Our habits die hard, no matter what we do to change them. May be there are many habits that we want to change but for me the utmost important thing to change in Indians is to stop giving expert opinion about crime and law without any knowledge about the long term implications. One such issue happened recently with HangTheRapist campaign. Campaigners said when a rape is proven the rapist need to be hanged without understanding that not all rapes are like Nirbhaya. They also don’t understand that Nirbhaya case was a combination of many crimes not only rape and hence demanding death penalty because of cases like Nirbhaya exists is not right.
The Hindu has recently come up with a series of three articles to open the eyes of such people to show the different types of rape cases and their conviction mechanism. Even though they have taken only cases filed in Delhi as example but that is how rape cases are filed all over the country.
Image and news link courtesy – The Hindu
In the first article of this series The Hindu showed how they have done the study. It is important to note what they said – “Of the cases fully tried, over 40% dealt with consensual sex, usually involving the elopement of a young couple and the girl’s parents subsequently charging the boy with rape. Another 25% dealt with “breach of promise to marry. Of the 162 remaining cases, men preying on young children in slums were the most common type of offence”.
Very important to note here is that sex on the premise of marriage is also rape as per definition. Hence all the young couples who elope for various reasons and then somehow they don’t get married all of them become vulnerable to be accused in rape. When we demand death penalty for rapists we ask for death penalty for all these boys who have just made love and nothing else because as per legal definition all these are rape cases (marriage can be stopped for many reasons including social pressure from girl’s side).
This article says that – “In ten of these cases, the court agrees that the relationship was consensual and that the couple got ‘married’ but convicts the boy anyway as the girl was a minor.” – There is a high possibility that the boy would not know the age of the girl before making love. Many a times girl herself will hide her true age. If we demand death penalty for rapists even if they are juveniles then we are talking about hanging all these young boys because rape is proven.
Lawyer and activist Seema Mishra has to say – “If the girl is not sent to a shelter once she is picked up by the police, and instead sent home, you can be sure they will brainwash her and she will change her statement in court,” – So initially she may say she went with the boy on her will but under pressure from her parents she may change her statement and say she was forced into elopement. And then the boy will surely be convicted for rape. Per the HangTheRapist campaigners all these boys need to be hanged because rape is proven.
Since sex on premise of marriage cases being termed as rape per our law. Obviously Hang The Rapists campaigners don’t know this and they end up asking for death penalty for all these boys simply because the marriage might have been denied.
India needs to understand that demanding extreme punishment for a crime without understanding the finer nuances of the crime is dangerous. When the punishment becomes severe the related criminal procedures become stringent, too. Like in case of Nirbhaya Act there are many lines of defence taken away from the accused and now any man can be punished on simple complaint. This is what happened due to sustained HangTheRapist campaign by different social groups and people including bloggers who do not understand any of these nuances.
If this bad habit of giving expert opinion without any detailed knowledge of the crime is not stopped then our future generation will suffer extreme and dangerous life. We the crime researchers of India know these nuances and hence we prohibit everyone creating such hatred in the society. But in turn feminists and bloggers abuse us in the most filthy language. They don’t understand that they are in fact jeopardizing their own future and putting their own sons to life threat. It is thus important to immediately stop this bad habit to save our future generation from extreme legal terrorism.