Certain things in life hit you so hard, you become numb for some time. Much has been said and discussed about Nirbhaya and the Mumbai girl. People who know me closely are aware of where I stand on these issues and what my opinions are. Though I actively participate on some of the discussions on Facebook, I have never discussed it openly here. Some times, a small spark is enough to ignite a large fire.
There was a blog past that went viral last week, an apparent first hand experience by soemone on what happened in broad daylight in Manesar, NCR. The post has since been removed, I’m sure the poor guy must have been intimidated by all the attention that it garnered. The gist of the post can be found here. Something that this person mentioned really got me thinking,
“I wonder if any brother, father, friend, and a good person can ever save any girl surrounded by so many people, in this state of mind when they are drunk, full of weapons, roaming around in groups, and UNEDUCATED shouting WE ARE THE SYSTEM. No one can and may be that’s why system is built. And that day it was a reminder, how broken our system is.”
A good friend of mine shared this on his wall on FB and he rightly said,
“Education has nothing to do with it. Have we not seen educated IT crowd using Ma Behen swearwords?”
Our opinions on most of these issues are similar and I have always believed that education is something that is beyond what you get in schools. It is more of what you learn at home, from observing others, from what you assimilate from the books that you read, the conversations that you listen to, the values that define you, the definition is far beyond its conventional expectation.
One of the responses that he received from an ‘educated’ person really rattled me.
“there is a difference between an IT Guy using Maa Bahan and these people. However drunk an IT Guy is, he can never think of raping a girl, mugging people in broad day light. If you see all the incidents, Nirbahaya, mumbai rape case and even in this case…all the people involved were illiterate…I think the root cause is growing class difference in India. By class I mean their education level and financial status. This problem is not going to go…the mind set of the people needs to be changed and that change can be brought only by bridging this gap which I am afraid going to take ages.”
My reaction was…well….typically me,
” How is an IT guy using maa behen different from an illiterate guy? More shame on the educated ones, I would say. You are sure educated guys do not commit any heinous crime? Or is it that you do not read newspapers? You are right, maybe they do not do it as a gang and not in broad daylight. You knew about a Nirbhaya or the ‘Mumbai – girl’ as you call her. Have you heard about the harassment – both mental and physical – that happens in many a home that is headed by the ‘IT guys’ ? The culprits in these two cases got caught because of that very fact. If it was someone highly connected, do you think they would have been brought to justice so easily?
“However drunk an IT guy is, he can never think of a raping a girl” , Seriously? Have you heard of date drugs, spiked drinks etc? Are you saying it is ‘these’ illiterate guys who use it?”
I knew there was no point in continuing the discussion when he responded…
“Stop over reacting and first decide which problem you want to discuss…and speak about the solution not about the problem…stop sending your kids to school if you think education has nothing to do with it”
….and I closed it with a short comment,
“If you think education is what you get out of school, I rest my case. Nothing more to say.”
This happened a few days ago, but the questions that it raised still refuses to let go.
What message are we giving our kids and to society at large? That all the problems are caused by a certain section of the society only? That as long as you have a degree added to your name, you are entitled to talk any which way you want, because, “hey, you know what I mean”? What gives me the right to look down on and pass judgement on someone else?
I still believe we got to know about these cases and the perpetrators were caught fast and sentenced because they belonged to this so called lower strata of society. This is not to belittle the brutality of the crimes, not even for a moment. As a daughter, sister, mother, friend and a woman, I cannot even start to think of the trauma that these girls would have gone through. For each Nirbhaya whom we know of, how many other unknown scared girls would be there who are tortured day after day and specifically by the so called educated class? How cases are diluted just because they are either ‘connected’ or the family is scared because it will affect their ‘reputation’? All the while, the culprits still jaunting around free and taunting their victims like this
And what has schools got to do with it?