What happened to the seven-year-old child in Lonavala is yet another tragic incident that adds to the sad list of rapes and other acts of sexual violence against women. We have lost count of the number of such cases. The incident reportedly occurred on the terrace of a resort in Lonavala, owned by a former Ulhasnagar MLA Kumar Ailani. The resort management conveniently claimed that their CCTV cameras were not in working condition. These claims are flimsy at best and a terrible tragedy for the victim’s family. Reports of rape are a daily phenomenon, to the extent that unless brutality reaches above a certain notch, our responses to the incidents are usually of learned apathy.
Yet, India has been making the international headlines for the fact that it is probably the least safe country for women. Has our collective capacity as a nation rendered powerless before the institutionalised perversion that indirectly condones violence, especially sexual violence, on women? Once again, is the outrage related to the fact that the victim is a an innocent child? The problem, clearly, lies within us and it’s time to look into the mirror. Apart from holding the government and the police forces responsible for what happened to the hapless young journalist, we must also start the change from our own homes, introspecting the reasons why women, even those accompanied by men, are still considered easy preys and targets of violence that are much more than mere sexual overpowering of the victim. More than anything else, however, the police must nab the culprit at the earliest and try him in a court of law. The court, though, must hang the perpetrator for brutally raping and murdering an innocent child.