The enormity of anger in India over the issue of crimes against women seems to be trapped in a critical mass of frustration with no immediate or even medium-term, assurance of a resolution brought about by an uncompromising and efficient justice system. What condemns this scenario more darkly is the continuing spate of rapes. The assault on a female foreign tourist in Manali last week, when she took an arguably inappropriate decision to hitch a ride on a truck, comes as a fresh jolt of shock in a country still seething over the death of a young girl after a brutal gang rape in New Delhi last December — which served as a tipping point to galvanise the entire nation to demand change in its criminal justice system.
The new anti-rape law has more muscle and includes a wider range of offences, but its implementation across the country is what will determine if India can actually flex this muscle. Concurrent with this is the gargantuan task of changing society’s attitude towards women. It is a tough enterprise, but not impossible. History is full of instances when it has been made in a day.