Damned if you do, damned if you don't.
The recent case of a Kerala MLA calling a nun a 'prostitute' and hinting that she must have been enjoying getting 'raped' since she reported it so late, shows that in cases of sexual exploitation, sometimes women have to face the shame and blame, both.
For centuries, women's 'integrity' has been linked with their sexuality.
So much, that we have now reached a point where a lot of women don't even talk about being sexually exploited because they are scared about what the society will say about them.
It will raise questions on why they were out at a certain hour, wearing certain clothes, with a certain person.
Let me back these arguments, with an example.
When a woman named Varnika Kundu shared her experience of being stalked by the Haryana BJP chief’s son Vikas Barala, through a Facebook post, some people asked her this:
'What was she doing outside, so late at night?'
To which she replied:
Why should I stop living my life the way I want to? And why am I being asked by some people as to what I was doing out late at night? My parents know where I am. And, people who ask me this question should ask themselves: was I harassing someone? No. Those men were.
Those. Men. Were.
Why is that so tough to understand?
Obviously, that is just one side of the story. If women somehow manage to overcome the fear and talk about the disturbing experiences, they are asked- 'why did you not complain before?'
Well, maybe because you haven't created a safe environment for that.
Maybe because you call them 'prostitutes'.
Or, maybe because your ministers go on rallies and say:
Ladke, ladke hain… galti ho jaati hai.
Those were actual words by former UP Chief Minister, Mulayam Singh Yadav, who further added:
Ladkiyan pehle dosti karti hain. Ladke-ladki mein matbhed ho jaata hai. Matbhed hone ke baad usse rape ka naam de deti hain. Ladko se galti ho jaati hai. Kya rape case mein phasi di jayegi?
This translates to:
First, girls develop friendship with boys. Then when differences occur, they level rape charges. Boys make mistakes. Will they be hanged for rape?
One of the biggest political figures of the country is asking you, 'will they be hanged for rape?'
THIS is why women don't report rape.
So, to all the morons who ask why women don't complain about being sexually assaulted, I have one answer: