The horrendous Delhi rape case
of December last year is as bad as they come, not simply because this was a gang rape that led to the death of the victim, but because of the attitude of the police. Alas, it seems that India is not the only country where those who are entrusted with protecting the public do not understand the rule of law. A recent report from Kenya
of the gang rape of a teenage girl has echoes of this same callous official indifference.
Last week it was reported that a girl of 16 had been gang raped by six men who dumped her in a sewage ditch afterwards, apparently leaving her for dead.
According to one source, she "developed a fistula, causing her to leak stool and urine. She is now confined to a wheelchair after she suffered a spinal cord injury."
What sort of punishment would you expect a court to hand down for that? In the UK, any of the gang who escaped with a 10-year sentence could have thought himself fortunate indeed. In the US, consider the sentence handed down to (the innocent) Brian Banks
for a he said/she said case in which the non-victim had suffered no physical injury.
Can it really be that the three members of this gang who were brought to book were ordered to "cut grass as punishment"?
This appears to have been too much for the public, but it remains to be seen if and what will happen next in this particular case. The Daily Nation
newspaper has agreed to meet her medical bills and to campaign for justice for her.
Another recent case
saw a man arrested for the rape of a 12-year-old girl. It is to be hoped that if this suspect is convicted he will face the full force of the law.
Finally, here is a short clip
from a 2010 film, While Women Weep
, about one aspect of Kenyan society the average tourist will not see. It remains to be seen how much credence can be given to the claim that a woman is raped every half hour in Kenya, and if this film is a plea for an end to rape or for abortion on demand, but sensationalism aside, there are major issues here that need to be addressed.