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5

The law, in its majestic equality, forbids the rich as well as the poor to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal bread. ~ Anatole France

Rights, like laws are determined by the powerful to address problems they face or allow actions they prefer and apply "equally" to all. These also happen to be those unlikely to prevent them from acting as they wish.

We seem to have reached an era where we "harvest" the power of hard won rights to ensure unfettered freedoms for some, while the most dangerous instances of suppressed rights continue to go under the radar.

To me, Charlie Hebdo appeared to be among such instances before the attack. Its right to free speech was largely protected by both laws and culture. There was little question of it not being allowed to have its range of free speech and that speech (in my opinion) was squandered on making a point of being offensive in a juvenile manner. I had earlier promised to publish the offensive cartoons (without seeing them) - regardless of Indian laws on the matter as a statement against violent and extra-judicial suppression of free speech. However, after seeing them, I am forced to limit myself to writing, as I honestly couldn't find anything funny about a star coming out of an ass - for example. My five year old son probably would (he even thinks farts are hilarious and breaks out laughing every time he hears one), but he doesn't blog here yet. Regardless, there is no question that free speech includes the right to be offensive as well as juvenile.

On another level, I am reminded of two recent rape cases to hit media courts - but not courts of law till the state took suo moto action in one. Both cases saw women well versed with women's rights and procedures and law after rape make no attempt to comply with the law by promptly undergoing medical tests or filing police cases. Both these women were unhesitatingly supported by more women's rights activists, lawyers and journalists, and yet the only action taken was public leaks of accusations that resulted in media character assassination campaigns that protected the identity of the victim and unquestioningly published accusations as fact in the manner of press releases and left no room for the accused to even speak in their own favor.

What I find common to both instances is empowered entities having full knowledge of their rights and using them to maximum effect, exercising their freedoms with little responsibility beyond knowing own rights.

In a world where battered and bleeding women showing monumental courage walking into police stations to file rape charges get denied, in a world where states silence dissent or target communities on the basis of identity, to exercise rights in a manner that flaunts their potential to hurt innocents has a very predictable backlash that questions the necessity of the right to exist at all without limitations.

The more insults are heaped on religion for the sheer joy of insulting, the more are voices disturbed by indiscriminate hurt caused demanding a leash. The more women flaunt the unequal protections granted to protect the voiceless many women routinely denied justice, the more misogynists claim that women use the law to punish men and there are few cases of real justice. It also seems a bit farcical to me to claim massive trauma from a fleeting incident the victim did not attempt to avoid a repeat of, in a country where marital rape (often painful and repeated) is not just common but perfectly legal and the women continue to function, while living within easy reach of their rapists (who enjoy complete impunity) without any crippling trauma recognizable to outrage brigades. It is also a country where no particular effort is visible to insist on justice for cases that are not young professional women, low caste, outside cities (particularly Delhi) and so on. And cases are cherry picked to be sensitive to, with little uniformity of importance for cases across the spectrum the crime covers.

Similarly, we see targeting for race as wrong, so why is targeting for religion a right? Similarly, in France, why is banning of specific headgear only for Muslim women wrong, but ridiculing the religion right? It is hardly a secret that your free speech won't extend to pedophilia - even if the pedophile is staunchly against child rape and insists on consent. Who went and decided that children don't have the free speech to consent to sex? For that matter, why are violent rape porn or child rape porn CARTOONS illegal, when obviously no one got harmed in making them? Why is a person who praises the attack on Charlie Hebdo or defends it "supporting terrorism" as opposed to merely exercising free speech to express an opinion? Is it that there is someone sitting up there deciding what should offend us and what shouldn't? Is it that this "righteous offense" is determined unilaterally by some entity that is no more accepting of "free speech" than a religious person, but remains unquestioned? Will we some day see a cartoon ridiculing someone who demands a ban on child rape porn cartoons? Yes these examples are "offensive" - we are discussing a right to offend, right?

This is not to say that exercising rights is wrong. It cannot be wrong and must never be leashed. However, there appears to be disproportionate utility or access to rights that is troubling.

For example, another way the Charlie Hebdo attack reminded me of rape was the motive for the crime being "provocation".

There is a perpetual conservative response that blames the victim and recommends not offending. In effect, creating a right to be offended. On the other hand, the offense being social, the mere upholding of rights does little to prevent unjust and illegal retaliation. Those at risk must strike their own balance between continuing to enjoy their rightful freedoms and exercising caution. Regardless of who is at fault, it is the life of the victim that ends up devastated or lost altogether. There is bravery in bold stands, but there is nothing wrong with installing a phone app that allows you to instantly broadcast an SOS - for example.

Less discussed is the willingness to risk the safety of another. Just because a woman should have the right to travel in the city alone at all hours (and you would do it as a ringing statement of your freedom), would you ask a woman employee or relative to travel alone at night in .... Delhi - for example? I suspect the day is not far that publishers of content that can trigger a violent backlash will consider the potential risk of the editorial stance to employees or others tasked to protecting their lives.

While even empowered women are long used to compromising freedoms for safety and finding ways to exercise rights when they really matter rather than making risk a way of life regardless of importance of goal; the question of free speech remains stuck on absolutes that depend on the world comprehending specific ideals and respecting them. This is not a criticism of any choice - they are all our right and our safety is our right regardless.

There is also a need to include more voices on what we agree on as rights. While I believe that free speech and particularly the right to challenge entrenched bastions of authority (including government and religion) must be sacrosanct, my belief in democracy also forces me to accept that like any other participant in a democracy, I have no special right to have my specific preferences met and those contradicting it, overruled. I would rather prefer to dig in my heels on those saving lives and rights. I also believe it is more important that free speech or women's rights (or indeed any other rights - women's rights is just an example) not be trivialized in a manner that shakes popular support to crucial, life and death need. In my eyes, the need to prevent the suppression of expression of religious belief through attire trumps the need to allow juvenile, racist crudery that effectively deems large swathes of humanity as inferior. In my eyes, it is more important that Saudi Arabia flogging a blogger be fought - with international pressure, if need be; than the right to stereotype and demean people.

I don't dispute that these are rights and can and will be exerted in a whole range of ways that will be as diverse as there are people. What I am suggesting is that uniformity and equality demands that we understand the variations in urgency and ensure basic rights and freedoms more equally before allowing free rein to a few disproportionate voices. Perhaps there is also a question of why some kinds of radicalization is unacceptable while other kinds of radicalization are free speech. After all, having a near cult following for juvenile insults to all sorts of diverse cultures cannot be all that different from seeing your religion as the only true one and discriminating against others. Except that the "holy book" of the "religion of offending as a means of creating enlightenment" is illustrated and easier to read.

That said, because Charlie Hebdo faced the attack, upholding its right to free speech now becomes paramount, as opposed to merely supporting the right to free speech of yet another kind of religious fundamentalism.

There is also a need for believers of all religions who do not support violence to not blame the actions that "provoked" the criticism by enacting the religion in a manner that brings it disrepute. What Islam (or Hinduism in India) "really" is becomes irrelevant if it manifests as a danger to others. Religious people need to recognize that it isn't their humanitarian description getting insulted and avoid providing smokescreens to criminals by making it about themselves. Violent fanatics conducting cold, premeditated murders while yelling "Allah hu Akbar" or "Jai Shri Ram" are not a figment of the imagination of someone who likes to harass peaceful people. It is time to accept that there are people who enact your religion in ugly ways without your permission and either be okay with it or join the criticism of your own religion for not being enacted in a manner compatible with what you believe it "really" is. Jumping into the fray as victims without interpretation you endorse being criticized only implies that you will allow crimes in the name of your religion and are defending them. This helps no one. Least of all your religion.

What happened at the Charlie Hebdo premises was ugly, tragic and unwarranted - plain wrong. It was a crime and this article makes no attempt to justify it. The intent is only to dig in deeper to a level where we are able to find dialogue that goes beyond camps of "people like us" with "preferences like ours" to uphold. If it manages to engage people into deeper dialogue on what comprises free speech and attempts to find agreement across a wider range of humanity, perhaps over time we may find ways to strengthen and deepen the manifestation of rights - beyond merely being accepted as ideals - to a point where all are strengthened and conversations fuel enlightenment rather than provocation or outrage.

4

Dear media,

India is witnessing an unprecedented event. It is the largest election to date in the world. We have them every five years, but our population has grown since our own previous record. So has the reach of mass media and social media and mobile phones.

Recent developments in the country have raised the question of governance and accountability till you cannot say politics without thinking fighting corruption.

History is in the making, and our primitive media needs to evolve to be worthy of it. Let me not mince words. When I say primitive, I'm not speaking of your monthly air conditioning bill or the size of cars of our anchors, but the refinement of thinking that seems sadly absent.

Today, if we see the coverage of the elections, there really is little in terms of addressing the issues on governance and the priorities of people that will get expressed through the act of voting.

When we look back on a historic election, are we really to see a jumble of perception mongering and nothing that documents the change the country goes through? Are poll surveys, talk shows and campaign coverage all there is to elections? Is politics only about political parties?

What are the changes in the country? Demographics? Economy? Concerns about governance? How are they influencing how people engage with the structure of the country? How have gender rights engaged with the election process? Farmer rights? Tribal rights? Business classes, traders, large corporations? How are people choosing their leaders? What possibilities are there?

Evolution of people can't be about laws and policies alone. It takes a continuous dialogue, and it is where media is failing the country drastically. Our perception of priorities seems unable to exit what is within easy reach of elite areas. Rising devolution to primitive intolerance is further fanned by the media. And it isn't only about religion, it is about everything. Uncompromising conclusions and programmes that begin with black and white views and end there with the same few faces peddling the same few stands with changing "hot topics" that are remarkably similar to each other.

If we leave aside Satyamev Jayate, I can't recall the last time I heard dialogue on rape unless there was a young slim professional woman involved. Child rape, rape of older women, marital rape, gay rape and more are all not interesting enough. Because media is selling what sells, and what sells is violent sex/rape fantasies - even if they are accessed as being the problem. Media treats rape as sex, even when it is to say rape is not sex. The words being said are one thing, but the choice of "victims" tells its own tale. If there is a brief detour, it may be toward pedophilia. The knee jerk sitting up to pay attention of an exploitative population when titillating subjects fall on their ears, successfully turned into a low effort high turnover business. It isn't all that different from rape scenes selling films a decade or two ago. No one was calling the rapist a hero, but the crowd whistling in the theater used to say the film will be a hit.

We can speak of Soni Sori, and be angry about her specific perpetrators, who are not us. But speaking of the exploitation of tribal women or women of minorities... or worse women of the majority touches too close to home. Let us not do it. Who can blame you. Media is patriarchy after all. Male dominated, male owned, catering to a male dominated society, in bed with male dominated corporations and male dominated politics. You either consciously rise above these instinctive defaults, or quit the pretense of being progressive.

This is just one example. Every aspect of the country has vast unspoken sides. Kept silent to suit power lobbies.

What is the cost of living today? How much of our income are we saving as compared with our parents? Are these things the reason why the government faces an undeserved wrath, or has the government created them? What do people think about their ability to save? What do they believe will help them reach a more satisfying situation? You cannot expect your three piece suit to comment on the practicalities of running a home with three kids on a vegetable vendor's income. But there are plenty of vendors on the street who are expert commentators from sheer first hand experience!

This is an election where many of them are on the forefront of the minds of people. Yet media doesn't seem to have much interest into delving into them and bringing out really thought provoking programmes that tell people something they didn't know in ways that are demonstrably scientific rather than opinions. Here's a simple but powerful thought. The freedom to work and earn for a woman instantly turns a single income home into a dual income home. What implication does that have for poverty?

There are the biggies like corruption. And then looking within. Paid media. Both huge issues come election. One herded carefully into safe zones. The other blacked out, because what could be more horrible than looking into the mirror, right?

We speak of paid media, but all media cannot be paid. There is simply no way possible that every article could be monitored and controlled. It may be part of the problem to wring hands and moan about what others do, but it isn't the whole story. The larger part of the story is a lack of integrity.

Today, when Arvind Kejriwal was attacked, Times Now started a hashtag #SlappedAgain which largely got taken over by trolls to celebrate the assault. I don't think I need to comment on Times Now Hashtags. You'd have to be living under a rock to not see them. I can understand that Times Now has its own issues with sanity and does whatever it does. What is more difficult to understand is the complete silence of other channels on it. Apart from prejudicing the public before the elections and being a direct assault on democracy, a tag like this is also a trigger for further assault - being broadcast to massive numbers of followers and viewers.

The quid pro quo is not merely with politicians and business houses. It is with anything with the potential of causing discomfort or worse - real challenge. There is no scholarship or integrity demanded of self or each other.

As a "consumer", I have been reading for ages about how media should self-regulate. What is this self regulate? A channel getting its own reporters to toe lines? A newspaper publishing a retraction if someone sends a notice? What is your responsibility for upholding the quality of national dialogue? Or is the idea to get away with the easy deal till someone makes a law and forces some action that can be complied with minimally?

If there is one news channel with media bias, are the other channels dead? Are they blind that they do not see what is going on? They see. They may even snigger among themselves or readily admit that what is happening is wrong, but the will not leave their cushy chairs to report it and expose it. Because news cannot be about how perceptions are created, right?

In India, media has reached a level of impunity where little can be done about it, and it is a problem as much as a solution. A media that can devote endless time to a toppled metal detector or three month investigations into a 10 year old blog post about spam failed to draw enough attention to stings with an immediate relevance to the upcoming election. Stings on social media "services" that offer to promote your candidate or invent character assassination of your opponent. Services that offer to trigger riots for political purposes - including a recent demonstration of the video of the Sialkot lynching from 2010 being used to incite mobs in the Muzaffarnagar riots.

Media has failed to report adequately on the implications of perception engineering through doctored poll surveys. Media has failed to draw attention to the problems being reported with ballot boxes. Media has failed to provide adequate disclosure of broadcasts of event feeds provided by political parties - which essentially amounts to free advertising time.

Are we to look back on this historic election and find only a jumble of promotion and slander and poll surveys that look nothing like the results? Are we to look back at a historic body of work and find very little on parties other than those able to court limelight in Delhi?

It is not about one channel or newspaper failing, it is a collective failure where failure of one does not get professionally challenged, but cooperated with, resulting in a very poor intellectual capacity of Indian journalism as a whole.

Consider that journalism is a post graduate degree in India, and most news websites - at least the established ones - are at least a decade old. Yet we have news websites with the fundamental inability to link to sources. This is something your average blogger figures out within a week. Yet we have reports of crucial surveys and reports and laws without linking to documents so that the reader may educate themselves. From a profession of spreading knowledge, it is a profession of hoarding and controlling how much people are told.

A culture of intellectual fakery and not acknowledging sources means that reporting news reported by another channel won't do the honesty of naming the channel and linking to the news. Videos stolen from producers like Jay Hind without credit or compensation. Because of course some idiot who learned SEO 5 years ago recommends against linking out to hoard importance with search engines (no longer true). Every interview is an "exclusive" - published on five websites within minutes of each other. Report on some important research will not contain link, because that will be the more authoritative source for it, and you will no longer be the "best information" sabse tej or whatever shit. So FAKE it rather than look like you didn't invent all knowledge in the world. Last year, three news websites actually published news that the NIA (I think) had released sketches of terrorist suspects for people to see and report if they spot - WITHOUT PUBLISHING THE SKETCHES.

It is a lazy, unethical form of journalism that is so bloated on self importance that it fails to see its own importance in a moment when its ability to be a voice of knowledge will serve its country well. It fails to see beyond its own superiority. Sometimes treating AAP with contempt because "unwashed masses" protest and have no ability to rule or some such prejudice. Other times they shove a mic into someone's face that they want bytes from to sell, without respecting the person or understanding why they are important. But then, a media that doesn't sense its own value can hardly be expected to value another.

This can go on and on, but the main purpose of this letter is a reminder. You are more than a job. More than a "make no waves and never be controversial" hen laying golden eggs. You have voice, you have the power to reach the people of this country. You are faced with a historic occasion with an unprecedented number of issues determining the votes and a public with no access to find out realities beyond what you tell them. So far.

The internet is killing newspapers. Very soon it will kill TV channels too, unless they remain useful. The question is whether you are worthy of the responsibility for bringing national dialogue into this century and being the mirror reflecting the country for people to see and self-evolve?

Because there is also WhatsApp and Facebook and Twitter and word of mouth.... which may not have your power or speed, but if they win the trust you lose, you won't get it back, because the world is evolving into new media.

Do yourself the favor of dignity. Be the kind of journalists you idolize and would like to be remembered as, instead of assembly line robots adding a chunk of words into a larger design determined by someone else. Do the country the honor of honesty.

Vidyut

1

News Laundry published an aggressive, confrontational letter to the woman allegedly assaulted by Tarun Tejpal. Pandemonium ensued. Having written extensively about the other side of media reporting on the Tejpal case, I want to put my views on record, mostly to prevent defending them over and over in 140 letter tweets.

Is it right to question a rape victim?

In this case, yes, I think. If the victim has chosen the court of public opinion, then the court of public opinion must question her to form an informed opinion. I think it is morally wrong and a misuse of protections provided to rape victims if the anonymity required for a rape victim, and a default of believing her word (which, to the best of my knowledge is a requirement from the judge, not the common man) is misused by a person to provide one sided accusations against a named person who cannot respond to them. Particularly when she did not file a case at all and simply did an anonymous attack. Of course if there are questions about her narrative, they must be asked before the slander is allowed to proceed. Not even a court of law, which in theory believes the victim, would issue a sentence without clearing doubts raised.

Is it right to accuse the victim?

No. Not unless the accuser can prove they know what really happened and that it was a false accusation. Raising doubt is one thing, but to proclaim that the victim is somehow pretending or deliberately slandering Tarun Tejpal is about as substantiated or ethical as the media accusations war against Tarun Tejpal - in other words, not.

Raising doubts is one matter, but because doubts raised have no answer in the public domain is not good enough reasons to issue conclusions unilaterally.

Why did you not.....?

Blame or guilt for doing or responding in a certain way or not is a very judgmental way of engaging with an issue as sensitive as this. People are different. There is no telling who will do what and why or what other factors weighed on their mind. There are many kinds of rape that leave the victim confused whether they were violated or not, till they can process their experience and find the clarity and courage to identify what their wish was and whether it was respected in the moment. So entering a lift second time with rapist can have all kinds of reasons ranging from "consensual" to factors influencing the victim's mind in that moment beyond those described n the email days later.

Transferrence of blame

The writer  of the letter appears to hold the victim responsible for the actions of a hell of a lot of people. And we are including heads of media organizations, journalists, social media influencers and more whom she probably never even heard of.

Anyone can release a story to media. Many have enough connections to have the story spread among journalists. A woman who feels wronged may adopt any means she feels may get her revenge. For the record, I totally support women who go after those who abuse them and nail them by all means at their disposal. If I cheered rape victims bobbitizing their rapists, this one is a no-brainer. If victim had the reach to destroy her rapist, her trying is totally legit in my eyes.

But should it have succeeded? The part of me that cheers for a woman going at her abuser says "at least some". But the complete abdication of responsibility toward neutral reporting by media? That going away makes this issue far more serious than an individual crime. Media is the eyes and ears of the nation, and this was organized schizophrenia.

The bottom line is that media and jornalists had formal jobs to do, which included verifying, having a neutral perspective, and so on, which for reasons unexplained, media chose to completely abandon and take her every word and magnify it and project it to the whole country as a fact so grave, any questions raised about it were an assault on womankind. It was unprofessional. It was irresponsible, and it was something the victim could not bring about unless all these people were sending her their monthly salary and so on.

In conclusion

Individuals will do what they will. Be it right or wrong. Main thing is for our processes to be robust enough to allow each person access to justice. Victim and accused included. Read again. Access to justice. Not "total sanction to do whatever you want", as knee jerk media IQ is likely to take it.

I do understand the anger driving that letter. I feel that too. Though I blame the media and not the victim. I feel angry that in a country where horrendous crimes against women require the creation of such unequal protections, they are so frivolously exploited by those with the power to spin pretty words and spout theories, but feminism never said that women are always right and men are always wrong and women never lie and to question a woman means misogyny. To me feminism is about fairness. In this case, it was trampled by the side running a slander campaign in the name of justice. I am angry because I care about women's rights and the conditions they face, not just whatever the hot rape of the moment is.

I also understand that every human on the planet suffers violation at some point or the other. Be it physical, sexual, financial, political, whatever. When we speak of rights movements, we are talking about injustices unfairly stacked against the victims creating an all pervading handicap, not choosing our favorite victims and going guns blazing at every single wrong against them. It is about inequalities, not individuals. Or at least that is how I understand it.

It is also high time that people with ethics in media professions started balancing out rogue "human rights" exploitation campaigns of hot subjects or agendas that do more harm to human rights movements than good.

Considering today's Supreme Court verdict on Section 377 that criminalizes "carnal acts against the order of nature", there is a lot of confusion on what exactly is allowed and what is not. Here is a quick primer:

  • You can still marry kids, as long as they are not of the same sex.
  • Marital rape continues to be legal. It is a natural kind of sex for the kind of men our lawmakers make laws for, apparently.
  • You can continue to rape your child bride as long as she is not under 15 years of age (or you aren't a woman).
  • You have to ignore personal freedoms guaranteed by the constitution whenever you feel the urge to have sex with someone who has a penis (if you have one) or who has a vagina (if you have one) and control your urge, or give in and report to the nearest police station for your crime.
  • Law must discriminate on the basis of gender when it comes to sex. The constitution does not matter.
  • Sex between a man and woman for procreation is natural.
  • If you are a woman and infertile, post-menopausal or on contraceptives, the sex will be illegal.
  • If you are a man, sex using condoms is not natural, or you'd have been born with one. Also avoid sex except for procreation anyway, which means you will likely get two months of sex in your whole life.
  • Oral sex is illegal. So is anal sex and a lot of other acts. As a golden rule, if it isn't a part A into slot B kind of sex that will make little people like you, forget it.
  • The jury is out on kissing.
  • If you happen to be LGBT, please close the curtains while having sex. Ideally, close your eyes too, so there are no witnesses.
  • Renting a home to LGBT people or leaving them alone in your drawing room while you make tea could be aiding and abetting a crime, please consult a lawyer.
  • You may root for bringing down the age of marriage, putting restrictions on women's clothing, jobs, use of mobiles, marriages or whatever, your organization may have been implicated in terrorism, or you may have threatened to arm people against the government, but you should be rightfully proud for saving the country from a calamities like consensual gay sex.
  • Finally, the British are the true culture of India. Kamasutra and Khajuraho are secular scams. The British themselves slipped off the moral path and gave in to gay sex some 46 years ago, but do not lose your moral compass. Keep it pointed firmly to an era where the sex of everyone else was the business of people with the largest mob.

And if you are foolishly angry, watch out, because while nothing happens to Parliamentarians who do unconstitutional things (think UID, ICMS, IT Rules, RTE, restrictions on drinking age for adults under 25....) and while the courts supposedly empowered to strike down unconstitutional laws don't actually strike them down and kick the can into someone else's backyard, the fact is that this mockery of the constitution is legal.

However, saying something like "Fuck you Supreme Court" over this would be a contempt of court. If you put your belief that the judge trampled on the constitution onto paper as an op-ed, you'd be an intellectual. On a blog, you'd be a rebel blogger, just don't draw it as an image, because you'll go to jail for insulting a National symbol. Get it? Just like it is illegal to burn an Indian flag, but ok to faunt it on your desk next to your paper weight and silver pen while running a scam.

Additional note to MLAs: Kindly do not watch gay porn in the Assembly, and if you must, please make sure there are no media cameras around to catch it.

This post will most certainly be updated. I ain't done ranting yet by a long shot.

If you can't make out that this is sarcastic satire, you got bigger problems than the Supreme Court ruling.

Wise man, director of CBI Ranjit Sinha explained why betting must be legalized with this gem "If you can't prevent rape, enjoy it". Now, this is problematic on several levels.

The most obvious one being the idea that rape can be enjoyed. The misogynist myth that women choose to make a fuss about rape rather than rape actually being a problem is alive and well and in no less than the top of the food chain when it comes to investigating crime. This is where your cases go to when your cops and local investigations fail.

Just choose to like rape, and rape is no longer a problem. Is the idea.

At this minute, I am wishing Anonymous or someone DOXes the creep and puts all his personal information public. Then he can choose to enjoy that violation when he sees his bank account fifteen minutes later. Problem will be solved.

The other major problem with this thinking is also the obvious one. If we are talking of legalizing gambling in sports because we can't prevent it, and drawing parallels with rape, is this how cops think? That rape is ok, since they can't prevent it? What next? So we legalize rape too? Is that it? They have certainly failed to control it.

After the events of last year and the protests and the unending outrage and the promises of sensitization of the police force and what not, if no less than the director of CBI has learned NOTHING about what rape is and isn't, then he should resign and decide to learn or not on his own time and money. Not while sitting on the top of investigations all over the country in a country where rape is the fastest growing crime.

Resign.

Just fucking go.

And don't feel bad. Enjoy it.

PS: Here is a better way of justifying legalizing gambling in sports.

We already have state run lotteries and betting on horse races. The common man often gambles on Diwali and cricket matches. It is widespread and can't be prevented. It is consensual, and the responsibility is of the standards organizations of the sport that agreed standards are maintained. Public funds and police resources can go to more serious issues the country is facing.

No rape analogies were raped in providing this reasonable explanation. You are welcome.

Update: Ranjit Sinha has clarified:

"I gave my opinion that betting should be legalized and that if the laws cannot be enforced that does not mean that laws should not be made. This is as erroneous as saying that if rape is inevitable one should lie back and enjoy it.

"I regret any hurt caused as the same was inadvertent and unintended. I reiterate my deep sense of regard and respect for women and commitment to gender issues," he said.

Sigh. I imagine he means well, but it is simply a lack of comprehension of the problem. Dude, you cannot control gambling, but you can make laws legalizing it. THIS IS NOT THE SAME ACTION RECOMMENDED IF YOU CANNOT CONTROL RAPE.

Where is this man's brain?

To give him benefit of doubt (because he had not appeared to be a creep before this), I imagine he means the frustration controlling gambling is the same as with controlling rape or something. Or perhaps that it becomes a case of a victim accepting rape as one's fate after failing to prevent it. Or something. But the state is hardly a victim stripped of choices. So that doesn't make sense either.

If he resigns, he can figure all this out and apply again if  he thinks he understands it. Just saying. he's no use thinking like that, because whatever he means, those listening to him will be getting all the wrong messages.