Monday, 16 December 2013
I am not saying that just because I live in Delhi, the brutality of the gang rape hit me harder than any other woman in this world. But you know something happened last night which sort of made me feel the brutality a little bit closer than it ever had. As someone who has moved a zillion times on Delhi Roads, when I read the name of the Bus Stop from where she boarded the bus to the route it took while the horror was being committed, I sort of connect instantly. I have never personally stood at that particular place and I am sure whoever is there everyday, even now, must be remembering her each time.
But last night, just as my phone showed the time as 00:00 and thus the date changed, through a strange coincidence, I was getting down the flyover which ends at the place this girl was thrown by the monsters, along with her friend. I was in my car, secure with my husband. There was a lot of traffic (it is a busy road even at midnight), my children were sleeping at home safely, my parents had just messaged me goodnight, my brother and his wife, who I had spent the evening with, were constantly in touch with me on my phone if we have reached or crossed the toll etc.. But just as we got down the decline, I was fully aware that this was the exact spot where she was abandoned to die, exactly an year back. I did become part of the National outrage post this crime and expressed solidarity and anger and irritation and helplessness. But somewhere, like everyone else, I had moved on. I celebrated my children's birthdays, I took three holidays, I danced crazy at parties, I laughed my eyes out with friends, I married off my brother and did many other things which a normal person had done, is doing and will do.
Why then when I turned my gaze to the left to once see that place, something stopped inside my heart. Did I feel shallow? Scared? Hurt? Shameful? Guilty? I have no idea. All I felt was a numbness. I immediately turned to look at my husband who is the guy I share my life with. There was nothing unusual on his face. He looked at peace as we would soon reach home. I took solace in his calmness and decided to not share the sudden hollowness with him. The moment passed and I was soon worried about usual things like why is he driving so fast and how will I wake up early tomorrow morning. Did my connection with that horror emerge just because I was at that exact place where that girl was?
Yes. It was a way to let the woman in me know that this city could let me down at any point of time leaving my kids, husband, brother and parents totally helpless. It was a way to remind the mother in me that I am raising two sons who I have to teach to respect the gender their mother belonged to. It was a way to rekindle the human in me to stop for a minute and experience the enormity of this date.
Spare a minute to shut your eyes and say a small prayer for that family who have lost one of them because a bunch of fellas decided to do so!