India Uncut

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Sunday, April 24, 2005

Broken piano

Here's a revelation about how Sunil More, who raped a 17-year-old girl inside a police chowky at Marine Drive a couple of days ago, got into the police force in the first place: "His father Atmaram was also a cop in the Mumbai police department. He is said to have died about nine years ago from a stomach ailment. On compassionate grounds, the police department offered the job to More."

So the fellow didn't even get into the police force on merit, but on "compassionate grounds". After this, according to Mid Day, he "quickly became notorious for his arrogance, laziness, and propensity for getting drunk," and "received five official reprimands for poor conduct". He didn't lose his job because "his brother – a constable in the crime branch – would placate More’s seniors every time he got himself into trouble, giving him free rein to do as he pleased".

The latest on this crime is that More has, predictably, denied the rape even as doctors have found prima facie evidence of it, and the chowky where the crime happened has been removed because, in the words of the police, "if the public damages it further in rage, it will amount to tampering of evidence".

The most bizarre development, though, is this: "Cop wives say they'll adopt rape victim". The wives of three top cops have offered to "adopt" the victim, and one of them has said: "I have two daughters; she will be my third child. We’ll do everything possible for her so that she can start leading a normal life again."

This reminds of of those Hindi films where a rapist's way of doing recompense to a rape victim is to marry her. No one bothers to ask the girl what she wants; she was treated as an object while being raped, and she is treated as an object afterwards. "Hey, we broke the piano. Let's make up for it by repairing the piano."

Well, the piano may not want your sanctimony, ladies. Instead, use your influence with your husbands to make sure that justice is done, and that the conditions that enabled the rape are removed from the police force. Such as an unqualified man being given a job on "compassionate grounds". Such as an incompetent policeman retaining his job despite "his arrogance, laziness, and propensity for getting drunk".

Also read: Uma Mahadevan-Dasgupta's fine post, "Marine Drive, Saturday morning".
amit varma, 1:35 PM| write to me | permalink | homepage

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