Numb and Numbers

36,735. Every 4 minutes. A 43% increase.

That’s the number of rape cases reported in 2014. REPORTED, just reported. Not ‘actually occurred’, or even more less so, not ‘actually occurred and resolved’. Nope, just reported. It seems like a tiny number compared to India’s massive population of 1.2 billion, of which around 500 million are women. So what’s all the fuss about? That’s less than 1% of the entire female population! Rape happens in every country, why is it being glorified here if the statistics are showing percentages less than even Rahul Gandhi’s IQ? Because, reported. It’s horrifyingly cruel that a woman’s torment and agony doesn’t end after she’s been raped. What does she do after? Where can she go and speak her mind without being judged, pointed fingers at, ridiculed, and worst of all, blamed? It’s horrifyingly cruel that even before reporting a crime a woman has to contemplate beyond belief whether she should go ahead with it and hope that the tables don’t turn on her instead.

That’s the frequency of when a woman gets raped in India, according to 2014 polls. Every 4 minutes. Who even researches these statistics? I’m befuddled, bewildered, no, truly crazed with confusion. Why is it more important to know that a woman will get raped every 240 seconds rather than actually DO something about it. Why does it seem like ‘rape statistics in India’ has become a game, a trend, a race to become one of Google’s top searched. Why are we sitting still every 4 minutes, and only reviving every 4 months when something big hits the news.

And that, 43%, that’s the increase in reported cases of rape after 2012. Yes, that’s good, that’s much better actually. But oh boy, 2012.

  1. 6 men.

December. Delhi. A horrific bus ride. A nation angered. She was 23, just 23. People rose up to shout and fight; enough was enough, immediate action needed to be taken. However, the wax from the candles hadn’t even dried fully in front of India Gate before it happened again; within 2 days, reports came of a 5 year old girl raped by her uncle. 5 YEARS OLD. I can’t even begin to fathom the twisted ways in which the mind of a child rapist works. So yes, India was angry, shell shocked, and vengeful. Those 6 men needed to be prosecuted asap. Correct me if I’m wrong, but the judicial happenings after December 2012 were probably the fastest in the history of any rape case in India. It’s amazing what global media coverage, nationwide scrutiny and uproar can do to India’s snail-paced justice system, isn’t it. Those 6 men were tried and found guilty, after astonishingly narrow minded and downright stupid comments made by their lawyers of course. One of the men wasn’t even a full grown man at all. He was 17. That’s it, just 17. What were you even doing at 17; studying for a lame physics test the next day, dreaming about Neha who sits behind you in class, trying to get rid of a pimple? Well this bad egg had a very different day. He, of course, got tried by the juvenile court. Punishment? 3 years. He’s out now, and Nirbhaya is still gone. Yup, that seems like a fair punishment. We thought things would change after Nirbhaya, and granted, in many ways good changes have occurred. But in many ways things have gotten worse.

19 years old. About 1.5 meters.

The law student in Kerala was 19 years old. Sent a chill down everyones spine when they heard about it a few weeks ago. A nasty reminder of the cold hard truth that not much had changed in the past 3 years.

About 1.5 meters is the average length of human intestines. About 1.5 meters of flesh and tissue was ripped out from her in the attack. Phew, that was a nasty line to type, my hands were trembling. This is beyond atrocious; gravely gruesome. So what do we do now, what is the government doing?? What about the police, the courts? Is there even any room left for justice in all the politics?

1 for every 1000.

1 cop for every 1000 people, that’s the state of our police force, people! A police force that has to help and protect 1.2 billion people. A police force which is astonishingly understaffed and woefully underpaid. And if this wasn’t hopeless enough, a large chunk of this already minuscule number goes into protecting our ever so dear VIP politicians. So obviously, there is a serious dearth of policemen AND policewomen in our country. So obviously, there should be a higher number of recruits and proper training given to the existing force. Obviously. But it doesn’t seem to be happening. Huh, guess it’s not so obvious after all. Speaking of inadequacy, the number of judges, the number of courts, the number of fast track courts for rape. Again again again, if only someone comes up with the bright idea of increasing their number to cater to the MASSIVE Indian population.

3cm. 20cm. Section 375.

If that’s how much of the penis was inserted into the vagina, then I’m sorry, but it’s not considered rape. WHAT. WAIT NO, WHAT??

That’s it? Just 20 cm? Well she was wearing a miniskirt, she was bound to get raped. *TOO ANGRY TO TYPE/RANT/BREATHE AT THIS POINT*.

Section 375 of the IPC defines rape. You probably don’t want to hear this one. A man is said to commit rape who has sexual intercourse with a woman against her will, without consent yada yada yada and a whole bunch of other terms and clauses. See, it really depends on the way a country defines rape. The archaic laws in India make it seem so easy to get away with it,with guilty men crawling and worming their way out of the loopholes. What’s even more shocking is that marital rape isn’t even considered rape in India. If he has sexual intercourse with his wife who’s above 15 years, then even if he’s abusing her or acting out violently, it won’t be considered rape, he won’t get punished, and once again justice will NOT prevail.

10 days.

That’s how long Durga Puja lasts. That’s how many days we celebrate and worship the goddess durga. GODDESS. WORSHIP. CELEBRATE. I feel like these words should be emblazoned across the country, for all the hypocrites to see. Remind them of the very reason they go out and buy new clothes, and buy mithai for navratra. 10 whole days.

How many more numbers though? How many more numbers do we need before we can completely annihilate this inhuman behaviour? How many more statistics do we need to yell out on newshour debates and at politicians? How many more daughters, sisters, mothers, aunts, children, how many more? How many more Nirbhayas?

How many more numbers?

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