oppn parties Bulandshahr Gang Rape: Insensitive Samajvadi Leaders Have Repeatedly Failed UP Women

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Bulandshahr Gang Rape: Insensitive Samajvadi Leaders Have Repeatedly Failed UP Women

By Sunil Garodia

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Editor-in-Chief of indiacommentary.com. Current Affairs analyst and political commentator. Writes for a number of publications.
The Samajvadi Party is so anti-women that it is a mystery how even a single woman votes for it. In 2014, its supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav had said that “boys will be boys and they commit mistakes” while commenting on the Shakti Mills rape case in Mumbai. Elaborating further at a rally in Moradabad Mulayam said that “girls first befriend boys. Then differences crop up. After that, girls accuse boys of rape. Boys make mistakes. So should we hang them for rape?” It must go down in history as the most stupid and convoluted defence of rape and rapists.

Now, after the Bulandshahr gang rape, his trusted lieutenant Azam Khan has alleged that it is a conspiracy hatched by the opposition to defame their government. Khan said that "We need to investigate whether this is a conspiracy by opponents who want to defame the government. For votes, people can stoop to any level. There can be a Muzaffarnagar, a Shamli and Kairana...why not this? For power, politicians can murder people, trigger riots, kill innocent people, so the truth has to be found out.”

People like Mulayam Singh Yadav and Azam Khan have no idea what rape is or the trauma a girl goes through during and after the incident. In fact, Mulayam is on record as having said that gang rape is not possible as rape by more than one person is impractical. He said that "often if one person commits rape, four people are named in the complaint. Four people are named for rape, can it be possible? It is not practical. They probably say one was watching...another was there... If there are four brothers, then all four are named." This also showed he had absolutely no idea what gang rape was. One shudders to think that such an ignoramus is a frontline politician in India.

Coming back to Bulandshahr, Azam Khan has no idea about what goes on in UP despite being a minister in the state government. The Bawariya gang, some of whose members are alleged to be involved in the recent gang rape there, has been active for a long time. It has a long history of looting, rapes and murder. Another gang rape just 12 days before the recent one has come to light, maybe committed by other or same members of the Bawariya gang. Khan is trying to hide his government’s inefficiency in not being able to neutralize a notorious gang that has terrorized nearby villages and vehicles on the highway running through the territory by alleging opposition conspiracy behind the incident.

There is a self-serving reason for what Samajvadi Party leaders say. Just days before Mulayam made the “gang rape being impractical” remark, all-India statistics about women’s safety had placed UP as the state with the highest number of gang rapes. Wasn’t Mulayam’s remark then was a subtle pointer to UP cops not to register any case of gang rape, for gang rape was “impractical” if ‘Netaji” said so? Now, with state elections on the horizon, Azam Khan has taken the lead to protect the government by insulting the raped women in saying that the incident might have been staged by the opposition.

Such crass insensitivity about rape at the top level of the UP government means that the bureaucracy and the police there get the temerity to deny such incidents and refuse to register FIR’s when the victims approach them. It is no secret that the rule book in such cases (especially the Supreme Court guidelines for helping victims of rape cases) is never followed. Many UP police stations do not have a woman constable on duty round the clock. Samajvadi Party has failed the women of UP and it is the biggest reason it might be voted out in the 2017 elections.