The executive board of the Saket Bar Association has vowed not to represent any of the men accused of gang raping and killing of a 23-year-old Indian woman.
The unprecedented move illustrates the anger, embarrassment, shame and disgust that Indian’s feel in the wake of worldwide attention regarding the nation of 1.21 billion people’s treatment of women.
Sexual harassment is a daily problem for women in India. Wider social change with a focus on ending all discrimination has been the goal of social activists in the emerging power for generations. India has a history of satyagraha and non-violent protests, but in recent years young people have been reluctant to participate in social activism because of the fear of economic ramifications of having a criminal record.
A CNN report illustrates the extent of the “acceptability” of sexual assault in the country. Numerous Indian state and national lawmakers are facing rape and other charges against women. The report states that over the last five years, Indian political parties have nominated nearly 300 people facing similar charges.
Till recently women were accorded the role of the inferior sex and prized possession of man. More than 50% of females above age 15 in India cannot even read and write.
This horrendous incident will undoubtedly lead to education of Indian women and their empowerment.