Occupy Raisina Hill

These are all long-haul projects, the patient task of families and schools, and less emotionally satisfying than attacking Manmohan Singh. Tempting as it is to rail at the government, we have to realise that responsibility for crime, including this one, is more diffuse than we would like, and we have to assign blame in the right ratio. Iron rods in all private buses are not Sheila Dikshit's fault or within her control, but better public transport is. No politician can guarantee a deadline on how long a case will take in court. Many people attacked the police for talking about tinted windows — but that was the only thing they could realistically have tackled, in this instance. When the home minister spoke of a judicial commission to look into women's safety, it was booed as "another useless commission".

Time-bound justice is our due. But let's be clear about how big and bone-deep the problem of sexual violence is. Petitions aren't going to stop rape, nor is street lighting really, or token gestures like VIPs giving up their own security. Even at the India Gate protest, a young woman I met had been whistled at by a couple of men in the crowd. So even as we press for solutions, we've got to acknowledge that we are the problem.


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