A rape is a rape is a rape.  It has nothing to do with sex, which is  beautiful and ought not to be used as a dirty word, and everything to do with power, violence, aggression. The latest headline-grabber — the  case  of  the 9 year-old Russian girl who was raped on a Goa beach and the threat by the Russian govt to issue a travel advisory to Russian tourists advising them not to travel to India —  will give this horrendous episode a diplomatic colour. But the core issue is  “rape” and how it is viewed, dealt with in India. It matters little if the victim is a Russian girl who was holidaying with her mum or a Dalit girl in the tribal backwater or a working woman in a metropolis. It also matters little what the person was wearing ( Some crazies have been demanding ban on billboards with  bikini-clad girls in Goa, arguing that this leads to  sex tourism).  Perverts and paedophiles donot need a bikini to egg them on. If anyone does a survey on what a  victim was wearing when she was raped, I am fairly sure that h/she will find that the vast majority of those who have been raped in India were not wearing BIKINIS.   It is time to get real, and irrespective of what the Russian government does or does not do,  demonstrate unambiguously India has  zero tolerance  for rapists.


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