The case of the Delhi rape forced the plight of Indian women to the spotlight of the world’s media. People from all sides were quick to jump on it and give their opinions. From the religious leader Asaram Bapu declaring "the girl was also responsible ... she should have called the culprits ‘brothers’ and begged them to stop”, to the protestors clamouring for the death penalty for the rapists, the attack has polarised opinions on either sides. There have been criticisms of the failures of the Indian transport networks and bus service for not providing CCTV and having blacked out windows and criticisms of the failings of the police, which are all valid points. However when the statistics are analysed of the life faced by women in India, a more complete picture is drawn. ‘Women everywhere lost out with the polarisation of society into classes and the rise of the state. From being co-decision makers with men, they were thrust into positions of dependence and subordination’. When the percentage of literacy of men is 82.1% and women is 65.5%, When 90% of government jobs are held by men, when 487.37 million bank accounts in India are owned by men and only 153.18 million by women it is indicative of an unfair, unbalanced society where notions of equality are just that, a notion.
India is a vastly developing nation, it is a BRIC nation and will continue to play an increasingly large part in International Politics, and however it is clear that much more reform and education are needed all across the country. When parts of the country has a rape conviction ratio of just 1.5% , it is obvious that convicting the 6 men accused of the Delhi rape is only the start.
Frontline 25th January 2013
The Times of India December 21 2012