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Jon Coffey Ms. Burchi II Form Cultural Studies May 19, 2013 5-Year-Old Girl in Delhi Raped: Not just an Indian Issue On April 21, 2013 feminist demonstrators took to the streets of New Delhi near the major police station in order to protest for better police response and criminal investigation surrounding the brutal rape and murder of a five year-old girl that Friday.[1] The day after the rape, the police took into custody a 22-year-old garment factory worker who would later be found guilty of the felony. [2] The crime was devastating to the family of the young girl and ignited a women’s led grassroots movement in India to protest for tougher legislation and enforcement of laws to crackdown on rape and other forms of sexual harassment and violence that are rampant in India. This one incident was not just lightning in a bottle; there have been numerous cases of similar events all over the sub-continent and world. The issue of violence against women, specifically rape is not exclusively an Indian one, it is a global concern, one that plagues even the most developed nations including our own. An incident of the same type occurred in 2009 as well with another 5-year-old girl. The body of a 5-year-old girl who went missing the day before was found in a lake outside of an abandoned factory.[3] The child was presumed to be raped then drowned in the lake that her body was retrieved out from. [4] Ironically, much of the same events happen in United States, presenting themselves in different ways entirely. In the census of 1994 in they did a sexual abuse section and the results were staggering. In Alabama, by the age of 18, 38% of girls said that they had been sexually abused by someone and 22% reported that it was not an isolated incident and was reoccurring.[5] These problems still exist and are not going to go away over night. The same events that are happening in India are happening in America today to less of a degree in some cases, but in others to the same degree.[6] In 2006, Jessica Lunsford, a nine-year-old girl was kept prisoner by John Couey for three days in his trailer only 150 yards from where she lived.[7] After she was raped repeatedly, she was buried alive, hiding the crime from the people of the small trailer neighborhood. A new law has been adopted by 17 states already to increase severity of punishment for rape and murder crimes ensuing this horrific event.[8] Because of the new American laws pertaining to severity of punishment in rape felons, rape has gone down since 2006. Indian Parliament could easily decrease the annual rape rate just by reforming the laws about punishment of rape and murder.[9] The logic behind the recent reforms is, the potential offenders know the severity and do not risk the consequences. Another and possibly most astonishing case of rape and murder in India was that of a teenage girl in the middle of September of 2012. She was taken by four grown men, thrown into the trunk of a car and kept imprisoned in an outhouse for five days, naked, no food or water and was repeatedly rape.[10] In rural parts of India relatively close to New Delhi, rapes are common and increasing, but the incidents do not draw attention of the people very much.[11] The recent rape spike in India has been quite astonishing in severity. Girls under the age of five are having their lives cut short by rape and brutal murders. But the problems aren’t just present in the slums and shanties of New Delhi and Calcutta but globally. America has faced these issues and somewhat recently reformed the


laws to decrease them.[12] But it is pivotal for these reforms to be adopted. With a population ranking only second to China, for the world’s largest democracy it may be of interest to punish more effectively for such crimes as the numbers are greater, being more than three times the size of the population of the United States.[13] Bibliography "5-Year-Old Raped, Killed." The Statesman, Jan 02, 2009. http://search.proquest.com/docview/284467605?accountid=12012. "5 Year-Old-Girl Killed After being Raped in Dumka." United News of India, Mar 21, 2012. http://search.proquest.com/docview/929160974?accountid=12012 . Gardiner, Harris. "Rape of 5-Year-Old Girl Sets Off New Furor in India." New York Times, Apr 21, 2013. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1330913321? accountid=12012. "Girl, 5, Abducted, Raped in India." Sunday Star - Times, Apr 21, 2013. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1330869322?accountid=12012. Nirmala, George. "Protests Erupt Against Police After 5-Year-Old Raped in India." Honolulu Star - Advertiser, Apr 21, 2013. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1349564443?accountid=12012. Perlroth, Nicole. 2012. 3 child rapes cast chill on popular social app. New York Times, Jun 13. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1020035767?accountid=12012 . Thompson, Paul. in Homosassa. 2006. “The rape and murder of this little girl now means NO repeat sex offenderwill ever get a soft sentence - sadly it's only in America”. The Sun, Jun 17. http://search.proquest.com/docview/370844282? accountid=12012. “U.S. finds heavy toll of rapes on young. 1994.” New York Times (1923-Current File), Jun 23. http://search.proquest.com/docview/109325747?accountid=12012 Denyer, Simon. 2013. In rural india, rapes are common, but justice for victims is not. News India - Times, Jan 18. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1284113328? accountid=12012. [1] Harris Gardiner, "Rape of 5-Year-Old Girl Sets Off New Furor in India." New York Times, Apr 21, 2013. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1330913321? accountid=12012. [2] Ibid, Gardiner. [3] "5-Year-Old Raped, Killed," The Statesman, Jan 02, 2009. http://search.proquest.com/docview/284467605?accountid=12012. [4] Ibid, Statesman. [5] “U.S. finds heavy toll of rapes on young. 1994.” New York Times (1923-Current File), Jun 23. http://search.proquest.com/docview/109325747?accountid=12012. [6] Ibid, Heavy Toll. [7] Paul Thompson, in Homosassa. 2006. The rape and murder of this little girl now means NO repeat sex offenderwill ever get a soft sentence - sadly it's only in america. The Sun, Jun 17. http://search.proquest.com/docview/370844282?accountid=12012. [8] Ibid, Thompson. [9] Ibid, Thompson. [10] Simon Denyer,. 2013. “In rural india, rapes are common, but justice for victims is not,” News India - Times, Jan 18. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1284113328?accountid=12012. [11] Ibid, Denver [12] Ibid, Statesmen [13] George Nirmala,, "Protests Erupt Against Police After 5-Year-Old Raped in India." Honolulu


Star - Advertiser, Apr 21, 2013. http://search.proquest.com/docview/1349564443? accountid=12012.


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