A 25-year old American woman was raped yesterday in Hyderabad. Admittedly, it has shocked the residents of the neighbourhood, which is considered a swanky, elite and safe area in the city. The police are still trying to figure out how, in the middle of the night, the rapist entered the 1st floor section of the house where the girl lived, and raped her at gunpoint.
The very thought that someone can invade one's privacy (in all senses of the term) this way makes me shudder. Imagine, you are sleeping soundly in what you feel is your safe haven, your comfortable space, and suddenly you are assailed in this horrific manner! I hope and pray that the girl gets through this terrible time and that the animal who did this is caught and dealt with as soon as possible.
While reading the newspaper report in the Times of India, though, one thing popped out at me and has been irking me ever since. In this article, the last sentence states:
"Her house owners said they had never had a problem with her conduct and that she always paid her rent on time."
I fail to understand the need for that sentence. I mean, this woman has been brutally raped; how does her 'conduct' or her ability to pay the rent on time matter here? This looks like the beginning of a classic 'blame the victim' scenario. So, if the house owners 'had a problem with her conduct' or if she didn't pay her rent on time, would that somehow justify the rape? If not, what is the point of this sentence? Maybe the article writer had one, but it is not clear to me.