It is very hard to imagine 5 apparently innocent looking youngsters, belonging to middle class families, with no previous criminal record, indulging in such a barbaric act and also, apparently filming the gory episode on their mobile phones. It is also equally unimaginable how after committing such a heinous crime all of them went back to their homes (from where they were subsequently arrested), mingled with their mothers and sisters, and carried on with their daily lives as if nothing had happened! Has the youth of Doon become so desensitized to violence?
The families of these five friends also need to be studied. Usually there is a lack of respect for women in such families and the children grow up seeing their mothers and sisters being treated more as objects than living beings. The blatant defence of these boys by their fathers outside the court, where they were produced, and finger pointing at the victim instead gives an insight into their mindset.
While walking with “friends” in secluded spots is certainly not a wise thing to do, it does not justify or lessen the gravity of the crime. No one has the right to even rape a prostitute. Dehra Dun is a city of young people and youngsters need space for themselves. While no one can expect the police to patrol all areas of Doon 24hrs a day, it is their image which should be enough to deter criminals. Unfortunately the image of police in Doon is very lax. Youngsters can be seen speeding around the town without helmets without ever being checked. Even if the policemen on duty tell them to stop, they simply speed away laughing. Even members of the fairer sex do not hesitate to abuse policemen on duty when checked. Leading by example are the politicians of our State who never hesitate to do the same when checked for traffic violations.
There is a sense of outrage among Doonites that such a thing can happen in our city. One reads about such incidents in places like Noida & Delhi, but Dehra Dun is still a small city with people knowing each other and such violent crimes are relatively unheard of. The arrest of most of the accused within a few hours by Dehra Dun Police is highly commendable. Given the heinous nature of this crime a fast track court should be set up to speedily bring the culprits to justice. It also reignites the debate whether death penalty should be given to rapists. Sending such people to jail for a couple of years, where they are fed and looked after by tax payers money just does not seem right.
Shockingly, the leaders of our State have not spoken a word about it publicly. Is the gang rape of a 16yr old girl in the Capital of our State a routine incident, too small to merit their attention? The State Women’s Commission has also been looking the other way. If this is not crime against women, then what is? While the physical scars of being raped do go away with time, the mental trauma may haunt the victim lifelong. Are we all, as a part of Society, not accountable for what has happened to this girl? Should we not speak up?
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