Victim-blaming continues to be the rule, not the exception. For women, this is particularly true, living as we do with a cultural preference that so persistently portrays women as the cause of our own undoing. In cases of rape, even more so. It’s a real ‘shame’ when we do that because it gives birth to ‘crime’ or should I say ‘barbaric crime’. Regardless of whether the issue is related to rape, racial inequity, or poverty, it is easier to blame the victim than to admit to systemic problems. Three, we have millennia worth of histories, myths, and parables in which women are the cause of their own, and often, others’, woes. Those stories, written by the powerful about the powerless, form the basis for deeply entrenched cultural attitudes about blame, shame, sex, and power. Those stories inform the casual blame assigned to rape victims regularly. It needs to be stopped because it is causing severe harm to the society. It’s time to focus on the systematic flaws and change them for good. With this focus in mind we have achieved a milestone in the form of Juvenile (Care and Protection of Children) Bill that was passed by Rajya Sabha, after a long battle by the people of our country and the Nirbhaya Trust.
Apart from changing technique and the mind set, it is equally important to visualise the recent scenario and work towards it. We wish to ensure that local and national courts eliminate barriers that impede the investigation and prosecution of sexual violence and that all legislation promotes equality between women and men in all spheres of life, in accordance with international standards We understand that ‘Violence is not inevitable however it can be prevented’. But it’s not as straightforward as eradicating a virus. There is no vaccine, medication or cure. And there is no one single reason for why it happens. As such, prevention strategies should be holistic, with multiple interventions undertaken in parallel in order to have long-lasting and permanent effects. We aim to spread awareness in the society and eradicate gender based violence in any shape or form.
Last but not the least the most important component of our mission is counseling which is a very crucial input because, both during and after the crisis situations, most victims do undergo a phase of severe trauma. Especially in rape cases, victims may even suffer from problematic symptoms like lack of appetite, loss of weight, insomnia, nightmares, insecurity, depression and other behavioural and personality disorders. Nirbhaya Trust makes sure that we reach to the victims as soon as possible and to evaluate the financial condition and support them instantly. We also wish to provide education, residence and employment for socially rejected girls. In all such cases, the much needed healing touch that can be provided only through counseling and our dedicated team makes sure that we provide legal and emotional support to the victim and their families.