Rape in India – Why it becomes a worldwide story

I knew that in India the number of rapes is very less but couldn’t do any global study on the same. I just came across this awesome article on focus on Indian rapes written by Sankrant Sanu (his blog is http://sankrant.org/) –

The article is reblogged below with permission from the author.


Rape is a terrible crime, a case where the victims are overwhelmingly women and the perpetrators overwhelmingly men. Every rape carries with it a personal story of trauma. To use statistics to speak about rape appears to dehumanize it into a number. Yet, when the mainstream news media is branding India into a “rape capital”, it is worth a pause. Maria Wirth, a German émigré to India wrote on how she found German TV disproportionately reporting a rape incident in far-away India, while a local rape was a small inside item. Similarly, a rape in a Cab in New Delhi made it all the way into the New York Times while an estimated 700 rapes on that day in the US merited no mention. This begs the question—is disproportionate coverage of rape in India justified? Or is it driven by an agenda?

First, a look at the numbers. If we go by reported rape statistics, India has one of the lowest rates of rape in the world, sensationalist coverage notwithstanding. Here are the top 15 countries of the world by rapes per 100,000 people. (Source: Nationmaster.com)

World Rape Statistics

We find that South Africa tops the chart in per capita rapes and Australia and the United States are in the top fifteen. (Note some of this data is from different years, based on available statistics. )If we just use the year 2010, the United States in the top 10 countries in the number of rapes. So is Sweden, right up there with Suriname.

Now, it is reasonable to question the figures based on reported rapes alone since there is considerable under-reporting of rapes. However, every country has problems with under-reporting. In Islamic countries under-reporting is a severe problem because of the difficulty of getting rape convictions in Islamic law. While the US is among the top countries in reported rape, still a majority (60%) of sexual assaults go unreported. Based on data collected by the US organization RAINN, factoring in unreported rapes, only 3% of rapists in the US would spend even one day in prison.

While low conviction rates and the difficulty of getting justice is given as one reason for low reporting of rapes in India, convictions rates are fairly low worldwide. The rate of rape conviction in the UK is only 6.5 percent in England and Wales, with a shocking low of 2.9% in Scotland. With such a low chance of conviction, women would be increasingly reluctant to go through the trauma of a rape trial and reporting rates would be depressed. India, by contrast, has a significantly higher rape conviction rate. While many countries, including UK and France, have shown a decline in rape conviction rate, India’s rate, despite a decline, is still several times higher than the UK at 26.4% with Delhi having a whopping 41.5% rape conviction rate, despite India’s notoriously inefficient justice system. A high chance of conviction would also have a positive affect on higher reporting. Thus the comparison of reported rape statistics cannot be dismissed out of hand, even though there are likely differences in reporting rates across countries. Given that caveat, let us see where India stand in reported rapes per capita in the table where the US is in the top 15.

Rate of rape conviction

India is near the bottom, at number 94, right next to Canada. (Total number of countries in this list, where statistics were available, was 119). Canada and the US are also a study in contrast. Though they are neighbors, and are superficially similar, their rape rates are a study in contrast. If countries were low in the list simply because of differences in reporting rate and not actual crimes, we would need to explain why the reporting rates between Canada and the US are so dramatically different. If not, we have to accept that the rank in this table, at least to some extent, reflects the actual rape rate. Along with India, Buddhist Japan and Hindu Nepal also find themselves near the bottom of the list.

Why then this huge preoccupation with rapes in India in Western media and the Indian media echo box. A clue is found on this website a veiloftearsmovie.com. This is a Christian evangelical site, releasing a major film on “A Veil of Tears,” the plight of Indian women. The movie starts by dramatic accounts of the Delhi gangrape and starts to list a litany of ills in the “persecution” of India women and how it was important to save them. The agenda? The website is clear. They are explicitly marketing the movie to Church groups to collect funds and their partner is “Gospel for Asia.”

“While the film, “Veil of Tears”, brings into focus the truth behind a dark reality existing in the world today, we are excited to highlight the hope being given to countless millions of women each day through the work and ministry of Gospel for Asia…

We invite you to take a moment to learn more about the mission of Gospel for Asia and how you can be a part of our movement to rescue generations of women from persecution and rejection and into the hope of Jesus Christ.”

The plight of Indian women is a marketing tool for the Global evangelical movement, that are shown explicitly using this to ask for money.

Veil of tears

Indian itself is the biggest target country in the Joshua Project, aimed at converting people between the 10-40 parallels. The missionary work is done on a war footing with detailed statistics about “unreached people,” every city and village with tribe and caste affiliations. India is the biggest and softest target. Most Islamic countries limit Christian missionaries, as does China. India is a unique place with the highest number of people to convert, the easiest access and the most naivete about the conversion war.

Can this influence news reporting? As I point out in my research into the Conversion War, we have to remember the size of the money involved. The one-year revenue of institutionalized Christianity is estimated to be $260 billion dollars (2001) figures. iAbout a fifth of this, $47 billion, are allocated to global mission work every year.

Missionary activity is also well organized and coordinated with deep reach into the media. There are coordinating groups for Christian and Christian-friendly media persons in India. The Shankracharya “murder” story was broken in one of these coordinated attacks. We, the heathen “target group” is, of course, blind to all these activities.

A $250 billion corporate force with the support of the most powerful countries on the planet can create a lot of influence. People in India are especially susceptible to regarding Christianity as a benign force and the Christian narrative dominates the media. The demonization of India for rapes is part of this propaganda war. US missionaries are the biggest funders of evangelical activities in India and are pushing the narrative that Christianization is necessary to “save” Indian women from the “oppressive native culture.” Unfortunately Indian media is complicit in this global campaign. This when the US has 16 times the rape rate of India. Even if we consider that the actual Indian rape rate is 4 times what is reported, and the US reports every rape (research indicates it barely reports half), women in the US would still be 4 times more likely to be raped that in India. Whose culture needs saving? Why is the rape rate in Christian US so high? These are questions worth exploring.

Meanwhile, we should shun the hyperbole created by Indian and international media on this issue that does little to help Indian women. Rather than hyped up culture-blame article with no solutions (other than the implicit one that women have to be liberated from this oppressive culture, ideally by White Christian knights in shining armor), it is better to take incremental non-sensationalist steps. This includes police sensitivity training on handling rape victims and reports and tools for women and men including education and safety tips to reduce rape. It is the Indian media and television channels that are part of the exploitation of this issue for sensationalist coverage. They have not been part of the solution. Rather the media’s own role in commoditization of women’s bodies for selling products, newspapers and channels should be under the scanner.

Source: World Christian Encyclopedia, 2nd Edition. Oxford University Press. 2001

***

Here is the permission from original author to reblog this article on this website..

Permission from Snkrant to reblog

The article is not mine. The entire credit of the article goes to Sankrant.

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11 comments

  1. So what if some men are falsely accused of rape?
    We feminists see it as a necessary process of gender education. Am all for chemical crastration of the rapist who are under the age of 21, if it stops rape. For rape, we should publicly shame the accused while providing privacy and cover to the victim. Only women are raped. Men are not raped. Also, at least for rape we should assume ‘guilty until proven innocent’. Capital punishment should be made mandatory for rapists over the age of 21. We need more strict laws, and harder unforgiving measures. Why is it hard to see through these pro-rape apologists?!

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    • Lol..accused is not guilty until proven. Anyone can accuse anybody of rape. Also who told you that women can’t rape men? Please know what is rape then comment. You want gender education for men simply on accusation and not for women who file false cases.

      Your comment only tells me that you may be another Tarun Tejpal or Khurshid Anwar who needs to be unmasked and given death penalty.

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      • I am a woman. And thus by corollary i am not a male.
        Only men like Tejpal and others can rape. Please unmask the rape apologists. Thank you.

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  2. Men who rape should not be given capital punishment.Only those people who take an innocent soul without a right should be given capital punishment and also capital punishment is only to be given in extreme cases.Also not advocating for capital punishment under any law automatically does not make a person an apologist on the behalf of criminals.Rather a woman who makes a false punishment of rape should be hanged publicly.And also along with them all the feminists who prompted that woman to put false cases.Mahatma Gandhi said to support a crime is worse than the criminal himself.Going by that,the women aka fembots should be publicly hanged even without asking their what their last wish is and then the woman who accuses a man of false case should be hanged next.If I say “You suck “…and if you happen to be a woman, then that does not automatically mean that I am a misogynist.I might have said that because “You actually suck”.You have used the same analogy here to describe the people who are condemning false cases and opposing death punishment for those had “Non consensual sex” and called them rape apologist.Disagreeing with how a particular law is framed automatically does not make you a supporter of crime.You think a human’s life so worthless that you are talking about killing them, castrating them as if its nothing but a simple matter..

    Going by these senseless and ruthless arguments and the tribal terminology of “Kill the rapist”,”Cut his genitals et etc” which shows that they believe that anything that troubles a a woman should be taken so seriously that other person loses all right to live ,all the woman who are accused of any crime irrespective of what the crime is should be assumed”Definitely Guilty until proven definitely innocent beyond doubt”Also in case they are found out to be guilty under any law,they should be given multiple times more punishment than that given to a man generally and then they should be exiled or marooned on a remote island.

    This madness needs to be stopped at any cost and the people who are propagating this madness must be micromanaged in their day to day lives and nay rule they break any regulation they violate even however much trivial it might be action should be taken and very sevre punishment must be given as these people speak as if they are God and they have right to decide who to kill and who not ,who to let live and who not.They act is if they are flawless.

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    • “they believe that anything that troubles a a woman should be taken so seriously that other person loses all right to live”

      Yes. How is this wrong? This is appropriate because women are superior. Without us there would be no life. Please think of your mother, sister and wife. Also, you still did not prove how woman may rape man???!!??

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      • There are many cases, some of them are on my blog as well. You said women can give birth, so? Can they do it without men? You are the reason why women hate feminism today. I am glad you exist so that you give reason for others to hate women. Women who think of themselves as superior may live a separate life outside this society, no one is stopping you

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      • How women can rape???
        — Google the topic and you’ll know 😛

        Without women there wold be no life?
        — Same is true about men.

        Think of mother, sister and wife?
        — Why you don’t think of your father, brother and husband?

        Silly feminist, what the author is trying to say here will only be understood by people with an open mind, i.e. non-feminists.

        Please be there so the world can see the real idiotic face of feminism. All the best and thanks! 🙂

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    • That only means you have not read or understood the article. This also means that you do not know that 75% of rape cases are false. This article shows clearly that inspite of India’s rape being low it makes worldwide headline. Have you ever tried to understand why a rape in US or Australia never makes headline here? Have you ever tried to understand if there is any society free of rape? Do you know that most rape cases filed in India are love affairs gone wrong. Please do not form any opinion based on emotion or without knowing facts. Do not create a situation where life of future generation is made hell because you were not aware about certain crimes.

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    • Ms. Kalpanaji
      Please see recent Mumbai high court decision regarding premarital sex. Woman knows what adult consensual sex means. Thus woman has agency. But if relationship doesn’t become realized then man is guilty only? Not only that, he also is a rapist?! What craziness is that? My brother and two cousins have been through this nonsense. Actually with them, my family has been falsely maligned too! Why?! How this is right, tell me. No, it’s not right. It’s total wrong. And false gender warriors, maybe you are one too, want to make us believe that woman has no fault? If she is so much for being chastity, virginity, honest woman etc. then don’t sleep before marriage, and don’t have live in stay together before marriage?! But no no no, a handful of woman acting false modern do this, and all society must pay price? Sorry. This is very wrong and stupid idea you have.

      Like

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