Does not abuse of these women count?

Only because the police force represents the establishment, should we ignore how some cops, especially female, are treated by civilians? In Bareillly, Uttar Pradesh, men have been calling up the police stations and harassing women cops with sexually provocative comments.

This reveals a certain cockiness, besides a problem with attitude. It does not help that this report refers to the men as "desperate romeos" and the sexual harassment they indulge in as "dirty talk".

A frustrated police department has now blocked the SIM cards of 90 mobile phone owners. In October alone, more than 1,738 such calls were made. Many among those, knowing full well that the calls were being recorded, spoke such obscenity that the women cops were forced to run to their seniors for help.

Why does the report make these female cops sound like 'damsels in distress'? They have a legitimate right to complain about abuse at the workplace, whether it is by their colleagues or callers. Had a male policeman been threatened, he too might have approached his seniors.

The CO (Circle Officer) added that there were occasions when the woman cop would just hand the phone over to a male colleague, but the intrepid caller would roundly abuse the male cop, too, and threaten him with dire consequences.

Clearly, the Indian media may talk about using terms like "survivor" instead of "victim" for those who've suffered sexual violence, but has no concept of how to respect the rights of women without such sound bite crutches.


Should the fight against 'love jihad' be restricted to Hindu-Muslim alliances? Why are moderate Hindus and liberals not taking up intercaste 'honour' crimes?

Those news items are relegated to inside pages and rarely get any prominence, that too only if there is a hook to make them saleable. Meanwhile, incidents such as these continue to take place:

A Vijayawada-based man was arrested for allegedly raping his teenaged daughter over several months as punishment for having an affair with a youth from a different caste, after the victim and her mother approached the police...

"Initially, his intention was to punish her with that cruel deed. Subsequently, he developed an interest in her and went on repeating the same for almost a year", said PI (Nunna rural) Vara Prasad, who is probing the case.

A Appa Rao started out with vengeance, revenge against another caste person. There were no political ideologies involved, which is often the case. Do they matter less if there is no 'love jihad'-like catchphrase attached to them? Is there any sympathy for his teenage daughter, about her future and the love she lost?

If the Sanghis are hanging on to the phrase to demonise it, those battling against it have also made it into a business franchise. As there is a steady stream at the doors to partake of it, they realise it makes little sense to diversify into what stares them in the face by the same perpetrators — caste divisiveness and anti-Dalit sentiments. Should someone find an appropriate title, maybe our concerned liberals might join the bandwagon.


Also my piece on love, jihad and politics