It is said that if you do not speak up and in support of your neighbor when he is being subjected to a crime then you are next in queue so be ready to be subjected to the same treatment.
However when it comes to an act of Sexual violence the victim seldom speaks up. She invariably keeps mum and this silence lets the offender get away scot free.
1) Speak up and report the incident for it is not just a crime against an individual but against society at large. It is wrong to have been subjected to such an act and equally wrong to keep mum.
I know that people gossip, they also point fingers but then there are those who would stand in your support. Take the incident of the Nirbhaya rape case it united not just the entire city but the entire country in support of the victim and against the offender.
Public opinion is changing and help and support can be extended only to those who ask for it.
Take for instance the law about sexual violence has been modified to make it easier for the victim to file a complaint.
As against earlier times when a victim of sexual violence had to visit the police station that was the closest to where the offense occurred, now a days she can have a FIR lodged by visiting any police station she chooses. She can also use email or call up to report the matter.
On her behalf and with her consent , a friend ,a witness or a member of the family can also file a complaint. In such cases she would need to visit the police station and lodge the FIR later.
Hiding a crime and not speaking up is an offense akin to supporting a criminal. By doing so you are only encouraging the criminal to repeat the crime and they become fearless that no action would be taken. Even the victim is always under risk of becoming a repeat victim of the crime. So it is important to register a complaint with the authorities and initiate legal action.
3) By taking legal action you are not just helping nab a criminal but also protecting other women from becoming victim to the same offender.
It mobilizes public opinion in favor of the victim and against the offenders. Every time an offender is nabbed and punished it breaks the morale of other offenders and future would be delinquents. It instills a fear of the law and makes the streets and the cities a bit more safer for every women and girls out there.
May the torch of knowledge be always be with you and keep giving you the strength to protect yourself from any harm that may be lurking out there.