Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Meawhile, in Uttar Pradesh. May Trigger.

Violent rapes and murders have become a cause for concern:
A spate of exceptionally brutal rapes in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh has shocked India. Many of the victims were young girls.


"With the help of his friends, he dragged me to a secluded area and began to assault me with knives and axes. I was conscious for some time, but once they cut me on my head and neck, I fainted. When I became conscious, I was in hospital."
Sarika shows me her injuries - a fist-size wound on her scalp, her jaw which has been sewn together, her right hand which had to be re-attached, her right earlobe from where big chunks are missing, and long scars on her arms.
Shivam has been arrested, but the others are still free. One told the BBC he had been wrongly accused.
A terrified Sarika and her family have abandoned their home and land in Fatehpur district's Udrauli village to stay with relatives in another village nearly 45km (30 miles) away.

The article goes on to describe aspects of the crimes which help the perpetrators: Many people are poor and have to go out to the fields because they have no toilets at home, the attacked are usually low-caste Dalit women (the earlier "untouchables"), and the attackers are likely to be men of power and influence.

But all this must have been true in the past, too. So what has changed to make the recent spate of rapes, mutilations and killings even more vicious? Or is it that people are now paying more attention, that victims (or their relatives) now get a hearing?