Many people have said, your body is your temple. Many people have also said that your consent is important in everything, that every human being has their own space.
But even then, woman are raped across the globe ruthlessly. While an approximate, 20,000-25,000 rape cases are registered in India every year, there are many others that stay hidden simply because the woman does not have the strength to go through the interrogation and cross-examination by the police and the lawyers.
National Crime Records Bureau released data in 2015 that stated that in 95% cases of rape, the offender knew the victim.
Today as the nation burns with the rape cases of Unnao & Kathua, have we wondered what it is like for a woman (if she is left alive) to live after being raped?
1. “Ye wahi hai na, jiska kissa news me aya hai?”
People will pinpoint. There are those who will also say that ‘she is from the same village as mine’. Getting out on the road and living a normal life becomes extremely painful for the woman. Suddenly, she isn’t ‘Sita, Geeta or Reshma’, she is a ‘rape victim’.
2. “Shaadi karva do iski usi ke saath, kaun karega shaadi warna?”
There are several cases where the rape offender and rape victim have been asked to get married. Suddenly, her ‘rape’ becomes her fault and she is asked to get married to the offender for her family’s ‘dignity’. As if marriage legalizes rape! Imagine what she goes through. She is asked to spend the rest of her life with a man who took her life – and used her as an object.
3. “Batao, kaha kaha chua usne tumhe?”
Social stigma isn’t the only challenge. The next challenge is the defense lawyers and police officers who character assassinate her. Some take joy in hearing the details of a rape like it was some kind of porn! While some police officers may empathize, the whole ordeal of repeatedly visiting courts and police stations kills her from within. Not to mention the endless wait for justice and threats.
4. “Mu mat kholna apna! Warna…”
Many rape survivors are blackmailed so they do not report to the police. She has to suffer in silence if she wants the safety of her loved ones. And it is not just rape offenders who ask her to be silent. Her own family, to save face, will ask her to shut her mouth. Because again, they think that a woman is born to get married! Many are scared and scarred for life. Suffering in silence is the worst of it all.
5. “Ghar me baith. Bahar niklegi hi nahi to koi chuega nahi…”
Resuming her routine becomes a challenge. Leaving the safety of her home (sometimes homes are also not safe), to resume her job or education is suddenly barred. How will she cope with the trauma if you confine her to four walls? Isolation will only worsen her state of mind.
A rape survivor doesn’t deserve all this. She deserves respect and normalcy. She needs counseling and motivation. It is never her fault.
Preview Photo: thehealthsite.com