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Many rape cases in India involve men in positions of power, like a recent case that has emerged in Chattisgarh. Until we have strict implementation of existing laws, this will continue.
A recent piece of news reported a case registered against a local BJP leader in Raipur for allegedly raping a woman when she was teenager. As per the case details, the accused had married her and later abandoned her, in spite of already being married to someone else – besides the fact that marrying a woman under 18 is blatantly illegal and an abuse of power.
The incident occurred in the tribal dominated area of Chhattisgarh. This is not the first or the last time an innocent has been brutalized by a man in a powerful position. In fact it reminds me again of the horrifying Kathua rape case, where the main accused were former government officers and policemen.
One of the cases that received maximum media attention was the Jessica Lal murder case. In this the accused had managed to escape justice the first time as he was the son of a powerful politician. It was only after a collective outcry by the entire nation that the case was once again investigated and he was convicted.
Justice is supposed to be equal for all as per the Indian constitution. It should favour only the truth but this is far from the actual scenario. Men in power usually manage to bypass justice by using various means such as bribery, intimidation or power influence. They believe that the law is different for them as they wield power and hence can wreak havoc without a second thought about the consequences.
If there has been a crime committed by a powerful person, the victim or their family might face harassment even for merely filing a case. If the case does get registered, the accused usually manipulates and drags on the case for years to come. This also financially depletes the victims, not to mention the mental and emotional trauma they would have to go through.
There is a need to bring about a change in the very mindset of the people to stop the dominance by men in powerful position. More strict laws need to be enforced. With proper implementation of the same, it is necessary to ensure they understand that its not just the privileges their position offer but responsibility as well. They should be made aware that they are in no way above the others and hence will not get any preferential treatment if they are found guilty of a crime.
Justice is the fundamental right of every citizen and all are equal in the eyes of law. It is time that this is put in practice. Only then will the abuse of power, by those in influential position, will stop.
Image Source Unsplash used for representative purposes only
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Rajshri Deshpande, who played the fiery protagonist in Trial by Fire along with Abhay Deol speaks of her journey and her social work.
Rajshri Deshpande as the protagonist in ‘Trial by Fire’, the recent Netflix show has received raving reviews along with the show itself for its sensitive portrayal of the Uphaar Cinema Hall fire tragedy, 1997 and its aftermath.
The limited series is based on the book by the same name written by Neelam and Shekhar Krishnamoorthy, who lost both their children in the tragedy. We got an opportunity to interview Rajshri Deshpande who played Neelam Krishnamoorthy, the woman who has been relentlessly crusading in the court for holding the owners responsible for the sheer negligence.
Rajshri Deshpande is more than an actor. She is also a social warrior, the rare celebrity from the film industry who has also gone back to her roots to give to poverty struck farming villages in her native Marathwada, with her NGO Nabhangan Foundation. Of course a chance to speak with her one on one was a must!
“What is a woman’s job, Ramesh? Taking care of parents-in-law, husband, children, home and things at work—all at the same time? She isn’t God or a superhuman."
The arrays of workstations were occupied by people peering into their computer screens. The clicks of keyboard keys were punctuated by the occasional footsteps moving around to brainstorm or collaborate with colleagues in their cubicles. Most employees went about their tasks without looking at the person seated on either side of their workstation. Meenakshi was one of them.
The thirty-one-year-old marketing manager in a leading eCommerce company in India sat straight in her seat, her eyes on the screen, her fingers punching furiously into the keys. She was in a flow and wanted to finish the report while the thoughts and words were coming effortlessly into her mind.
Natu-Natu. The mellifluous ringtone interrupted her thoughts. She frowned at her mobile phone with half a mind to keep it ringing until she noticed the caller’s name on the screen, making her pick up the phone immediately.
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