The shock and outrage that the nation should have felt and expressed over the two incidents of rape on moving buses within four days in Tangail and Gazipur are apparently missing. Is the nation increasingly becoming shock-proof to such crimes? No politics nor political cadres are involved here unlike some of the incidents, one of which took place on the campus of a Sylhet college a few years back and the recent one at Chattogram University campus. Yet the nation fails to get united to raise a voice of protest and loathing against such beastly acts committed by a gang of dacoits and a few transport workers. Public buses are supposed to be secured for passengers including girls and women among them in terms of service offered, if not safe on account of safety from accidents. Now bus journeys are increasingly becoming both unsafe and insecure, particularly for women on the last count.
Ever since the rape of a paramedical student on a moving public bus in Indian capital Delhi happened, it seems sex maniacs have found girls and women travelling, especially by night on transports a soft target if time and situation permit. Quite a few such cases have taken place in different areas but Tangail, Gazipur and Ashulia of Savar areas record the majority of them. Maybe, the loneliness of forest areas during night time when the buses pass those areas allow the sex perverts to hide the crimes. Whatever may be the case, sex offenders are increasingly on their prowl for victims. This is indeed a cause for serious concern.
The country should have been in a trauma on account of the high incidence of rape. But unfortunately it does neither admit this fact nor feel the urgency of reacting to this ugly, uncivilised and demeaning sexual violence against women. Unless male members of society irrespective of their class, status and calling consider it a failure of responsibility as a citizen and unite together to resist the culprits everywhere, there is no chance of rooting out this curse. But to cure the disease, first it has to be diagnosed correctly. The case studies of the latest two incidents may be quite revealing. All the five transport workers involved in gang-raping the wife after throwing her husband from the bus at Gazipur are aged between 19 and 23. The dacoits who also gang-raped a woman are in their 20s and 30s.
Here is a socially and economically backward young band with little education but as much as can be enough to have access to the prurient digital contents thanks to electronic gadgets. In the absence of healthy entertainment like sports and traditional cultural pursuits, they spend their spare time on their electronic devices, smartphones in particular. They are influenced by explicit alien culture and contents and there is no-holds-barred access. If this continues, society will degenerate from within. Internet censorship on pornography and harmful internet games should be a way of saving the young population from the invasion of those destructive forms of entertainment. But at the same time, sports, art, music and culture have to be promoted widely to stop the rot.