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A Modest Proposal for the Castration of Male Police Officers

December 31, 2011

Dear Kafila Readers,
Here is a modest proposal to castrate police men and male police officers and security forces personnel in India who come into contact with women in the line of duty. I thought it would be an appropriately thoughtful, and at the same time useful and practical way to end a turbulent year. The context from which this modest proposal emerges is elaborated upon below. In a remarkably forthright statement, the chief of police in the state of Andhra Pradesh, Shri Dinesh Reddy in southern India has recently said that ‘fashionably dressed women’, including ‘women who wear salwar kameez in villages’ provoke and invite rape, as men are not able to control their ‘sexual jealousy’ and the ‘police are not able to control men’. The Indian Express and Asian News International (see below) have carried reports of this statement.

Incidentally, the last few years have shown a high incidence of custodial rape all over India, where police men and security forces personnel have raped women detained by them. According to some reports, these incidents are on the rise.  In other words, police men are increasingly unable to control the men that they themselves are.

Since it is unlikely that women will not be arrested and detained by policemen and security forces personnel in India in the forseeable future, the only way to prevent the offense of ‘custodial rape’, following from Shri Dinesh Reddy’s insight, would be to castrate all policemen, male police officers and security forces personnel (for their own good). At least this way, police men and other masculine custodians of law, order and national security will be prevented from being ‘provoked’ by the mere presence of ‘salwar kameez’ clad women, or otherwise ‘fashionably’ dressed members of the female sex.

This way, our honorable men in uniform will be protected from their feelings of ‘sexual jealousy’ and the trap of being provoked into unwittingly having to rape the next woman who happens to be in their custody.

A good beginning can be made with the castration of the chief of police of Andhra Pradesh, Shri Dinesh Reddy himself,who has done us all the favor of pointing out the enormity of the problem that affects men in general, (and therefore, men in uniform, in particular). There are humane and painless chemical methods available, including multiple, high-dosage injections of that well known ingestible contraceptive depo-provera. if these methods prove expensive, there is a lot to learn from veterinary science, where the Burdizzo method (involving the skilled use of pliers) and sharp surgical implements (under localized anesthesia, so that the police officer concerned remains fully sentient and aware as he consents to be ‘protected’ from provocation) are also viable and affordable options. Of course, such operations should only be performed under strict medical supervision and in keeping with the highest standards of hygiene, as commonly found in police lock ups through out the length and breadth of our fortunate Republic.

51 Comments leave one →
  1. December 31, 2011 7:40 PM

    The proposal is anything but modest, I must say!
    :)

  2. Ratna Raman permalink
    December 31, 2011 8:30 PM

    Absolutely brilliant ! That amazing giant among satirists, Jonathan Swift would have been delighted to see the beginning of his title being adapted to to such good purpose.
    Reading your piece finally helped stem the outrage i felt upon viewing the morning papers.
    The idea of provocatively dressed women responsible for male excesses has really been done to death and this is really a quick , painless way of settling the controversy.

  3. Mali permalink
    December 31, 2011 8:32 PM

    A good beginning can be made with the castration of the chief of police of Andhra Pradesh, who has done us all the favor of pointing out the enormity of the problem that affects men – Extremely hard hitting statement !!!!

  4. gag permalink
    December 31, 2011 9:25 PM

    frankly, i felt tempted even seeing a fully covered woman!! and sometimes i dont feel any temptation while seeing a girl wearing revealing dress… so, dress has no role to play :)

  5. Parvez permalink
    December 31, 2011 10:12 PM

    Absolute nutcracker! What a way to welcome a new year. Thanks Shuddha!

  6. Jayasree.A.K permalink
    December 31, 2011 10:12 PM

    Great idea. This should be widely publicized. Projecting women’s dress as the reason for rape has become a common idiom in all platforms.

  7. December 31, 2011 10:48 PM

    This article is such a rant!

    Agreed that the chief of AP police gave a crap statement, and that statement does insult women in India, but that doesn’t mean that you go all out and blame all the men in the police department! Rant about castrating Dinesh Reddy! Rant about those people on the wrong side in the custodial rapes!

    No matter how many bad experiences I have had with the police in India, I still empathize with them for the kind of demanding/demeaning/disrespectful duties they have to carry out at the behest of the baabus/politicians, irrespective of them being corrupt or non-corrupt.

    Women in India, “especially” the ones who love to exercise their right to wear “modern” dresses but “care a damn about the political process” in the country, deserve to be treated this way (being asked to dress less modern).

    The police department in India has always been understaffed. A quick googling around for Police to Civilian ratio in the world shows some glaring numbers of the kind of shortage we have in the Indian police forces (Pakistan has more cops per 1000 than India!). And to top the existing shortage, a good part of the police force in India is basically used for taking care of the politicians, VIPs and their chailas.

    So if women want to wear “modern” dresses without facing any negative consequences, let them be proactive and ask for Police Reforms in India. Even the police will be grateful to those who ask for reforms.

    Custodial rape is a symptom of a bad police system, which again, can be addressed through reforms. Just blaming the police for any and everything doesn’t solve any issue!

    In a country of a billion people, its just impossible to address the problems due to the upper class dressing sense when there are enough problems to be taken care off.

    • sexgenderbody permalink
      January 1, 2012 2:56 AM

      do you work on a farm? because that is one giant pile of horse shit that you just dropped here.

      rapists and rape enablers always find a reason to blame the person being raped:

      – “country of a billion people..”

      oh, so what population count works for making rapists responsible for the rape they commit? 900k? 500k? 25k? 10? let me ask you…at what number would you abandon that bullshit pretense and dodge of responsibility?

      here is something for you to consider:

      what widely adapted and worshipped sexist and misogynistic and rape-enabling values led to a high population, widespread poverty, corrupt government, under staffed police departments and every other cheap, old, sexist excuse you cite here?

      – “people on the wrong side in the custodial rapes”

      that would include you and anyone other rape apologists or people who blame the person getting raped for the actions of the rapists.

      wipe your shoes the next time you come into the room

      • January 1, 2012 11:28 AM

        @sexgenderbody Hey! you stupid,the above guy is just trying to make a point that not all the policemen should be blamed for the rapes that takes place in our country. And what wrong has Dinesh Reddy said when he told we cannot control all the men..You stupid you are not watching an action movie here that some hero policemen will come and rescue all the women’s from being raped.. When a policemen on duty rapes a women he doesn’t asks permission from his officer.. The best the officer can do is suspend him or ask for his resignation and him to the law..Your and Sudha’s aim is just to write a wonderful piece of shit and have comments pouring in from all directions as this will bring you intelligent fame moron… Think about the kind of training our policemen gets, then about the king of salary they get, then about the treatment they get from their bosses and then think that they too have a family… They are not your servants but still they do for the nation and you morons blame the entire police fraternity… What wrong has nitin said when asked about police reforms which we all know is must needed but you don’t have time to praise him on that because this way you think your comment would end up on the losing side… We are not having a debate here…We know well what the problems are and how to go about it and we need your help too in this but if you are only interested in criticising than sorry I don’t consider you as a citizen…I am sorry if I have hurted any of your(Suddha and your) sentiments but please it’s useless to reply to someone like that harsh…You can be more polite and tell him about the real issue of our cop system and he might be genuinely interested in talking to you about it and that’s how we work together for the progress of our nation..Wish you a Happy New year to you and Sudha…Have a nice time

      • January 2, 2012 3:04 AM

        I have great respect for people working in the farm. Not sure what makes you think farm workers drop “giant pile of horse shit”!

        I am not blindly blaming the victim. I just said/meant, if an educated well to do woman in India chose to be so far removed from the political issues in the country, and still went ahead and wore “modern” clothes, leading to her being a victim of rape, I will not blame the police. I’d certainly blame the rapist (irrespective of the rapist being a police or not).

        Lemme just throw a number: If India reaches 1 empowered, fully capable, unhindered police for every 400 people in India, I’d assure you it’d work in reducing any kind of rape drastically (yes, including the modern dressing rapes). Now to give you an idea about the understaffing in the Indian police, my ideal ratio would require 30,00,000 (30 lakhs or 3 million) capable police officers to ensure proper law and order among the 1.2 billion people. Current breed of constables do not come under the “capable” category, either because they are incompetent, or “most often” because of the existing police department structure that renders them incapable.

        >>>>>>>”what widely adapted and worshipped sexist and misogynistic and rape-enabling values led to a high population, widespread poverty, corrupt government, under staffed police departments and every other cheap, old, sexist excuse you cite here?” <<<<<<<>>>>>>>- “people on the wrong side in the custodial rapes”
        that would include you and anyone other rape apologists or people who blame the person getting raped for the actions of the rapists.
        wipe your shoes the next time you come into the room <<<<<<<<<<<

        If you insist! btw I am not sure what room/shoes you are referring to, I still feel I wasted a good 30 mins writing this response to your rant! I welcome your response (sensible ones appreciated)

        Happy New Year all!

      • January 2, 2012 3:11 AM

        @ sexgenderbody here’s my point by point explanation to whatever sense I could make of, from your rant.

        I have great respect for people working in the farm. Not sure what makes you think farm workers drop “giant pile of horse shit”!

        I am not blindly blaming the victim. I just said/meant, if an educated well to do woman in India chose to be so far removed from the political issues in the country, and still went ahead and wore “modern” clothes, leading to her being a victim of rape, I will not blame the police. I’d certainly blame the rapist (irrespective of the rapist being a police or not).

        Lemme just “throw” a number: If India reaches 1 empowered, fully capable, unhindered police for every 400 people in India, I’d assure you it’d work in reducing any kind of rape drastically (yes, including the modern dressing rapes). Now to give you an idea about the understaffing in the Indian police, my ideal ratio would require 30,00,000 (30 lakhs or 3 million) capable police officers to ensure proper law and order among the 1.2 billion people. Current breed of constables do not come under the “capable” category, either because they are incompetent, or “most often” because of the existing police department structure that renders them incapable.

        >>>>>>>”what widely adapted and worshipped sexist and misogynistic and rape-enabling values led to a high population, widespread poverty, corrupt government, under staffed police departments and every other cheap, old, sexist excuse you cite here?” <<<<<<<>>>>>>>- “people on the wrong side in the custodial rapes”
        that would include you and anyone other rape apologists or people who blame the person getting raped for the actions of the rapists.
        wipe your shoes the next time you come into the room <<<<<<<<<<<

        If you insist! btw I am not sure what room/shoes you are referring to, I still feel I wasted a good 30 mins writing this response to your rant! I welcome your response (sensible ones appreciated)

        Happy New Year all!

        ps: moderator, had to edit and resubmit. feel free to edit this post script out as well as the earlier reply. thanks.

  8. sexgenderbody permalink
    January 1, 2012 12:41 AM

    yes. yes. yes.

    high marks to you for this. if menz cannot be stopped from raping de wimminz because the clothing is too powerful for their little mindz, then the only thing we can do to protekt dem is to cut off der ballz.

    poor widdle menz. all those wimminz and their body wayz taking control of everything.

  9. sexgenderbody permalink
    January 1, 2012 2:44 PM

    @bikashranjanmazumder:

    on the content of the words you wrote, you made no sense in anyway whatsoever.

    however, I think I can paraphrase your intent as follows:
    – you stupid moron
    – rage, not blame men, rage
    – you stupid moron
    – we have real work to do, by real men, who know how to do real work because they are real men
    – please have a nice day

    1. no…your anger and incoherence do not change alter a thing I said about the previous commenter. I don’t care that you’re a man or angry. so, pick another strategy.
    2. you managed to say something every bit as asinine, sexist, rape-apologising as the commenter before:

    “The best the officer can do is suspend him or ask for his resignation and him to the law”

    The best that officer can do is arrest the rapist cop just like a rapist civilian, charge him with rape, put his ass in jail and have a judge decide whether or not he merits bail. That is “the best”. Not this wink & a nod pretense of giving a shit about rape victims that you described.

    If you want to feel good about yourself, try standing on the side of ending rape instead of the side trying to get away with rape.

  10. January 1, 2012 10:32 PM

    The super cop who tries to find alibi for his rapist and the potentially rapist subordinate may not be just being forthright. Blaming the victim in rape seems to be so typical of tradition and many ‘desi’ forms of erudition.

  11. Monica permalink
    January 2, 2012 1:04 AM

    I couldn’t believe my ears when i heard what the Idiot police was saying!! Absolutely Insane!! And what the heck is “sexual Jealousy”..?! Honestly, what does it mean..?!
    Aren’t sarees (If that’s what the idiot means by ‘Traditional’) more exposing of the upper portion of our body than salwar kameez which completely covers you from top to bottom..?! Also, SO WHAT??
    A rapist is a rapist is a rapist!!

  12. January 2, 2012 11:00 AM

    @nitin and sexgenderbody: Wow, just wow.

    And to Shuddhabrata/Kafila – It’s good that you don’t censor such comments – at least we get to know the sort of reprobates that live among us.

    • sexgenderbody permalink
      January 2, 2012 11:15 PM

      concise, conceited, dismissive.

    • January 3, 2012 11:13 AM

      @Rex

      True! Thats what I like about Kafila!

  13. January 2, 2012 4:34 PM

    About time somebody suggested this. No wait, IMPLEMENTED this!!! :P
    Brilliant write-up!

  14. Mohan Rao permalink
    January 2, 2012 7:32 PM

    This might be Anna Hazare – Hindu Khomieni without the anti-imperialism – way of going about it.

    But not even in jest or irony should we accept horrendous punitive measures like this, or indeed capital punishment.

    No sense of humour you might say. Quite. Some things are not to be joked about.

    • January 3, 2012 11:13 AM

      Glad that someone other than me sees the Hazaare-Khomeini angle in this post!

      • Manish permalink
        November 21, 2012 3:51 PM

        Nitin, seriously man, are you really an a**hole or just trying to be one. There’s no communal angle in this article. And I don’t understand your sympathy for the Police and Mr. Reddy. I mean, I understand the rust that has crippled the entire Police department of this country but I don’t understand even after that who give them the right to be corrupt, or in this context rape women.

        Leave aside modern dresses, even if a girl is nude and you try to molest her, it is you who’s balls should be cut off. You can charge the girl for indecent behavior or what not but man, if you have no control on your mind that resides in your di*k then that’s not a problem of a girl.

        Moreover, what are you so optimistic about in this country. You may call me a cynic if you like but but I don’t find any fu**ing optimism in anything in this country or what most ‘honorable’ Mr. Reddy.

  15. Nimi permalink
    January 2, 2012 9:27 PM

    I just don’t get it: “if an educated well to do woman in India chose to be so far removed from the political issues in the country, and still went ahead and wore “modern” clothes, leading to her being a victim of rape, I will not blame the police. I’d certainly blame the rapist (irrespective of the rapist being a police or not).”

    What does the above statement even mean???
    What a woman chooses to wear is her bloody business.. without being politically aware or engaging with the constitution or standing with Anna Hazare or even reading the bloody newspapers. What does her engagement with political issues(or ignorance).have to do with her basic human fundamental right to wear what she pleases and NOT get raped. . I can’t believe that you have to be politically aware to choose your clothes. modern or not. This is unbelievable!

    • January 3, 2012 11:58 AM

      Nimi,

      I disagree with this article because it generalizes and pictures the whole police force in India as rapists.

      I have never said that rapists should not be taken to task, to the fullest extent allowed by the law. Its just that I dont talk like Anna Hazaare or like the author of this article, that quite a few here are thinking I am sympathizing with the rapist more than the victim!

      If you have a problem with law enforcement, ask for law enforcement reforms. If you think its easy for the rapist to skirt the judicial process, ask for judicial reforms,

      Let me try giving you an another analogy: There is a hungry lion in the forest and a human is strolling in the forest, even after being warned by the forest guard. Now, of course, the human gets attacked by the lion.

      I’d say the human was at fault for venturing into the forest completely aware of the possibility of coming across the hungry lion. You, are blaming the forest guard.

      I agree women have rights to wear what they want, but they should be aware of consequences they may face and be ready for it. If the consequences are a problem, then they have two options:

      1) move to a country where its extremely rare to face such consequences

      or

      2) work towards making your current country a safer place for everyone by asking for reforms.

      Just sitting in the arm chair and cribbing about rights to wear modern dresses or salwar kameez helps no one.

      • jiah permalink
        January 3, 2012 7:53 PM

        Mr. Nitin,

        You wrote:
        “Let me try giving you an another analogy: There is a hungry lion in the forest and a human is strolling in the forest, even after being warned by the forest guard. Now, of course, the human gets attacked by the lion.
        I’d say the human was at fault for venturing into the forest completely aware of the possibility of coming across the hungry lion. You, are blaming the forest guard.”

        There is a basic problem with your analogy which, I believe, is why you keep getting negative comments. The very fact that you draw this comparison suggests that you believe that women have no business entering the public sphere, or navigating public spaces. Because you compare public spaces to a jungle which is a lion’s (man’s) “natural” environment and in which a human (woman) is an interloper who has no right to be there. What if I reverse your analogy? Think of the woman as the lion, the denizen of the forest, and the man as the hunter who gets in and shoots the lion even after the forest guard expressly forbids him to. The hunter definitely is at fault. But isn’t it the forest guard’s duty to protect the lion? Shouldn’t he have checked the hunter for weapons and denied him entry or otherwise made sure that he doesn’t harm the lion? If, instead of protecting (or at least attempting to protect) the lion, the forest guard leans back in his armchair and says, “Oh well, the forest guard can’t be responsible for preventing killings. It’s the lion’s own fault for walking around where it might get shot at”, well, other lions of the forest might be forgiven for wanting to tear out the forest guard’s innards and chew his sensitive parts.

        As far as the original post goes, I think most people agree that it is a bitterly rhetorical response to Dinesh Reddy’s comment. Perhaps, in taking it literally, you are just not getting the point — that people are incensed at such an irresponsible comment by the representative of an institution (the police force) charged with protecting and safeguarding the life and welfare of citizens.

      • January 4, 2012 12:24 AM

        @Jiah

        You are right in giving your analogy, and I agree with it completely. In my earlier comments I was trying to point out that there just aren’t as many forest guards to carry out any sensible checks. So instead of blaming the forest guards, it’d be in the best interests of everyone to ensure there are more competent forest guards. The hunters have a free reign right now.

        Rhetorical or not, these kind of posts and thinking can only alienate those very few competent/honest/good workers in any of these government agencies who do more than what their duties demand, and IMHO, it doesn’t serve any purpose other than blowing off some steam.

        PS: I started reading Kafila very recently, so I am not sure if there are a lot of rhetorical posts here. If so, I guess thats why I am the only one taking this post in a non rhetorical, non-figurative way.

    • Bad Indian Woman permalink
      January 9, 2012 9:25 PM

      Err Nimmi, men like Nitin don’t think women are human at all, so the question of human rights doesn’t come up.

      We are just pretty little sub-humans (with boobs and asses) who spend all our time blaming poor men after we flaunt our bodies, in a…gasp SALWAR KAMEEZ :)

      Nitin needs to get laid.

  16. Anuradha Singh permalink
    January 3, 2012 2:25 AM

    Suddha,

    Absolute stunner. Thanx for this new perspective. Women dressed provocatively was doing the rounds for a long time now.

    Nitin,

    When you say “Women in India, “especially” the ones who love to exercise their right to wear “modern” dresses but “care a damn about the political process” in the country, deserve to be treated this way (being asked to dress less modern)” do you even realize what crap are you talking ? Who the hell gave you or any other man the right to “ask us to wear less modern dress”?? Do we ever come and tell you what to and what not to wear ? You can wear absolute “modern dresses” i.e. shorts in public but women cannot …. Can I ask why? Who gave you or any other man the right to be our moral police? Its high time you realize that men need to stop acting as self appointed police for women. YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO ASK US TO WEAR LESS MODERN DRESSES. IT IS AN INDIVIDUAL CHOICE.

    And what are you talking of dress? Have you never heard of women in burkas being raped? I hope you read newspapers. So then what do you have to say about this? Where is the provocation? (if at all). And when i say this, i am by no way saying that “modern” dresses are provocative. Dressing is an individual choice please understand.

    Police is understaffed, its a thankless job etc etc. Ok yes even If I agree it is, does that give them the right to rape? Can one rape a woman because he is doing a thankless job and works in an understaffed organisation? What the hell are you arguing?

    When you say “In a country of a billion people, its just impossible to address the problems due to the upper class dressing sense when there are enough problems to be taken care off.” Yes I agree there are many problems in this country to be taken care of but how do you call this a problem of upper class dressing? Do women and girls in lower class ( I am not sure though what do you mean by upper class and lower class) even have the choice of deciding on their dresses? I am sure there are many women and girls in the remotest of villages who would want to dress differently, if given an option. So this is not a “problem” first of all, and secondly its not an “upper class” phenomena.

    Another Issue that I have with you is that even if there are innumerable problems to be taken care off, do you not consider this as an issue? Does this not come within the ambit of social issues that needs to be taken care of? Taking care of issues should not be done in a biased and patriarchal way. Women constitute half the population and issues pertaining to their freedom are equally important, as are other important problems that you talk about. And if this is such a non issue then why at all deal with it, when you have bigger problems at hand? Just let women wear what they want to and you proceed to taking care of other important issues.

    My last suggestion to you would be try to think a little before going all guns blazing about an issue as sensitive and as important as this. Allow me to tell you some personal stuff. Personally I love wearing Salwar Kameez, but without a dupatta. I am sure a salwar kameez becomes “provocative” without a dupatta since it then does not cover me the way it ought to. My sister who is just an year younger to me loves wearing Western clothes. We come from the same social background, attended the same school and university, belong to same class and exactly the same level of education. But we like to dress differently. The lady who comes to help me in my daily chores ( whom in common terms we call maid and who surely belongs to the “lower class”) likes to wear only Western dresses. By western I do not mean that she wears expensive Zara clothing or short skirts but surely jeans. She has now been helping me for past four years but I have never seen her wearing Indian stuff except may be on festivals. So class does not have much to do with the choice. Its just about the comfort level. Since my sister or my domestic help wears Western clothes, it does not give anyone the right to harass them or tell them to dress “properly.”

    Upper class or lower class, men just want to dictate terms to women and women are just supposed to fit into men’s ideas and imaginations of a perfect Indian woman. Patriarchy gives men the right to think they are the superior breed and hence in a better position to dictate their terms and this is something ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE to us.

    Happy New Year to you and all !

    • January 3, 2012 12:34 PM

      Anuradha,

      “YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO ASK US TO WEAR LESS MODERN DRESSES. IT IS AN INDIVIDUAL CHOICE.” –> Yes ma’am, I have no right, neither did I exercise this non-existant right. It definitely is an individual choice, but one should realize that she/he is living in a country with a weak law enforcement and judiciary system, and that police are not there at his/her beck and call.

      “Have you never heard of women in burkas being raped? I hope you read newspapers. So then what do you have to say about this? Where is the provocation? (if at all). And when i say this, i am by no way saying that “modern” dresses are provocative. Dressing is an individual choice please understand.” –> This article is about generalizing one cop’s idiotic statement to the whole police force, and my responses are criticizing that generalization.

      “Police is understaffed, its a thankless job etc etc. Ok yes even If I agree it is, does that give them the right to rape? Can one rape a woman because he is doing a thankless job and works in an understaffed organisation? What the hell are you arguing?” –> Rapists are rapists. Rapists can be doctors, engineers, lawyers, police or anyone from any profession. Just because Shiney Ahuja was accused (not sure if he was proven guilty) of raping a maid, did you or the author of this article go ahead and ask for all the male actors in Bollywood to be castrated? A rapist is committing a crime, and I find it hard to understand why the rapists’ profession is so important!

      Just because doctors can give life doesn’t mean there is no doctor in the world who takes life. Just because an engineer can make computers work doesn’t mean there is no engineer who can mess up computers. Exactly the same way, just because a police officer is supposed to enforce the law, it doesn’t mean that there are a few bad rotten apples that do exactly the opposite.

      “Another Issue that I have with you is that even if there are innumerable problems to be taken care off, do you not consider this as an issue? Does this not come within the ambit of social issues that needs to be taken care of? Taking care of issues should not be done in a biased and patriarchal way. Women constitute half the population and issues pertaining to their freedom are equally important, as are other important problems that you talk about. And if this is such a non issue then why at all deal with it, when you have bigger problems at hand? Just let women wear what they want to and you proceed to taking care of other important issues.” –> Awesome. Works for me!

      “Since my sister or my domestic help wears Western clothes, it does not give anyone the right to harass them or tell them to dress “properly.” ” –> True no one has any right to tell anyone what to wear and what not to wear, as long as its constitutionally legal.

      “Upper class or lower class, men just want to dictate terms to women and women are just supposed to fit into men’s ideas and imaginations of a perfect Indian woman. Patriarchy gives men the right to think they are the superior breed and hence in a better position to dictate their terms and this is something ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE to us”. –> Not sure why this keeps coming in replies to my comments! My reference to upper class women was for their non-participation in the democratic process. Because, lower class men/women alike are the ones who swing the election results.

      upper class = a person who can manage to live a good life in india by bribing, and/or by not being bothered about the socio-political problems, not direly affected by inflation.

      • January 5, 2012 10:07 AM

        Nitin, under your seeming rationality lies a whole bed of steaming prejudices. And sadly, they aren’t terribly original prejudices either. The core of your argument is so profoundly rotten that I can’t resist responding to it. Which is that most rape is a ‘consequence’ of dress choices made by mostly upper class women who are out of touch with the reality of this country. Further, that police officers are untrained working class men who cannot be depended upon to defend these silly women, who are basically straining the precious time and resources of this poor country by their ridiculous choices. Let me put a couple of facts before your fact-starved brain:
        1. Every single rape in the world occurs because of the availability of opportunity between a rapist and potential victim. While the rapist may or may NOT have all sorts of ideas about provocative dressing and whatnot, what he really needs to commit the crime is an understanding of a woman as vulnerable, and therefore liable to be overpowered at a particular time and spot. In fact, if the woman is confidently upper class (which means she probably has access to various resources including justice and redressal) she is less likely to be chosen by a rapist. What rapists look for in their victims is what all criminals look for in their victims – opportunity. Opportunity means how alone and vulnerable and unsupported a woman is likely to be. Hence, no logical connection between dressing and rape, and hence the incredible variety in profiles of rape victims – very young girls, very old women, burka-clad, salwar-kameez-wearing, jeans-wearing, any-old-combination wearing.
        2. Thousands of policemen and law enforcers do actually see their jobs as preventing all crime including rape without blaming the victim, and many of them would respond with embarrassment at Reddy’s statement. Thousands of policemen are in fact not men at all, they are women. Would you like to factor in their response to this issue? Many of course (within and outside the police force) see the victim as wholly responsible – its an old, old strategy of those in power – to shift the onus of protection squarely back on to the victim. Why only rape? If a working class family goes to the police station to report a missing child, they are harangued and abused for wasting the time of the police and being incapable of taking care of their children. If the missing child is a girl she may be openly called a prostitute for having (according to the police) eloped with her boyfriend. Let’s take another example – Delhi Police has been issuing advertisements saying a majority of accident victims in Delhi last year were pedestrians. So who should be more careful? No, no, not the drivers! The ads were aimed at pedestrians, asking them to be alert, and only use (non existent) footpaths and overbridges. Which pedestrian in his right mind would throw himself in front of a speeding vehicle? We all make reasonable assumptions about human behaviour when we take a single step. That includes women and pedestrians and other potentially vulnerable populations. What makes me sick is the assumption you make that women don’t think before dressing, or making any other choice, that life for well-off women is one endless party. Let me tell you, most women agonise over their dressing choices. This includes women who wear ‘modern dress’ (whatever the hell that means in such a diverse country). If at the end of it, they wear something that makes them feel comfortable or sexy or whatever they want to feel, they usually do that with a fucking good understanding of their environment. And even though women are told since their birth that they are responsible for whatever ill befalls them, in fact the truth is rape cannot be foreseen. It happens randomly, whenever opportunity presents itself. Millions of women around the world have taken self-defence courses, organised rallies to demand action, sat on committees to change the law, become prosecutors of rapists, trained as counsellors to help survivors of rape, and written beautiful accounts of their struggles. Many of these women were upper class, many were not. Your understanding of women’s agency is so impoverished that you will never understand any of this history.

        Nitin, by a (not-too) clever sleight of hand, you have transferred all your rage regarding the corrupt rich of this country to the corrupt rich women of this country. You may have slightly more credibility if you directed some of your angst at men too. But no, in your narrative, men are victims of women’s blossoming, irresponsible, evil sexuality. Bechare, they just try to protect their manly honour in the face of all this feminine assault, and when they can’t they simply succumb and stick their things in. Sometimes they fantasise about Katrina Kaif while going after the neighbour’s help, but that’s ok. We shouldn’t be sticklers for precision since after all, ALL women are temptresses. Yeah yeah of course you didn’t say any of this, but it wouldn’t take a genius to deduce your subtext, since like I said, its not terribly original. Do you have any clue how medieval you sound? I just hope that some day you will realise that beneath your super-articulate, reasonable, well-intentioned tones, beats the heart of an old and rather nasty misogynist. If men like you are worrying about the honour of women, no thanks. We will manage, with a little help from the many policemen and ordinary men and women who have the decency to be appalled by Mister Reddy’s views, like Shuddha above.

      • January 11, 2012 2:24 AM

        @Sunalini

        I don’t understand how you were able to decode the beats of my heart! :)

        Back to serious stuff:
        Just to be clear, I have no issues with what/why/how women wear. I am not offended if a woman choses to stroll around a bikini or in a burqa, or anything in between.

        Here’s a shorter version of my thoughts:

        There are many better places in the world for people (meaning all men and women) to live, with respect and dignity. The ones having issues with the Indian system can chose to go there and live. If patriotism or loved ones hold them back, they can either choose to start taking actions that will make the country a better place for everyone or “STFU and suffer”.

        Reacting to an idiot, and talking about how a decent person should be appalled by the AP Chief Police, will never solve the issue of rape, or any other problem!

    • bihari permalink
      January 3, 2012 4:58 PM

      nitin might have worded his initial comment poorly but it still deserved a better reading than what you have done. I think what he is saying is – “stupid reddy, bad rapists but you know, we are just not there, so, we got to get our freedoms little by little.”

      I respectfully disagree with nitin. I think in a crazy country like ours in such a crazy world, we gotta take all the crazy leaps that we can. We gotta have F1 on dog littered tracks and we gotta dress the most provocatively that we can. Unless we challenge (and insult) our understanding and sensitivities, there is little hope of “getting there” in even a 1000 years.

      Rapes: at the risk of being called a misogynist rape sympathizer, let me just say – rapes are taken way too more seriously than they ought to be, at least when compared to other injustices (in your face, every day, every moment).

  17. Anuradha Singh permalink
    January 3, 2012 2:39 AM

    Shuddhabrata

    I am sorry I got the spelling of your name wrong in my previous comment. I was way to agitated in replying… :)

  18. January 3, 2012 9:30 AM

    @Mr Mohan Rao: Sir, I’m sure Shuddhabrata Sengupta would be among the last people on the planet to seriously suggest any such course of action. His patently tongue-in-cheek piece is aimed at drawing attention in a dramatic manner to a very real problem.
    I recently saw an excellent Egyptian film, “678” at BIFFES in Bangalore, dealing with the issue of harassment of women. It examines the consequences of taking a rather drastic approach, only to highlight the issues at stake. I dearly hope that film will be bought and shown across India.

    .

  19. January 3, 2012 12:17 PM

    Brilliant!

    And of course, it is for their own benefit, since clearly their sexual urges are beyond their control.

  20. chumee permalink
    January 3, 2012 3:39 PM

    Love the article… :) It made me smile over this sorry topic. Thanks!

  21. amartya permalink
    January 4, 2012 12:05 AM

    An incisive post. I liked it.

    Dear Nitin..the purpose of the post was to foreground the issue of complete sexual desensitization of the police force. It is satirical, and the means proposed are not really meant. And even if they are meant, there is an implicit understanding that they will never be actually realized. Your sense at alarm and outrage is a bit misplaced.
    Especially considering the fact that what this AP top-cop said, on the other hand, was completely heart-felt, and he meant it. The fact that he had the audacity to say such a thing is not because he is a nut-case aberration while others around him harbor no such sentiments at all. It does not make him a rapist, it only reflects a much larger and deeply entrenched patriarchal attitude that exists in society, which cannot come to terms with the idea of a woman comfortable with her own sexuality. I assure you, this top cop here is not the first and only one to have said such a thing.
    The thing is, rape is not just a crime in the legal sense. It is the most virulent manifestation of an entire structural (social, economic,psychological) malaise, one we know as patriarchy. And it is often the most honest, law-abiding citizens who through their everyday actions and perceptions, perpetuate this structure.
    For instance, it is easy to say, a rapist must be punished, no matter who he is. But the little analogy you posit, about the lion in the jungle and the forest guard : here is my problem with it. While a lion lives in the jungle, and can rightfully consume whatever unfortunate person that it chances upon (face it, a lions gotta eat to live)whether the forest guard warns that person or not, the rapist does not have to rape to live. A rapist is not by disposition a rapist, it is because he feels that he can rape and get away with it that he rapes in the first place. So when you have the police telling you that the rapist gets “provoked” by the sight of a woman, the only thing it does is it adds to the rapists conviction in his right to rape.
    Also,Your entire conception of what makes a person upper or lower class is convoluted and needs serious re-thinking.

    @bihari- your last comment does not make you a misogynist rape sympathizer, it only makes you someone who doesn’t really think about what they are saying. Really, for something taken so “seriously”, indeed much more than it ought to be, living in a one-rape-an-hour country does sound strange, especially when apparently only one in 69 rape cases gets reported. Maybe numbers lie. But obviously, we must now measure injustices of different kinds against each other, and make a priority list, right?
    Here’s a thought- try imagining living with the constant fear of being raped, no matter what you do,what you wear, no matter where you go. And imagine seriously.

    • bihari permalink
      January 4, 2012 8:47 AM

      @amartya:
      > we must now measure injustices of different kinds against each other, and make a priority list, right?

      We must. Anything else would be an unscientific way of dealing with a set of social problems.

      The singularly awe-inspiring level of outrage and passion I see when it comes to rapes is obviously unmatched by, let’s say, everything. I think “right to expression” may come in second (at least online). All the non-glamarous sufferings don’t hold a candle to these ;-)

      Thanks for the stats, which I presumed everyone participating in this discussion should already be well aware of. To clarify, I greatly appreciate all the voices I hear online or offline against a pathetic statement like this (of Mr Reddy). Thanks.

  22. Kaushik Satish permalink
    January 4, 2012 12:38 PM

    Nitin – Agree with everything you have said. It’s incredible how in an attempt to strengthen a cause one can so easily undermine or weaken it. This article and many of the ensuing comments are a great exhibit for such an attempt.

  23. January 5, 2012 2:45 PM

    AIPWA Protests AP DGP’s Statements Defending Rape

    AIPWA issued a statement strongly condemning the obnoxious and
    objectionable anti-women statement issued by the Andhra Pradesh DGP
    Dinesh Reddy in a press conference recently, and demanded that Dinesh
    Reddy be dismissed from his post.
    The DGP blamed the rise in rape cases on women wearing ‘fashionable’
    dress. He said the police could do nothing to deter rapists, as long
    as women ‘provoked’ men by wearing ‘fashionable’ clothing. Even rural
    women, he said, provoked men by wearing ‘salwar kameez’ instead of
    ‘traditional’ clothes. He also said that when men ate food that
    created ‘josh’ (excitement), it made them act in ‘naughty’ ways, which
    the police was helpless to stop.
    AIPWA held that these sentiments are a direct defence of and
    encouragement to rapists. The DGP is blaming victims for the crime of
    rape, and seeking to police their choice of clothing. Further, by
    defining rape as ‘naughtiness’ caused by ‘excitement’ or sexual
    response to ‘provocative clothes,’ the DGP is refusing to recognize
    rape as a heinous act of violence on women. Indeed, the DGP’s words
    are reflecting the same mindset as those of rapists themselves. His
    words betray that he himself views women with the gaze of the rapist.
    When the police top brass justify the crime of rape, and in fact speak
    like rapists, then how can women feel safe? In the past, too, top cops
    like KPS Gill have indulged in similar statements. AIPWA demanded that
    police officers who indulge in ‘victim-blaming’ in cases of sexual
    violence on women, must not be allowed to remain in their post.
    AIPWA units in Andhra Pradesh held protests and submitted memorandums
    at several places in AP demanding dismissal of Dinesh Reddy from his
    post as DGP with immediate effect. AIPWA’s 6th National Conference is
    to be held in Vijaywada in AP on 8-9 February. One of the central
    issues in the National Conference will be the rise in sexual violence
    on women, and the role of police and elected representatives in
    encouraging and protecting such crimes.

    [ ML Update A CPI(ML) Weekly News Magazine
    Vol. 15 No. 01 27 DEC 2011 - 02 JAN 2012]

  24. January 7, 2012 5:11 AM

    @Kaushik and @Bihari

    Thanks!

    @Amartya

    I do understand that the AP police chief’s comment was insinuating enough for this author to come up with a satirical post like this. But, blaming the entire bag of apples because of a few rotten ones, thats the thing I disagree with in this article.

    (Rape is a crime, Rapists must be punished)

    ‘Convoluted’ my class divide thoughts may be, but its the truth. There is a huge rich-poor divide that exists in the country, fueling the crime (of any kind) rate. If people refuse to understand the ramifications of such divides, and blame the police for everything, its helps no one.

    Here’s a different analogy, which I think may describe the current situation better:

    Think of the system as the human body, and the understaffed, overly controlled police as a fractured (thigh) bone, pain is a symptom of the fracture (any crime including rape).

    My view: Treat the fractured bone, and give it enough nutrition (fix the laws and the law enforcement system). Once the fracture heals, it takes time and effort (physiotherapy as in, there’ll be a few hits and misses for the new system) for the human to start running (wear modern dresses) without any fear of the symptoms of the fracture.

    Right now, some women are insisting on exercising their right to run, and are complaining when it pains. The AP DGP said “Dont run”, without bothering to explain why. No one is bothering about the fracture.

    • ashakachru permalink
      January 10, 2012 12:54 PM

      nitin represents all the men in india who think that women are weak beings who need their (men’s) protection and advice. they forget that with education and opportunities women have achieved the capabilities required to follow their own priorities and agendas. men in india are still stuck in the mideaval mindset. women want to enjoy life with their own achievements , not through exploiting others,like other’s bodies like men have been doing since ages, to prostitutes. if a woman puts on a nice dress and takes joy in her physical being, it is not necessarily primarily for men’s entertainement, she likes being a woman today! so men instead of feeling jealous must start learning from women, to have fun in life and enjoy life, without putting others down or without exploiting others. if you see a beautiful flower, dont pluck it, enjoy it. this mindset is what the dgp of hyderabad has to learn. and yes women need to become more offensive, so that these old fashioned patriarchs finally give up their dictates. these are words of a 68 year old Indian woman!

  25. January 9, 2012 12:11 PM

    http://www.deccanchronicle.com/blog/mr-dgp-youre-asking-slutwalk-598

    “..I am a girl in the 21st century and I DECIDE what I want to wear. Yes, I dress attractively. Supposing a guy does find me attractive then, does that give the guy a right to go ahead and do anything he wants?
    You justify your statement saying even colleges have dress codes these days. Do you mean to impose a dress code on every girl in the state? Guys can walk bare chested. No problem, of course not, right? Lungis are extremely appropriate? I beg to differ, Mr.DGP.
    It comes down to this. Women have been vulnerable in the society and continue to be. I wish you and your officers could man up and elevate our position a little bit. Take immediate action against all wrongdoers. Let me not be scared of acid bottles and razors.
    Instead, if you tell me you’re going to decide my closet.
    Mr.DGP. You could soon wake up to a Slutwalk in front of your house.”

    [ The writer is a 17-year-old girl from Hyderabad.]

  26. getreal permalink
    January 10, 2012 7:43 PM

    Quite funny the conversations that are going on. Mr Nitin and his gang of supporters and maybe also, his detractors, should look at the statistics. Most of the raped women are raped by people known to them – family, relatives, family friends. In other situations, it is usually a power game. The victim is typically a vulnerable person- low on confidence, runaways, etc. Rape is a power game – that is what has come out of many case studies done on rapists. They only want control.
    All the clothes talk is smoke screen. It has never had anything to do with a rape. CLOTHES is NOT a topic. It’s quite sad that even feminists in India fail to address the real issue. Slutwalk, really?

    And somebody very smart – maybe Mr Bihari – suggested that we take rapes maybe too seriously. Obviously Sir, you are too well informed about sociological and political impact of violence against women. You obviously do understand how it actually hampers the growth of your country – remember, women make almost half the population of this country, in spite of vast scale female infanticide. More violence, no women out of the house, no part in economic activity :P

  27. yasas permalink
    January 11, 2012 2:30 AM

    Awesome solution…!!
    This definitely needs to be popularized…. :) Haters be damned…

  28. Concerned Citizens permalink
    January 14, 2012 5:09 PM

    Here’s a comment (subject to moderation, of course, so we’re waiting to see if it gets published) we’ve left today on some news sites reporting Dinesh Reddy’s pearl of wisdom:
    We wish to express our appreciation and wholehearted support for this exact diagnosis of the problem- men are immediately rendered incapable of human reason and self-control when presented with anything more than an ankle or a collarbone on women (how is it even possible that these normal anatomical features exist on a female body?!). Our sincere request though is that upon having identified the malaise in our society so appropriately, the police force should fulfil their duty in mitigating its damage. In furtherance of the ‘social study’ referred to by the DGP (not at all in desperation and fully displaying his academic bent of mind- kudos to you sir!), we have the following suggestions to offer on possible preventive measures the Home Ministry could take with the aid of our extraordinarily capable police force:
    1. Education and awareness campaigns on the importance of exercising self-control and respecting personal boundaries (if the DGP so wishes, a component on contemporary fashion may be included so that men are not confused into raping women wearing clothes they find unusual);
    2. Dietary regulations be prescribed for men across India to check the consumption of josh-inducing foods, referred to by the Hon’ble DGP as a contributing factor to the prevalence of rape;
    3. A method to register and monitor men with less self-control;
    4. When such a register is maintained, the more depraved men be sent to therapists for professional help and, if required, electroshock therapy (The confidence in the register-maintenance system stems from the resounding success of the Criminal Tribes Act, 1857); and,
    5. A Research and Development wing be constituted to look into the effects of popular fashions on men so the best preventive measures may be prescribed.
    Of course, in consideration of the natural and undoubtedly uncontrollable instincts of men that cause them to commit rape, we understand that the success of these measures cannot be guaranteed 100%. If they do fail, we suppose that the only way to prevent rape may be castration where the depravity is of irremediable proportions.
    We hope our suggestions are considered by you and your department. We will send you more as and when they occur to us.
    Yours Sincerely,
    In Solidarity,
    Concerned Citizens against Rape

  29. January 1, 2013 12:28 AM

    A year on, after this article was published:

    – Satyamevajayate (on tv) opened many eyes to the occurrences of rapes and molestation

    – A ghastly rape in Delhi opened many suppressed wounds

    – The problem (police/judicial) is yet to be addressed (with any reforms), and many innocent lives continue to be at risk. The issue of “modern dresses”, “chowmein” (euphimisms for looking away from the problem) etc continues

    – The knee jerk reactions by the public to castrate the perpetrators (or castrate those using euphemisms like dinesh reddy), mainly to quench their thirst to avenge a ghastly crime with another, continue, without sparing a thought to fix the law enforcement system

    PS: I stand by my comments and I think this post and its comments even now picture the reality in India after what happened to the Delhi girl, who died an unnecessary death, because reforms take a backseat, giving “castration” the driving seat.

  30. Mike Martlet permalink
    June 2, 2013 11:32 PM

    The problem seems to be one of cultural upbringing connected with exposure to sexuality in society in general.

    This kind of declared “uncontrollable urge” by the male gender was a feature of western society about 100 years ago too. But then after the First World War (wars of this nature are always catalysts for change), due to the men being conscripted into the armed forces and shipped overseas, women proved that they were capable of doing men’s jobs. The 1920s saw the newly emancipated independent women take charge of their own lives. Part of this was for women to challenge the traditional stereotype of covered modesty and decide who they would accept from a pool of males attracted by them; as hemlines rose men got used to being sexually aroused on a daily basis.

    All of this continued throughout the 30s and into the next World War where even more women proved that they were as good as men in the workplace. After the war it was necessary to re-employ the men who had risked their lives and fought for a ‘free and better world’ and women were sold the idea that being a housewife and mother was just as important as being the “bread winner” and a new term “Domestic Science” was introduced to convince them of this fact. Hemlines dropped but heels rose and necklines plunged, so although there was a new less boyish femininity now afoot, the sexual attraction continued apace culminating in first the miniskirt and then the micro skirt by the very late 1960’s, a time that also Ushered in the Pill for everyone (married or not) and the Women’s Liberation Movement.

    After this length of time of a heightened sexuality and widely available ‘free love’ in society, most western men were almost inured to ‘normal’ sexual attraction and regularly became sexually aroused throughout the day with each arousal subsiding almost as fast as it had begun, – and without frustration of any kind. This then became the norm and as such was entirely controllable by the majority.

    Yes there are western men who still rape, but they are in a minority and are generally what we would call ‘losers’. Men who can’t accept women as equals, can’t communicate with them, do not have regular sexual relationships with them, and are so unused to being sexually aroused that they cannot control themselves, – such men should be castrated.

    Your problem is that despite the images in your ancient temples that point to a greater level of sexual excitement, thanks to the British Raj, you seem to have adopted the west’s unhealthy and now outmoded Victorian attitudes towards sex. You need to throw this away and get back to your Hindu roots. Your young men are not exposed to sex enough in their adolescence, otherwise it would become the norm and thus more controllable.

    Please don’t suggest as some feminists do that men shouldn’t be attracted to women visually at all; if we weren’t, then in a free society where arranged marriages are unacceptable, none of us would be here at all! But then such extreme fringe feminists are rarely heterosexual anyway and having no investment in future generations have no interest in such matters.

    And no, I didn’t suggest that it was the attractor’s fault either, I have suggested that it is the cover-uppers’ fault in part for not exposing growing children to a more equal exposure of male and female bodies and the males’ fault for not accepting women as equals and learning to control their urges.

    Best wishes,

    Mike

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