Hangings in India

An apt end to dark crime

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A high profile case of rape and murder in New Delhi came to a conclusion as the four men convicted of the gang rape and murder of a 23 year old student in 2012 were hanged on Friday morning. The four were handed a death sentence by a trial court in 2013. Of the six people who were initially arrested for the attack, one was found dead in jail in March 2013 whereas a 17 year old, treated under the juvenile law, was released in 2015 after serving three years. The victim had boarded a bus a little after 10pm along with her friend. The six offenders who were already onboard had committed the crime on the moving bus and then threw both out on a road.

The victim’s family obviously felt relieved after the decision and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted saying “justice has prevailed.”

What is shocking to note is that official records registered some 34 thousand cases of rape in 2018. Many more do not get reported for cultural reasons. While there were large scale celebrations in India after the executions people believe that such punishments have clearly failed to deter the culprits and cases of rape continue to be reported at an alarming rate. Real change will only come if and when women have financial independence that empowers them enough to take control of their own lives.

In Pakistan too we see a similar situation with regard to treatment of women. Let alone women we have an alarmingly high rate of child abuse in the country and the Zainab Alert Bill, recently passed by the parliament, is an effort to curb that horrific trend.

Women March, an annual event every March 8, has become controversial point between the educated girls and women who want complete control over their lives and the conservative men who see it as an affront to manhood. It is observed laws alone have not worked in the past, women must take control of their own lives and men and governments should help them do that.