Priyanka Dubey On What Needs To Be Done To Make India ‘A Nation For All Women’
- IWB Post
- September 3, 2019
As Priyanka Dubey raises in her latest book No Nation For Women, have we managed to become a nation for women from all walks of life? Seems like we have a long way to go because while we have managed to bring the topic of gender on the table, it still remains marred with prejudices and our flawed conventions.
As Priyanka Dubey’s No Nation For Women gets shortlisted for Book Prize 2019, here is a throwback to our recent Twitter chat that we had with Priyanka, in which she talks about how the gender justice gets affected by the caste system and prejudiced law.
“Dubey shows us that some of the most determined fights for justice come not from our media-saturated cityscapes but from the severely disenfranchised families of victims in rural areas. This is a timely reminder that the power to resist belongs to us all, it is both universal and democratic.”
Here are excerpts from the chat:
On what is required to begin the change
@indianwomenblog I think we can start by first listening to the accounts of survivors and start believing them. Sensitization of police towards handling of cases related to gender crimes is another must. But most importantly – its crucial to change the mindset of people #nonationforwomen
On sensitizing the law enforcement authorities
@indianwomenblog 1/2 yes i feel the moment you step 100kms away from metro cities- you will observe stark shift in the behavior of police. For many survivor families – just to be able to register an #FIR is a struggle. #nonationforwomen
@indianwomenblog 2/2 crucial clues are often ignored, the survivor’s versions not trusted and investigations botched which further hampers the legal course of case and in many cases accused are let off. #nonationforwomen
On the resistance faced by her from the government/CBI while researching for her book
@indianwomenblog #nonationforwomen 1/2 Government agencies are neither excited by queries from journalists nor do they normally unnecessarily resist. It’s quite normal – as part of my job as a journalist, I approach government agencies like any other reporter for their version on the story.
@indianwomenblog #nonationforwomen 2/2 Sometimes you get strong answers, while sometimes very formal answers and sometimes officers deny speaking to you. Whatever they say – I write it in my piece. This is SOP for any reporter. For accessing documents, i use my contacts and reporting skills
On the repercussions of the caste system on the cases of sexual violence
@indianwomenblog 1/2 Yes, in my limited experience i have seen that caste plays a major role in deciding the course of legal battles and investigations in most rape cases – #nonationforwomen
@indianwomenblog #nonationforwomen for example- accused belonging to an upper or influential caste WILL use all his regional political-social and monetary clout to make witnesses hostile and push survivor’s family for an forced ‘out of court’ compromise
On the political manipulation in the Badaun rape case
@indianwomenblog #nonationforwomen well, as the case broke in 2014, most political parties visited the family- made announcements and paid condolences – but in my follow up reporting trip – the family said all they want is justice and no assurance had given them that.
On the reasons for delayed justice in rape/sexual violence cases
@indianwomenblog #nonationforwomen – 1st- ‘hota hai’ attitude. Not taking crimes against women with the seriousness that it requires. Reason is patriarchal mindset. 2nd botched investigation. 3rd social stigma n forcing the survivor’s family to compromise.
On how victim blaming has tainted the Badaun rape case
@indianwomenblog Well, it changed the public discourse around the case to a large extent which made things difficult for the parents, matter is in court right now n the survivor’s parents are fighting their case against all odds.
On what needs to be done to make India a nation for all women
@indianwomenblog That’s a tough one ! Well, i guess, work on slowly changing the patriarchal mindset of people in society. So that everyone can realize that women are equal citizens who deserve to live – with dignity – and have a right to equal opportunities in all fields. #nonationforwomen