Another brutal rape has occurred in India’s state of Rajasthan that is so horrifying one leading Indian newspaper ran a headline that reads “Have All Our Systems Collapsed? An 11-year-old girl was repeatedly raped in the back of a jeep and then left for dead in a field.
Two men, Suresh Jat and Ramesh Sharma, have been arrested for the rape, along with four other men who provided clothes, money, and shelter to help the rapists avoid capture. The case is proceeding slowly due to the frail condition of the victim, who was yanked away from her two sisters and dragged more than half a kilometer behind the jeep before being pulled into the vehicle and raped repeatedly.
The medical report about the rape are utterly appalling. The violence required to do the damage that was done to this tiny child is hard to comprehend. The girl had a complete perineal tear that destroyed the partition of muscles between her vagina and rectum. Doctors were forced to use a portion of her large intestine to create a new rectum.
One surgeon described the girls condition after she was brought to the hospital:
“When she was brought here, her vaginal tract was heavily contaminated and damaged so we had to perform a colostomy, or her wounds would never have healed.”
Since her arrival in the hospital, the child has undergone 14 operations including five major surgeries Doctors are concerned she might not have the will to live after the massive damage that has been done to her body and the terrible emotional trauma she has suffered.
One doctor spoke with sadness and great pessimism about the child’s future:
“It might take a couple of months more for the girl to recover. The injuries will get healed, but I don’t know how she will be prepared to cope up with the mental trauma after she is discharged.”
The only bright spot in this terrible crime is way the government of Rajasthan has come to the aid of the child and her family The family of six girls and one boy relocated to the province with their mother after the death of their father last year, and they have virtually no means of support. Thankfully, the state is providing the best of medical care for the victim and raising money for the family, but this does not diminish the severity of the crime.
Further complicating an already terrible situation is the dominant culture that usually holds the victim responsible for their own rape. An older sister’s fiancee ended his engagement to marry her after he heard about the rape, and the family was offered money under threat of violence to withdraw the charges against the rapists.
“A couple of months ago, we got threats with an offer to take Rs 10 lakh and withdraw the complaint. My sister has undergone so much pain, we will not compromise. After she is discharged, we plan to go back to Bihar. We will fight for justice.”
The rape took place on August 20, 2012, and, unbelievably, the crime received little attention in India until this week. After this attack and the fatal rape of the young Hindu woman that took place in Dehli on December 12, 2012, the nation of over one billion people must finally come to terms with its overwhelming rape problem. The people of India must rise up with one voice to demand an end to this terrible crime against the women of their nation.