Culture in India

Only an estimated 15% of sexual abuse is reported, out of which only 1% is brought to court! The reason for this is, that a raped woman often losses respect from her own family and community.
She poses a problem! She is regarded as a woman with ill character and repute. This attitude is deeply anchored in the Indian believe system and spans through the entire caste system.

The family won’t shelter their daughter anymore, otherwise the whole family would be tormented by the community.

Instead, the daughter gets married to her rapist! The rapist accepts in order to cover up the incident and avoid prison sentence. The woman is left with no choice but to agree. If she would defend herself, there is not much left to her other than to become a prostitute. Because of her lack of education there is hardly any other option in order to survive. A ‘normal’ marriage is out of the question; no other man would want to marry a defiled woman. The choice between prostitution and marriage with the rapist is brutal and inhuman, unimaginable for us, but not unusual in India.

Under no circumstances do the women consider the option of entering one of the existing national women safe houses. The disintegration and lifelong condemnation of a woman is known of, should she ever end up in such a ‘House of Disposal’, as it is nicknamed. What happens after the wedding to the bride within their marriage is often unsurpassable in its perversion, exploitation and brutality. There is no escape. Many women, out of desperation and hopelessness, chose to commit suicide.

Samadhan offers a solution, which offers an alternative to the customary ways of thinking and cultural reality. To fight the sexual and domestic abuse of women in India, means to enter great danger. Because this issue is not only taboo in Indian society, but many influential men, with high standing social rank, collude with the rapists and manipulators. Renu, for example, has recently put three ministers behind bars, who had remorselessly abused their cleaning lady sexually and had hidden her in a room without daylight for six months.

With the help of Samadhan this young woman managed to flee under great personal risk. This case was broadcast widely in the media. The rapists moved heaven and earth to stop the young woman from talking in court. Only by putting her own life on the line was it possible for Renu to bring this case to justice.

During a press conference the young woman received a phone call from her father. He told her several men where at his house. Renu wanted to know what the men wanted from him. He said: “They want that you drop the case. But forget it, continue to fight for your cause.” Then he hung up the phone. The next day her father was found dead.

Renu cried when she retold this story. In order to protect her son, her sisters and brothers and her mother she broke off all contact. They would be too big  a target for her enemies. The danger of being blackmailed through private relationships is too big. She often misses her family, but she sees it as a price for doing her work. ebrochen. Sie wären eine zu grosse Zielscheibe für ihre Gegner. Auch die Gefahr aufgrund von persönlichen Kontakten erpressbar zu sein, ist zu gross. Sie vermisst ihre Familie oft, aber dies sei der Preis ihrer Arbeit.