Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Bhanwari Devi- a national icon and great inspiration.

Two years ago on 16th December a horrific incident of sexual assault and murder happened in India's capital New Delhi. The brutality of the crime shook the entire nation, people were angry and even frustrated about regular occurrence of such crimes and severe delay in delivering the justice.This anger and nationwide protests forced administration to deliver justice in timely fashion in this particular case but still there are many victims who are still waiting for the justice for the crime which changed their lives. Current heavily loaded and severely crippled system failed to deliver justice to them, after going through the trauma of sexual abuse these victims have to relive that horror every time they go to court and come back without any justice. Our society and this system has to step up to end this trauma of these people. 

This post is not about that incident but about a brave women named Bhanwari Devi who not only survived one such assault but also fought against the culprits, against the system which failed to deliver justice to her and is still bravely fighting her battle and waiting for justice to be delivered. Nandita Das's movie Bawander is based on story of her life, it is worth a watch if anyone wants to know her story. She faced many problems and hurdles during her fight for justice, not only the criminals who committed this act were from upper caste but they were also politically very powerful which helped them to manipulate police as well as judiciary. But this brave lady didn't loose her courage, she didn't even leave the village no matter how much they taunted her or tortured her family by social boycotts. Her argument was, if she didn't do any wrong why should she suffer. It was not she who did anything shameful so why she should leave the village, why she should feel guilty? We all who know the caste system in village and various roles it plays in politics can understand how much courage and conviction is required to fight against these things. In many of these places women are not even allowed to step outside the home or village unless it is for some work or medical treatment, so one can imagine how much resistance Bhanwari Devi must have faced to even register a case against culprits who raped her. People like her don't get much national attention or recognition as their stories carry very limited use for media or politicians. No political party is interested in taking up such issues as caste dynamics is integral part of politics of almost all parties. They don't look at criminals just as criminals but their religion or caste also becomes very important as it can disturb certain sections of society. It can mess up their political equations depending on which religion or caste victim belongs and which religion or caste perpetrator belongs, so they base their reactions based on political calculations. This is so disgusting but it happens all the time and so far no political party tried to separate these things from politics, I hope that at least they do it in future. Unfortunately the victims of such heinous crime have to face the burn of all this mess, they suffer at the hands of criminals who commit the crime and then at the hands of system which fails to deliver justice to them.

I don't know how long Bhanwari Devi and people like her have to wait to get justice from this system. I am glad to see that she still has faith on this system and waiting patiently for it to deliver what it promises to every Indian (speedy and fair justice). But not everyone who goes through this has courage and patience like her, for them she can be a great example of courage and determination. She showed that if you are not at fault no need to feel any guilt or shame or run away avoid taunts or scared of social torture, Story of her fight is a great inspiration for all of us. If sportsperson, cine stars or politicians can be national icons then I think people like Bhanwari Devi definitely deserve to be a national icon and for me personally she is a national icon.  

Thanks for reading and please share your views on this topic.

[Copyright : Vinay Thakur. Please contact the author for re-posting or publishing]

Links:

No comments:

Post a Comment