PROFESSOR ALI SUKHANVER
“That was no doubt the most dreadful night of my life,” a Swiss tourist in her late thirties was talking to the media in a tone filled with harassment and fear. She had been on a visit to India this March with her husband. “I had just changed my dress and was simply wearing a night gown when six wild stinking Indians thronged at the door of my room. They started beating my husband ruthlessly, threw him out of the room and within a few minutes I was a helpless prey and they were the hunters. I could never forget their wild brutality. The whole of my body was painfully bleeding when they left my room after raping me for the continuous three hours. That time I did not have even the strength and courage to go to the reception desk and ask for some help.” The Swiss lady told the media-men she was staying that night at a rest house near Datia TownIndia with her husband. The whole of the local administration was well aware of their being there and there were two security guards from police also to provide them security. “I believe those two guards were also among the culprits and they did this brutality to me in collaboration with the rest house staff.” According to the details published in Indian newspapers, after the incident the lady had to stay in a hospital for more than two weeks. I came by this story of brutality when I was searching for the details of sexual atrocities against low-caste women in India, but this incident of raping a foreign tourist popped up from somewhere during that search. It was really very shocking to know that it is not only the low-caste Hindu women who are leading a miserable life regarding sexual exploitation in India; the foreign women tourists are also facing the same problem. According to the Indian newspapers, most of the victims in such cases usually remain silent but sometimes a very few of them succeed in getting out of this insulting trouble; they defeat the attackers. One of the papers reported the incident of a British holidaymaker in the northern city of Agra who had to sacrifice one of her legs in her attempt of saving her honour from the clutches of two Indian villains. She simply jumped out of the hotel window to save her honor as two men entered her hotel room with the intent to molest her. The same thing happened to a South Korean student in January 2013. She was drugged and raped by the son of owner of the hotel where she was staying. Keeping in view all these incidents the British and Swiss governments recently issued instructions to women tourists to refrain from going to India due to growing risks of insecurity. Unfortunately the Indian officials never take such incidents serious. Most of the time they are found pleading that foreigners are victims of such acts of crime all over the world and that India was no exception.
The BBC News published a report few months back with the title, ‘Women’s Tales from Brutal India.’ The report concludes on the following words, “The mistreatment and abuse of women is a particular problem in Delhi and northern India. A stiflingly patriarchal social mindset, a brazen culture of political power, a general disdain for law, a largely insensitive police force and a rising population of rootless, lawless migrants are only some of the reasons. There must be many others. So if you are a woman – unless you are very rich and privileged – you are more likely to face indignity and humiliation here.”
Throughout the world, rape is nowhere regarded and dealt as a ‘routine matter’; everywhere this heinous act is considered and treated as a ‘grievous sin’ against humanity. The culprits involved in this wicked act are everywhere dealt as those who never deserve any forgiveness. It is true that since the very beginning of civilization and socialization on earth, rape has been a very powerful tool and effective weapon against enemies but it is also true that in every age and every period of history, the civilized and cultured strata of society has always denounced it as the worst disgrace of humanity. Even in the most developed and civilized countries like America, England, Australia, Russia, France, one finds hundreds of examples of women ,particularly the foreigners, molested every year but none of these countries ignores and overlooks or defends this menace on the ground that ‘ foreigners are victims of such acts of crime all over the world’. Even in the third world countries, the situation is not very much different but in India, things seem completely out of control. It is not only the sex-thirsty criminals who molest the chastity of foreigner women in India, but also the security personnel posted at different areas, particularly in the state of Indian Occupied Kashmir. Recently a report on the state of affairs in the Indian Occupied Kashmir said that the Indian military officers posted in Kashmir are so sex-thirsty that they do not spare even their fellow female officers but for most of them the local Kashmiri women are the ‘desired most’ target. Usually the families of the alleged Kashmiri Extremists are targeted for sexual harassment. But in spite of all these bitter realities the most painful fact is that the western media portrays India as a safe heaven for the tourists and Pakistan is painted as a land hell for the tourists.