Crime and Punishment

I was going thru the the JILS blog and the entry named ‘Through my Looking Glass’ by the lady who claimed to be sexually violated by a retired Supreme court judge. She writes about this incident in a cool, story telling way which I find at complete contrast with the recital of similar incident by another lady involved in sexual assault case of Tehelka’s Tejpal. This lady sounds extremely agitated and angry. In both cases the males involved were their long time associates and more or less like their mentors. In spite of many other similarities in both cases, the responses of ladies involved are dramatically different. One wants to forget and forgive while the other wants to teach the violator a fitting lesson.

How should society respond in these cases. Should the response be in line with the desires of the victim or should it be solely based on the crime committed?

In both cases society has responded in a similar way. In case of the retired judge, the response is a bit subdued but essentially the public in general does not want violators in these cases to be forgiven, whatever be the victim’s desire. This is more so because in both cases the violators are influencial people and hence public feels that these cases must be given maximum exposure so that they  become lessons for their peers and other lesser mortals who may want to indulge in such acts in future.

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