Death for Standing Up Against Sexual Harassment of Daughters. What’s the Value of a Woman’s Life in India?

Gender

Death for Standing Up Against Sexual Harassment of Daughters. What’s the Value of a Woman’s Life in India?

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

The horrors of crimes directed toward women in India are unending. In a tragic incident from Uttar Pradesh, a 55-year-old woman was beaten to death by four people after she tried to stop them from sexually harassing her daughters. The incident took place in Nara village in Muzaffarnagar.

According to the complaint lodged by the family members, it is alleged that the four neighbours were harassing the young women of the family and the mother stood up against the harassers. On Monday evening, the accused entered the house and attacked her.

Sarita Devi was severely beaten by the four men. She was rushed to the hospital where she was declared dead. The body has been sent for a post-mortem.

The police raided the residence of the four accused to arrest them but they weren’t present at home. Mansurpur police station SHO K P Singh said a case was registered against four people — Akash, Gopi, Binendra, and Rajesh — who are absconding.

The police have filed a case under section 304 (Punishment for culpable homicide not amounting to murder) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). A manhunt is on to nab the accused.

In a similar incident in September, an elderly woman was brutally beaten up by a neighbour for objecting to eve-teasing in Ghaziabad. The allegation was that the accused had passed lewd comments against her daughter. When the woman went to confront the accused identified as Sunil Chaudhary, he got agitated and beat her up.

The video of the incident had gone viral, and it was shocking how bystanders didn’t do anything to help.

The law and order system seems to be broken, and shocking crimes against women are coming to light with alarming regularity. It is time for the UP administration to get its act together, else “Beti Bachao” is now turning into a warning instead of a heartwarming slogan.

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