Q: In Bihar, women are standing up for Indian daughters’ safety, because so many girls are being molested and killed all over north India. Do you attribute these atrocities to the BJP and Hindutva? Is caste hegemony playing a part in it? Will the legalization of capital punishment help? Do you think violence women represents a cultural degradation of our society?
A: I think this problem exists not only in north India, but also all over the country. It so happens that in the North it gets highlighted much more than in other places. These kinds of atrocities are not beyond our understanding and reason- ing. We do still cherish moral values and ethical values like the values of life. I don’t attribute such atrocities to the BJP or the RSS. I attribute it to the social degradation of society. The atrocities are committed, especially on women, by people who have lost all moral values. It is happening to weaker sections, the oppressed groups like the dalits. The oppressors, definitely upper caste, are in a way taking advantage of their helplessness. Capital punishment will certainly help the oppressed, be- cause it will send a strong warning signal. If justice is done to the victims, then people will think twice before committing these atrocities. I fully agree with the opinion that there is a degradation of cultural values in our society. Modern training is such that values are given little importance. Exposure to social media, exposure to crime, exposure to discrimination and exposure to intoxicants, all that is increasing. I think it is what leads to all the evil acts.
Abp William D’Souza, SJ