Core of the Issue – How to Stop Rapes in India

Core of the Issue: How to Stop Rapes in India

Core of the Issue: How to Stop Rapes in India

I remember reading something very interesting about why parents are so concerned about their daughters staying out or partying late, but being lenient with sons of the same age. The point made was that parents don’t get to share in the good parts of a daughter going out with a guy, they only get to see the ugly bits (and that there aren’t too many ugly bits when it concerns a son).

To explain, all the fun parts of a relationship… the flirting, infatuation, romance, sex and sweet little nothings, etc… parents simply don’t experience it. But what happens when things go bad? And by bad, I don’t mean when a relationship sours and there’s heartbreak, I mean when things go really bad. Like the girl is molested or raped or sexually taken advantage of, and all of it caught on a cell-phone camera.

That is when parents and the immediate family bear the brunt of society as much as the girl. Relatives, friends and jaankaars gossip and spread half-truths that usually condemn the girl as loose and without morals. If the media gets wind of it they come running like hyenas hoping for some fresh meat to throw in front of their viewers. Policemen and government agencies that get involved are even worse, making sure the girl and her family go through hell.

As you’ll realize, parents generally don’t see the good parts of their daughter’s relationship. They usually see the bad, so it’s kind of obvious why they aren’t exactly chuffed when they hear the girl acquired herself a new boyfriend. In a risk-reward tradeoff, they’re only seeing risk.

Getting to the point – stopping the rapes

So I thought about it. The reason it is so bad when a girl has been sexually taken advantage of is because society points fingers and says shit about her and her family. This so called “disgrace in the eyes of society” is what makes it so bad. I mean, if no one said anything, that would indicate they probably didn’t care. And if they didn’t care, they’d just move on with their lives. The girl and her parents would file a case against the boy and try to move on with their lives. The policemen would file a complaint and set in motion the due process of law and move on.

But no, nobody moves on. So let’s try turning this process on its head. Next time, whenever a male is even accused of mistreating, eve-teasing or sexually harassing a woman, start talking shit about him. Make up disgusting stories that put his entire character into question. Add masala like it’s free and fling some on his family and parents also. Go to the media and say that he was involved in a prostitution and human smuggling ring. Explain breathlessly how seedy characters regularly visit his house in the late hours of the night.

If you’re in the media, even better! Make stuff up like this

Character assassinate molester and everything around him

Core of the Issue

Take the fight against rape to those who can nip it in the bud – the man’s family. You know why am I taking such a radical stand? Let me explain. Human behavior is about incentives. So if my son molests a woman and I can make him get away with it by blaming the woman, or laughing it off by saying “ladke toh aise hi hote hain“, or worst case scenario, making him marry the woman… then I will. Not because I’m a bad or a good person, because my incentives are stacked that way.

So you see this photo?

Teach your son not to rape

It’s so sweet. “Don’t teach me what to wear. Teach your sons not to rape“. Sounds so nice also. Yeah, a slogan we can all fight for. But it is wrong. The mother who’s been taught that women must bow down to men will teach the same to her sons and daughters. And I kid you not, I’ve seen it up close and personal. Educated women who teach their daughters that women are destined to suffer. Also, when her laadla son is in shit, the mom will do anything to defend and get him out of the situation, which frequently includes going after the girl’s character.

So what do you do? Introduce massive disincentive for the family if the son fucks up.

Seriously, when the father and mother realize that society will hound them to death if their son is caught teasing, molesting, touching or raping a girl, they’ll damn well ensure he doesn’t do it. And moms all over the country will tell their sons very clearly

I don’t give a fuck what she is wearing. You’re not to touch her, or I’ll break those arms of yours.

Oh and if I may suggest this, here’s some optimization to the protest location strategy.
Optimizing the protest location strategy Where to protest a rape


Hey, but what if the man is not guilty?

Then you’ve probably condemned a man to hell, made life miserable for him and his family and probably put them under great financial and emotional strain.

But every battle has its casualties. It just depends on what matters more to you, dear reader, and how much of a price you’re willing to pay. If you really care about stopping the rape of women in our country, then you must attack the root cause of the problem – disincentivize those who do it. This obviously means that some men get treated unfairly in the process and get caught in your ire.

It’s called the Law of Sacrifice and it states

You have to give up something in order to get something

If you feel that the sacrifice is too large, then that’s cool too. You could do the other things that you feel will solve the problem.

Image credit: avidaebella @ Flickr

Core of the Issue: How Love and Courage are the same thing

Love and Courage

One of the best things about being with some really smart people at IIFT was, pile them with strong beer and they’d be on their way unraveling the deeper meaning of life. On one particular occasion, the discussion turned to “What is love?”.

What I understand is: in their purest forms, love and courage are both “suppressing the basic instinct of self-preservation”. Let me explain.

Love – The most often celebrated form of love is a mother willing to face extreme danger and death, just to save her child.

What’s she doing here? Suppressing her instinct of self-preservation, for the sake of her child.

Another aspect is, a lot of lovers say this for each other “I’m even ready to die for him/her” (see this and this). This is usually accepted as the most you can do for another person.

Courage – The highest award for bravery given in the Indian Armed Forces is the Param Vir Chakra and it is awarded for “the most conspicuous bravery or some daring or pre-eminent act of valour or self sacrifice, in the presence of the enemy, whether on land, at sea, or in the air.” Consider this; 14 of the 21 awardees have received it posthumously.

What’s my point here? It is that courage is celebrated because it is again, the suppressing of the instinct of self-preservation. In times of war, soldiers do this regularly while they go in to battle or take on situations with difficult odds.

The difference between Love & Courage – Love is when you are willing to suppress your instinct of self-preservation for someone whom you know, are close to & are fond of.

Courage is when you do the same, usually for someone you don’t know. Soldiers giving up their lives for their countrymen, strangers pushing someone out of the way of a moving vehicle and risking death themselves, etc.

The image on top is taken from Please support him to make an awesome app by donating at

Also, check out the other “Core of the Issue” posts

Core of the Issue: What is God?

what is god

Most of us have, at one time or the other, wondered about the existence of God. I did too, and this while I was in an autorickshaw on the way to college. A little pondering and methinks I’ve kind of got it.

God is a lack of information. You see, dear reader, you’ll find yourself taking the name of God most often when there is not enough information for you to confidently predict something. Examples, the outcome of a closely matched game, a big job interview, when you intend to propose a relationship to someone and you’re not sure how they’ll react, and so on and so forth.

Most of the Roman and Greek gods were the gods of something that wasn’t predictable. The god of war, of love, of agriculture, etc. I’m sure the same holds true for the others too. In case of the one-god religions, there was a SPOC (Em Bee A m/).

Now how did I stumble upon this little epiphany? I remembered that whenever I was in an aircraft and it was taking off, I could see people join their hands, close their eyes and mumble. Yet, no one ever does that when a train starts its journey. In the latter, the passengers are busy waving goodbye or chatting or arranging their stuff. Why does this happen? Because the variables in aircraft travel are far more than in train travel.

To validate my hypothesis, I did a quick dipstick survey of some friends and that confirmed it; they usually say a quick prayer when commencing air travel but never so when on rail. Another way to look at it is, a lot of the olden gods were about weather. Taking a personal example, Indian agricultural communities almost always have a prayer which is specially said for rain. However, that’s hardly ever used now. These days, you just switch on the TV and watch the weather forecasts.

Now, as we are able to gather and interpret increasing amounts of information in the world around us, will the usage of “God” reduce? Almost certainly. Will the usage of “God” come to a stop? No. There’s still way too much incomprehensible information floating around and some stuff just cannot be conclusively proven, like life-after-death.

This brings me to another point, should you trust/believe in God? One side of me says don’t rely too much on it. A strong “faith in God” means you might not have the incentive to control those variables of your life which you could if you tried hard enough, and which could lead to a much better standard of living for you.

The other side of me says you should, because believing that a greater force has your welfare in mind and is coordinating things so that life turns out well for you means you experience greater satisfaction with whatever you have, and worry less about the future.

Putting these two together, I’d say if you’re the ambitious kinds, say a quick prayer in the morning and then go out and get stuff done. If you’re just looking to be happy and are not really interested in the rat race, then yes, you should go to mountains, try meditation, maybe join the local chapter of your chosen religion and so on and so forth.

Edit: Greater minds have already covered the issue.

See and the image below.

Core of the Issue: How Democracy leads to Corruption


About a day or so ago, I was with a group of friends and we were having a discussion on the topic “Corruption is the main outcome of democracy in India”. Corruption as an issue comes up almost every day in India, however, I’d never associated it with democracy in a cause-and-effect manner.

Corruption to me is power and wealth balancing each other out. For example, a government employee has the power to delay documentation and introduce red tape into any process under her/his direct control. Another person (businessman, professional, etc) wants his work to be done quicker, but only has wealth and not the power. In this situation, the government officer leverages his power to appropriate wealth, while the person who wants his work done will (in most cases) gladly hand over some cash to grease the wheels. So basically, those that have wealth try to buy more power, while those with power try to appropriate greater amounts of wealth.

Now what does this have to do with democracy? Initially, I thought democracy should be discouraging corruption. After all, a group of people elect a leader, who is then accountable to them. If he doesn’t perform or is given to under-the-table dealings, they put up someone else the next time around. Unfortunately dear reader, as nice as that sounds, that’s not how people work.

You see, it’s about power and wealth all over again. Wealth is concentrated in the hands of the few; according to this report, the top 1% of India’s adult population holds 15.9% of its wealth; the top 5% own 38.3% and the top 10% own 52.9%…..the bottom 20% hold just 1% of the country’s wealth.

The poorer masses only have numbers and voting rights, which they use to appropriate power, electing their own to the higher government echelons (which is also reason for the high incidence of caste politics in India).

Now this one elected minister is the SPOC (single-point-of-contact, I still am an MBA) for all those wealthy people and the power/wealth balancing that we spoke of earlier, ensues. Only this time it’s on a much larger scale. Why is this so? There could be many answers; stakes are much greater, all those who helped the person become a minster have to be compensated, being the SPOC the minister has to be paid an amount equivalent to all the various smaller people who would have to be paid off in the earlier situation, etc.

If you feel I might be incorrect in my analysis or may have missed out something, then, dear reader, kindly pen down your thoughts in the comments section below.