Two 20-something, well in adulthood lovers, were duped and manipulated by the girl’s family after they fled to get married. The two from the same village and the same ‘gotra’ (clan), but from different families (with houses 1 Km apart), were made to believe that their families were ready to accept them.
Once in the trap, the butchers from the girl’s family, in the most horrible manner possible, hacked the couple to death, slicing their bodies in many parts. Everyone in the village knew it.
In fact, an elaborate spectacle of this butchery was made in the whole village with the severed head of the boy on display, warning others to think of the consequences before taking such a step as this couple had done.
And the spectacle was fully endorsed, highly appreciated, in a village that is in Rohtak, hometown of Haryana’s chief minister, Bhupinder Singh Hooda.
Mr. Hooda is a qualified lawyer and his son, who is Member of Parliament from Rohtak, Deepender Singh Hooda, is an MBA from the Kelley Business School, Indiana University, USA.
But do their educational backgrounds make any difference? NO! They are as backward as the villagers who endorse such killings. Villagers or the contractors of the communities do it in the name of social norms. Politicians like Hooda do it for the sake of their political interests.
Education can make you look and talk smart, can arm you to manipulate the System, can take you to the places, but it cannot make you a ‘humane’ human being when you are from the badlands of Haryana, Punjab, western Uttar Pradesh or any other place where honour killings have become an acceptable norm in societies like in Haryana chief minister’s hometown. Try a periodic Internet search for ‘honour killings in Rohtak’ and you will come across loads of results.
Both, the ‘educated father-son duo’, say there is no need for a ‘new or separate law’ on honour killings. Yes, they do condemn such incidents, but such knee-jerk reactions are more to address the pressure of media and the civil society activists, than to the issue itself.
And it’s the mindset that is to blame, a mindset that has become the System itself, and the people sick and paralysed from this mindset, have become its different appendages, elongating the run of horror.
Honour killings or ‘dishonour’ killings whatever we say, are the stark reality of this India that boasts of space-age technological sophistications.
Whatever we claim but education or civilization advancement tools like the technological achievements or economic prosperity have failed to fill the gap.
Places like the badlands of Haryana or anywhere else where the honour killings are rampant have proven how ineffective educational training have been in eradicating sentiments that push the butchers to kill their own sons and daughters in the name of family, village or community honour.
When someone as highly educated like Mr. Deepender Hooda, (a senior politician as well, even if his seniority is because of his political lineage) or someone entrusted with running a state smoothly on the principals of the Indian Constitution like Mr. Bhupinder Hooda, who is son of a freedom fighter, become party in extending support to the perpetrators of such heinous crimes in the name of honour, we can gauge how deep is the rot.
Yes, just putting butchers behind bars, butchers who feel proud in killing their own sons and daughters, is not going to change anything. Because, these butchers know they are not going to be hanged till death. Because, these butchers know, once back to their communities, they will be hailed as heroes.
They have to be ostracized. If their immediate society fails to do so, the law needs to do so.
A tough law is needed for the bunch that doesn’t know what humanity is.
A report on a TV news channel said in UK, every year, almost 12 honour-killing cases are registered and the perpetrators are Indians and South Asians.
See! Education or living in an advanced western civilization fails to make any difference. It’s about the mindset!
Use ‘honour’, ‘dishonour’ or any other phrase, these are plain killings, committed in the most gruesome ways, breaking all the norms of humanity. In fact, such killings must come under ‘rarest of the rare’ category. Courts need to finish such cases at the earliest, unlike December 16, 2013 Delhi gangrape case that took nine months. Nine months in a case that saw a massive public outrage forcing the politicians to enact a stringent anti-rape law. Nine months in a case when the policymakers sitting at the top had promised the result within 2-3 months.
Its not that the relevant laws to handle such ghastly crimes are not there in the Indian Penal Code. What is needed is severity in implementation.
Inhuman ways are needed to teach humanity to them who cut other human beings to pieces in full public view. And it has to be time-bound.
The mindset change is a long-term effort. But it is also urgently imperative that we, as a civilized society, do not bear the burden of such butchers, such criminals anymore.
And the immediate measure is the fear of the harshest punishment under the law. Yes, it is not going to change anything soon but the fear of death will be the first step on the process to the mindset change.
Education may come later on to build on the fear quotient.
©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/