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Have our lawmakers learnt anything after Nirbhaya?

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I'm an Army wife, balancing my life as a homemaker and an IT freelancer. One has been a procrastinator of sorts and it has taken me a while to overcome my writo-phobia. I hope to be an author someday. I am a foodie who loves to cook and a travel planner who loves to travel.

Yesterday a taxi driver raped and assaulted a mentally challenged woman in the NCR, and last week we had the fourth acid attacks on a gang rape victim. Our society has monsters and these monsters need to be tamed. But how? So many things tried but none worked out. I have an unconstitutional solution. Will you listen?

At the outset I will confess that I find my motion sickening and obnoxious, but it is better to be nauseating than raped. Please pardon me for suggesting this as a solution and certainly I deserve the volley you of punches. However, even if a disgusting idea works, it may be worth a try.

Nirbhaya’s catastrophe marked the Tiananmen for India and back then it appeared to be the kairotic moment of truth when the country had decided to go Rape Free. With rapid agility and dexterity, in just 29 days, Verma Committee proposed amendments to the Criminal Law for an expeditious indictment and severe punishments for the culprits. Yet up until now, nothing much seems to have changed because strong laws ain’t doing much. National Crime Records Bureau released the data and stats for 2015 in Nov 2016, by the way, it’s the latest. That year recorded some 34,651 rapes and 4,437 attempted rapes with just 29.4% and 19.8% conviction rate respectively. In all about 3.27 crore crimes against 58.75 crore women in India in barely 365 days.

Depressed? Don’t be. We are not the worst place when it comes to atrocities against the softer sex. A United Nations survey reported that Sweden, UK, Botswana & Australia had the highest reported rates of sexual violence against the women and America had a very high rate of rapes. Par saanoo kee! I want to mop-up my neighborhood because I don’t feel safe and secure going out even in a Burqa, leave alone my hot pants.

The Monsters
Frankly, we do not understand the real cause of this menace, which is why both prosecution and persecution have not been able to bring about any meaningful change. I think the problem lies in the fact that we are asking the most sexually active and populated nation to be not lusty for sex, and overnight reduce their appetite for this favourite pastime. Like we have menses with periodicity, each virile man has a rhythm to ejaculate every few days when his scrotum is brimming with seminal fluid. It literally turns into a pressure cooker wanting to detonate. The shaft ought to ventilate and if you don’t have a lawful foxhole, you got to bluff the banana- help yourself, though not as much fun. However, some men are mentally sick or have an awful mentality- monsters who don’t belong to a civilized society; and they choose the morally difficult, nonetheless physically not so difficult act of plunder.

I am about to suggest an unconstitutional and culturally sensitive alternative to tame these monsters, which may not go down well in our predominantly orthodox society. The whole idea is to provide theses Devils with a legitimate silk grove to off load their prostatic perspiration. It requires openness of thoughts, right intentions, logic and finally some hope.

Round Mounds of Beehounds
‘SITA & PITA’ have confused our status about prostitution. SITA stands for The Immoral Traffic (Suppression) Act of 1956 and PITA is The Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act of 1986. The concluding remarks from some learned lawyers about prostitution in India goes like this:
• Prostitution in itself is not illegal but propagating or developing this profession is illegal.
• Prostitution is illegal in India, while a woman can use her body in private for a commercial purpose.
• The Indian law does not refer to the practice of selling one’s own sexual service as prostitution.

If you want to be more baffled, then read the legal jargon of SITA & PITA itself, readily available on the internet. The fact of the reality is that other than a few top notch legal eagles, none is clear. My little bit of lazy research suggests that prostitution is officially legal in India, but it has the similar connotation which says corruption is illegal. Our ignorance is reinforced by the vagueness and dubiousness of the judicial literature, which legalises a consensual sex between two adult partners for money. There are some 77 countries which have constitutionalised prostitution and 5 countries have no laws against it.

In present circumstances, I think decriminalizing prostitution may be a right step in the right direction. Decriminalizing is not legalizing, but a lessening of criminal penalties for engaging in consensual paid sex, and unambiguously stating the law with no ifs & buts. One is sure of the fact that neither this eradicates rapes, nor has any direct impact on the rapist. Albeit, indirectly it offers an opportunity, a vent to those frustrated demons, I mentioned earlier. A very small step in sync with our changing moral and social fabric, which might cut down offenses against women- Hope.

Opening of government owned and NGO operated adult stores may be considered as an additional option, for their convenience and likely effectiveness. They should be structured to provide a host of services- sex toys, adult video parlours, legalised pornographic materials, may be a decent place to spit-shine the old water pump, and most of all; professional counselling to tame the risqué immoral personality.

As a woman I do find this notion repulsive and circumstantially apologetic for a rapists, much like how journalists are remorseful for a terrorists. But restricting and banning every entity related to prostitution might further worsen the issue. One of the ways to prevent rape is to bolt yourself inside a fortress wearing a chastity belt, while the other one simply offers- certified round mounds of beehounds.

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I'm an Army wife, balancing my life as a homemaker and an IT freelancer. One has been a procrastinator of sorts and it has taken me a while to overcome my writo-phobia. I hope to be an author someday. I am a foodie who loves to cook and a travel planner who loves to travel.
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