Rape in Kashmir by Indian army personnel or in Delhi by a juice-seller, is same. There is no justification for rape. However, in the “world’s largest democracy” India the system of justice is such a failure that it leaves victims longing for justice. Most of the victims never see the culprits punished as per the law. But in a place like Kashmir or Manipur, it is the law (AFSPA) itself which gives impunity to the rapists. In May 2009, two girls, Asiya Jan (17) and Neelofer Jan (22)were allegedly abducted, gang raped and murdered on the intervening night of May 29 and 30, 2009 at Bongam, Shopian district of Jammu and Kashmir. As per the locals and the family it was Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) men who abducted the girls and then raped and murdered. The state chief minister, Omar Abdullah’s immediate reaction was there has been no rape. Later, the government set up a commission which too couldn’t find the culprits. The whole investigation process by this or that agency was a mere show, as per the family. There were huge protests. Nobody was booked. In the capital city of India, a 23-year-old girl was raped and it started large protests. The family members of Asiya and Neelofer took out a protest sit-in in solidarity with the girl who was raped in Delhi and also to remind the government to deliver justice for the two girls. The Majlis-e-Mushawarat, a group formed in highlighting the Shopian double-rape murder, condemned the Delhi rape and also extended solidarity to the family and the people who were protesting in India.
By Raja Ishfaq Lateef