BBC’s documentary on ‘India’s Daughter’ by Leslee Udwin has gone viral within few hours of it being uploaded on Youtube and has created an outburst in India from various sections.
The documentary is about the horrific night of December 16th 2012 in Delhi when Nirbhaya (Jyoti Singh), a medical student was brutally abused by six men in a moving bus. The whole incident created an uproar like never before throughout the nation. The city came out on the streets the very next day in protest of the horrific incident that shook and questioned the tolerance level of every woman, the conscience of every person. Nirbhaya succumbed to death on 29th December 2012 due to multi organ failure and trauma. The 4 main convicts Mukesh Singh, Akshay Thakur, Pawan Gupta and Vinay Sharma of the case have been sentenced to death. The fifth one Ram Singh allegedly committed suicide while the juvenile who happened to be the most gruesome was sent to juvenile justice home.
It’s been more than two years to that incident, but the pain, the agony, the shock, the horror is still afresh and unforgotten. It’s not like people weren’t aware of such incidents before or it never happened before. It was the utter brutality of the incident that shook the very core of human conscience. It was an awakening to all our sleeping conscience that had numbed and turned a blind eye to everything wrong happening in our society in the name of culture, patriarchy, stereotypes and selfish reasons.
The documentary showcases some shocking statements from one of the main convicts Mukesh Singh (bus driver) and the defense lawyers of the rapists and their families that would leave you appalled. On the other hand it also has some very noteworthy comments and words from the parents of the victim and Leila Seth, former chief justice. Here’s a list of combined quotes from the convicted, his lawyer along with the ones which talks about the core issue.
Mukesh Singh (Rape Convict, Bus Driver)
“A decent girl won’t roam around at nine o’clock at night. A girl is far more responsible for rape than a boy”
“When being raped, she shouldn’t fight back. She should just be silent and allow the rape. Then they’d have dropped her off after ‘doing her’, and only hit the boy”
“The death penalty will make things even more dangerous for girls. Now when they rape, they won’t leave the girl like we did. They will kill her. Before, they would rape and say, ‘Leave her, she won’t tell anyone.’ Now when they rape, especially the criminal types, they will just kill the girl. Death.”
Ram and Mukesh Singh’s Parents
“We have no idea what did or didn’t happen”
“All the fault is of those 4 guys Pawan, Vinay, Akshay and that juvenile”
“Only the juvenile knows, others were not present there”
M.L Sharma (Defense Lawyer To The Convicts)
“In our society, we never allow our girls to come out from the house after 6:30 or 7:30 or 8:30 in the evening with any unknown person”
“You are talking about man and woman as friends. Sorry, that doesn’t have any place in our society. We have the best culture. In our culture, there is no place for a woman.”
AP Singh (Defense Lawyer To The Convicts)
“If my daughter or sister engaged in pre-marital activities and disgraced herself and allowed herself to lose face and character by doing such things, I would most certainly take this sort of sister or daughter to my farmhouse, and in front of my entire family, I would put petrol on her and set her alight.”
Puneeta Devi (Convict Akshay Thakur’s wife)
“Am I not a daughter of this country? Don’t I have the right to live? Will there be no rapes in Delhi? Will you hang all rapists?”
“A woman is protected by her husband. If he is dead, who will protect her and for whom will she live? I also don’t want to live. Priyanshu, my son, he understands nothing now, I will also strangle him to death. What else can I do?”
Leila Seth (Former Chief Justice, Member Of Rape Review Committee)
“The rape was extremely brutal and it is something very unusual to find that you not only rape the girl, but put an iron rod and take out her entrails. This is something I can’t understand. What kind of human beings are these, who do something like that.”
“The constitution provides for equality, it doesn’t happen because the men don’t allow it to happen and they feel that they have hold on women and it’s also because of the historical tradition of patriarchy which has been over the years embedded into men and also women ”
Mother Of Jyoti Singh (Nirbhaya)
“When there’s an attack or a crime, the girl is blamed- she should not go out, shouldn’t roam around so late or wear such clothes. It’s the boys who should be accused and asked why they do this? They shouldn’t do this.”
“The surgeon doctor said- I have been practicing for 20 years and we have not come across a case like this. The system by which the human body functions is all gone. We don’t know which parts to join.”
“Her condition was deteriorating. She was troubled and in lot of pain. I just remember that we were by her side in her last moments, but were helpless to do anything. This is what hurts me so deeply and will always remember”.
“I knew she would not recover because doctor had said she will not be okay”
“We never realized how much attached we were to her, but ever since she has left us, we have no idea how to start life again, where to start from”
“If the law thinks its right to marry a girl at the age of 12 or 13, then a 15-16 year old boy who rapes or harms a girl, why can’t he be punished?”
Father Of Jyoti Singh (Nirbhaya)
“Doctor said she won’t survive for more than few hours or maximum 2-3 days. Given what’s happened to her, it’s hard to believe that she survived. We don’t know how she is alive”
“To call them human is insulting and giving a bad name to humanity. If we call them monsters, even monsters have some limits. These are totally the devil. They went beyond the limits of evil. Even the devil himself couldn’t commit such a terrible crime”
“We are hurt and shocked that the juvenile will be freed after committing such a huge crime. We are like a bird whose wings have been cut. We cannot fly, we live with fear and anxiety ”
Amod Kanth (Head of Prayas,NGO for Rape Victims And Juvenile)
“Public opinion should not become the reason for any kind of conviction or even death sentence at times. We don’t belong to that kind of social order or India is not that kind of country. Many countries are like that- hang the person on the pole, kill the man straight away, cut his hand, throw him away. That kind of thing doesn’t happen in this country. It’s a democratic country and very liberal country from that point of view. We have very rich traditions of tolerance also. So probably from that point of view the present demand for death sentence in many cases is not in the spirit of India’s history”