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Cause or gender? A fight against beliefs

A crime as heinous as rape seeks a restrictive definition in the Indian Law. Section 375 of the Indian Penal Code defines what and what not comes under the ambit of rape with its seven coded situations. The general notion of the crime being only against women has led to it becoming gender-centric and not cause-centric.

The nation has arose to fight on several instances to protect women and bring them justice by punishing their culprits which has led to a lot of amendments in the section itself to acknowledge the grievance but somewhere in this fight to protect women , we've stopped addressing how crime is not gender-based.

The rape laws in India are not gender neutral which highlights the fact that how man rape or transgender rape is not yet recognized by the legal framework. The Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace Act came into force in the year 2013 being superseded by the Vishakha Guidelines which were promulgated by the Supreme Court in the year 1997. When Section 9 in Chapter IV of the Act describes about the lodging of complaint for sexual harassment at workplace, it clearly writes down any aggrieved woman.

When Law talks about equality in its Constitution, is it not necessary to showcase the same promise while framing laws affecting the same citizens who expect that equality?

India possesses a strong masculine custom wherein the patriarchy instilled in its roots negates the idea of possibility of such heinous crime being done against men. We've heard some prominent lawyers remark and criticize the idea of making the rape-laws neutral proposing that it may make the judge's job difficult to find the truth in these cases and as such there have been no reported cases of women raping men.' A country where a boy since his birth has been trained not to deter his masculinity should not expect men to come out and report their bruises when for all they know there exists no codified law to protect them.

When it comes to making the judges' law difficult altogether by making the law gender-neutral, with more than 2.5 lakh pending cases dealing with rape, the country should not be proud of its restrictive growth in justice anyhow. We expect the learned to grow out of the social norms when it comes to justice and seek refuge of what is right and what is wrong but when the protectors of law themselves fail to recognize the problem, the patriarchal thoughts are nowhere to be blamed.

Vulnerability is not gender-bound. Grown-up males can fight against perpetrators is just too strong a belief to be true here. If at one point the law talks about fraud and coercion that may be imposed to get an act done against will, how can the same possibilities are ignored when it comes to abuse. The social prestige in dealing with emotional trauma has been so forced upon men that we just believe that the emotional and physical trauma is easier for men to deal with as against women.

How do we not blame ourselves as a society who has somewhere doubled the trauma by constantly teaching them to be strong and fearless, how hypocrite can we be to centralize equality only when it comes to upliftment of women, how are the feminism explanations justified when we demand equality selectively in  this country. It's not about against whom is the crime mainly focused or which gender forms the major part of the victims, it's about the crime, that it exists and it's growing.

The Preamble to the Constitution says:

We the people of India and not We the men and women of India. Some segregations have long formed the basis of inequality and justice should not be a part of it.

Widening the crime to incorporate transgender, the punishment for rape against any citizen of the transgender community is six months to two years according to Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill as against seven years or more against cis-gender women. The Blind-folded lady of justice does not use her balance to weigh the trauma and how it differs from gender to gender.

When in 2017, a transgender woman approaches a doctor after being brutally gang-raped, she is asked, How is this possible? For some reason Biology as subject fails to address the answer in this country. Trans phobia in the medical community and ignorance of physical abuse against transgender is quite evident. The stigma that is attached with the community since their birth is not unjust enough to question their victimization in such cases.

Human Rights shouldn't be long fought for. This community had to fight to be with a person of their choice when it should have been their right from birth. Mocking at sexuality which does not correspond to the idea of being normal' is not what the Indian Culture teaches us. The term gender' itself is not limited to male body or female body and is not normative in this regard.

India as a society is tied in various beliefs and norms which the people try hard to be free from. The law prevalent in a country keeps in mind the situations and the general norms of the society prior to framing the laws. 

The basic requirement revolves against the fact the country can't be divided into communities when it comes to dealing with a crime and can only be addressed against which forms the major proportion. Some laws are to be framed fighting against the roots because somewhere the same roots prevent the country to welcome advancement and change in thoughts by accepting facts. It is equality that we are dealing with here and that shouldn't be just granted but held with pride. Again it's more about the cause and less about the gender.

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