21 October, 2020

Look Before You Creep

The new law evolved rationally. Just don’t be shocked by Tejpal’s fate.

Illustration by Sorit
Look Before You Creep

This law has barely clocked a year. We have not seen how it has worked and we don’t have enough data yet to review the law. Is the law harsh, or is it being abused or misused, we don’t know. Really, a review of a legislation can’t take place because one high-profile upper-class man gets arrested for rape. That’s not, to my mind, a rationale for research, academic scholarship or for any legal review of the case. The motivations for everybody suddenly asking this question and even using totally misplaced and misconceived words like ‘draconian’ is coming from the fact that the law has come too close to home now. As long as it was the people living on the fringes of society, the slum-dwellers, migrant workers, domestic helps, we couldn’t care less. In fact, if anybody was objecting to the death penalty for rape, it was in fact the women’s groups.

I have always maintained that law is a very small answer to the bigger problem of sexual violence that we have. There are multiple other engagements we need to develop, including...



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