delhi’, December 18.
http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/18/outrage-in-delhi-after-latest-gang-rape-case/ (Retrieved, 08-09-13).
Raina, Pamposh (2013). ‘Why Female Journalists in India Still Can’t Have It All’, September,02. http://india.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/09/02/why-women-journalists-in-india-still-cant-have-it-all/ (Retrieved, 08-09-13).