Karela Fry

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Is UP more prone to rape than the rest of India?

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In the last few days we have had the spectacle of Uma Bharti re-entering the BJP and declaring that her first campaign would be for the safety of women in UP. Meanwhile the congress, under heavy fire for corruption and increasing lawlessness in Congress-ruled states has also decided to take on the case of safety of women in UP. The victims of any crime as serious as rape are worth compassionate consideration, just as it is important to bring the criminals to justice. However, one wonders whether this is really what the politicians want. One also wonders who will take up the case for the safety of women in the rest of the country.

Not the media. Its attention is riveted to the nonsense emanating from politicians. The HT breathlessly reports on a Monday:

In a sudden and unexplained spurt in crime in Uttar Pradesh, five fresh cases of rape were reported since Sunday. On Sunday, a 35-year-old woman was allegedly raped and burnt alive in Etah while a Dalit teenager was raped and killed in Gonda district. Another 12-year-old girl was raped and murdered in Sitapur on Monday.

Reports of rape also came from Firozabad and Kanpur.

This chain of incidents triggered angry outbursts from opposition parties, with the Samajwadi Party dubbing the state “balatkari pradesh (rapists’ state)”. Party president Akhilesh Yadav, from whose parliamentary constituency one such incident had been reported earlier, demanded a high-level probe into the incident.

That last para kind of gives the game away. The object of attention is not crimes and their victims, as it should be, but politics, as usual.

Statistics reported across India last year show that there is one rape reported every 34 minutes. If these occurred in proportion to the population then there should have been one rape reported every 206 minutes in UP, ie, 14 rapes reported in the last 48 hours. Only one third of these made it to the attention of the press. The media not only did not investigate and bring to light unreported cases of rape, it also swept under the carpet cases which would have been reported.

Why does the media not report on the other cases of rape in UP, and in the rest of the country? The clear answer is that the media is not interested in people. It is interested in politics and politicians. It gets its crime statistics from politicians. And we know that politicians are not to be trusted. Where does that put the media?

The unfortunate story here is how the media’s incompetence actually harms the cause of law and order.


Written by Arhopala Bazaloides

June 21, 2011 at 3:58 am

Posted in India, media

Tagged with , ,

One Response

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  1. […] one might be led to estimate that there would be about 7 such cases per day in UP. As we know from earlier reports, the numbers are substantially […]

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