It is quite easy to gauge the depths of hypocrisy and insensitivity that has got rooted in the society. One need not be an erudite in sociological behaviour of this gregarious creature called man. And succinctly the visual media in Kerala is agog with the news that tells the tale.
There are, as of now, two or three cases of alleged abuse of girls who are said to be minors.And they are being brandished day and night on the local mallu channels and their woeful stories narrated with new revelations to the utter moral outrage of the morally conditioned Keralites. This was not the first time that such sensational story of newsworthiness that is well cherished by the general public has surfaced in the State. Many instances of abuse of hapless girls have been reported and many big wigs and persons of repute in the social and cultural fields have been accused. Many have wriggled out by the virtue of their clout and wealth .There was also a very poignant and moving film that was made by the director Lal Jose, (Acthanurnagatha Vedu), which I think can be loosely translated as “A father’s tale of woes”.
The investigation goes on-collection of evidences for which the victims are paraded around the country in police vehicles; the thronging of people to all such places with facial expressions of unrestrained orgasmic pleasure at the sight of the victims, (whose faces are generally covered with some fabric). And then the sensational names of the alleged men who abused them and the TV news reporters stating in a tone of immense achievement that the girl was repeatedly abused by around one hundred men in matter of a month.All this adds much value to the news cast. As a master coup in adding spice and flavour to the news, the father of one of the alleged victims has been accused and arrested for parading his daughter to many men as if she was ware.
The alibi seems quite intriguing on many accounts.
Firstly, it seems quite beyond plausibility that these girls being incommunicado or were unable to visibly inform someone while they were being shunted from one destination to the other, that they were being abused or sexually used without their consent. And this as it is alleged was perpetrated on one victim, by around one hundred men in a month’s time. Medically questionable perhaps! I wonder, Kerala society is not a feudalistic citadel like some of the north and central Indian societies, for women to be absolutely subjugated and unable to communicate. There certainly must have been some means in the course of the alleged atrocities, for these girls to come out.
Secondly it is hard to believe that these men were all quite naiveté and foolish and some who are allegedly wealthy and influential ,chose to vent their wild urges on girls who were below the age of majority and brought to them in circumstances that were questionable. Unless it points to some perverted evolution of preferences of Malayli men folks.
There seems to be a bigger side to these sleazy and disturbing tales! As it is held by courts in all countries that subscribe to civilised jurisprudence, non consensual sex even if it is between husband and wife can be seen as determined by force or coercion and defined as rape. Fair enough! That will nail all the men folks who show these kinds of uncontrolled sexual aggression. And violating a minor girl automatically falls under various section of the criminal penal code. So unless the witnesses or the victims turn hostile or indifferent it is certain that the accused will be convicted.
But still, larger questions remain unanswered. How is it possible that in an open society with various communication channels, that teen aged girls doses not send SOS but passively wait till scores of men violated them? What becomes of these alleged victims? Not much light has been thrown on that. Though, a victim who once even got a senior politician in the State running for cover later turned hostile and settled quietly for the sudden flow of largesse that came to her.
Does these stories point to the insatiable excursions that men make outside wedlock? Has religious edicts and commandments failed pathetically in reigning in mans sexual urges? Have the laws of the land, archaic as they are, failed to curb rape and molestation of women?
Let me make a submission here in this regard, though it may invite raised eyebrows from many puritanical sections. The laws that we have are archaic and money can change course of any event that is considered amoral or unlawful. Society like to exult in sleaze and news of philandering. The crowd that the incidences mentioned earlier attract are because of so. Nirvana in morality is the consolation often grabbed by people with missed opportunities. Courts often are loaded and biased against women, that a misdemeanour in an early instance can be raked up to effectively throw out an allegation of rape or molestation, while the accomplished philandering of a man may be ignored to his benefit. The society’s moral outrage and the law that illegalise paid sex are archaic and nuisance. Legalising paid and consensual sex, though it may not greatly help in reducing instances of rape and molestations or attempts, they can certainly avoid the need to parade a woman through the streets and locations where the police claim that she has been taken to and abused. And that parade is bigger abuse than any physical act on her with or without her consent ,with or without gratification and consideration!