Making women feel safe


The shocking incident of rape and murder of a veterinary doctor in Hyderabad speaks volumes of both the lack of stringent laws dealing with sexual assault and the unacceptable delay in getting justice for the victims (“Angry protesters lay siege to police station over vet murder,” Dec.1). The society looks askance at such women and goes to the extent of questioning the presence of the victim at odd hours outside. Not for a moment do we spare a thought for the safety of women in our country. The Father of the Nation — whose murderer is now getting glorified by an MP of the ruling party — said India will be truly free only when its women are able to walk freely on the country’s roads at night without fear. There is an urgent need for stricter laws, a time-frame to deal with such cases and the strictest punishment for rapists and murderers. Further, it is high time patriarchal perceptions undergo a change for the betterment of women in our nation.

G.B. Sivanandam,


There seems to be no end to the incidence of sexual violence of an unimaginable kind against women in our country. We must hang our heads in shame that India, with its rape crisis showing no signs of abating, has come to be regarded as the rape capital of the world. There is no crime more heinous and horrifying than rape. The ‘Hyderabad horror’ is the latest rape incident to cause public outrage. The manner in which the victim was raped and murdered in cold blood evoked chilling reminders of what the rapists-cum-murderers did to Nirbhaya in Delhi. This is too gruesome and gristly to bear thinking about. It is very sad that stringent laws against rape are not preventing the recurrence of the worst of all felonies.

Reports have it that the predators consumed alcohol, deflated the young woman’s two-wheeler, approached her in the guise of helping her, abruptly dragged her to a secluded spot, took turns to rape her, tried to pour alcohol into her mouth, smothered her, set her body ablaze at an underpass and dumped the charred the body under a culvert. Remember the same could happen to anyone’s mother, sister, wife or daughter; let us pause to think how it would be for us if it happens to one of our family members. We would be so heart-broken and overwhelmed with grief that we won’t be even able to hold a pen or type. It would be a betrayal of our common humanity if we develop mental resistance to acts of extreme inhumanity like the one in Hyderabad.

To say that public spaces are not safe for women is to state the obvious. It is a disturbing fact that at night danger lurks in the form of sexual predators in the streets. This is while women are free to be at any place and at any time alone or with their companions without the fear of being harmed. ‘Unlikely places’ or ‘unlikely hours’ or ‘being with a companion or escort’ cannot make women prey or give licence to the predators on the prowl to pounce on them. . Women in difficult family circumstances sometimes become more vulnerable to sexual assaults. Women must be respected as individuals in their own right with the inalienable right to dignity. They do not exist for monsters in the mask of men to satisfy their frustrated sexual desires, period!

G. David Milton

Maruthancode, Tamil Nadu


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Printable version | Dec 6, 2019 4:23:37 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/opinion/letters/making-women-feel-safe/article30132551.ece

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