“India’s government, under intense pressure to respond to December’s deadly gang rape of a 23-year-old woman on a Delhi bus, has brought forward a new law with tougher sentences for sexual crimes and a broader range of offences, including stalking and sex trafficking.
But the law doesn’t go nearly far enough; it doesn’t even begin to address the shocking sexism of India’s male-dominated institutions. Meanwhile, a new report details the widespread and horrific sexual abuse of children of both sexes in India, and the government’s failure to prevent and punish it.
This momentum must lead to better laws and tougher enforcement, but those alone won’t be enough. What hope is there of progressive laws when there are so many politicians with criminal, rape and sexual assault charges? Only a comprehensive, long-term public education campaign can force the full “mind-set revolution” needed to end the horrific and ongoing victimisation of women and children.”