Background: Haryana has yet again witnessed atrocities on Dalits and women. This is not new and has a long history in Haryana – Gohana, Dulina and more recently Mirchpur, is some of the more recent instances of caste violence. Rape cases in Haryana in the last one month have tolled 19 till today. The most recent is a case of gang rape in the ‘world class city’ of Gurgaon of a 6 years old minor. Out of these 19 cases, 12 are Dalit women and 3 are minors. This last case reported is not even 40 km away from the national Capital of Delhi. The State is responsible for the protection of its citizens and their right to live freely in a democratic society, free of oppression on the basis of gender and caste.
Rape against women has historically been used as a demonstration of male power over women, as a way of ‘putting them in their place’ by restricting their mobility and controlling the use of their bodies. In Haryana rape is not only used to exert power of men over women, but also to assert caste dominance. This violence is at times justified in the name of honour, where battles over caste honour are fought over the bodies of women, and at others in the name of saving culture.