Two recent incidents have led me to think if we have started going overboard in our eagerness to ensure justice to our womenfolk. Have we started getting satisfied with allegations only without caring for the necessity of proof and evidence? Have we not started hanging people before they have been proved guilty?
The first is the incident of Badaun in UP in May this year. Two fourteen-year old girls were found hanging from a tree in a village. Some youth of the village were accused of raping the girls and then hanging them. The gruesome pictures of the hanging bodies shook the nation, leading to demands for swift action. The alleged perpetrators including two policemen were arrested amidst nationwide uproar. Now, after several months, CBI has concluded that this was a case of suicide. No evidence of rape or murder has been found.
The second is the case of alleged molestation of two sisters in a Haryana bus. Channels played the visuals of the girls beating the alleged culprits with belt. The girls were hailed as role models for women. Haryana Government announced rewards for them. The Army made it clear that it had no place for two of the alleged culprits who were on course to join the army. But soon came the statements of some women who were travelling in the same bus, stating that there was no molestation.
The two incidents stress the need for some restraint in such matters. It will be too much to expect from media that they would not report such incidents and allegations in a big way. But can they not highlight the fact that the allegations need to be established? Can the media not give the other side of the picture as well.
Whether made by men or women, all allegations are not true. Both men and women may have motives behind making allegations. We all are human beings and open to human failings and frailties. Crimes against women must be severely dealt with. Gone are the days when these were hushed up due to false sense of shame, money or muscle power. But in trying to deal with one injustice, we must not commit another.