On 20 March 2020, the four adult convicts of the 2012 Delhi rape case were executed after a long debate regarding the punishment for their crime. The Delhi rape case, unlike others, was also given to the fast track court because of the worldwide outrage India received in its aftermath. Otherwise, most rape survivors rarely speak out and if they do, their lives are often endangered and threatened, depending on the severity of the case itself and the perpetrator's rank in the society. Through the analysis of Aniruddha Roy Chowdhury's, 2016 film Pink, and Ajay Bahl's film Section 375 (2019), this chapter explores the different ways in which mainstream Hindi cinema deals with such questions, especially in its depictions of courts. Both these films foreground India's contemporary cultural systems of fear that silence the rape survivors. They also imply that in the court cases, unless the specific court case faces intense global publicity, as was the case of the Delhi gang rape, rape survivors will never want to speak out. Moreover, the rape survivors will also hesitate to file a First Information Report (FIR) – a document that records crimes by the police against their perpetrators – limiting any possibility for justice for them. The laws surrounding rape cases are obscure and complex and finding justice for a rape victim (unless it is on a global level) is not an easy venture in India. At the time of the #metoo movement, the rape laws in India are not designed in such a way to arguably encourage victim-survivors to speak up. Instead, if rape survivors do decide to confront their perpetrators, they not only face ostracisation from society but also the danger of losing loved ones and endanger their lives as well.
Shrivastava, N. (2022). The insidious culture of fear in Indian courts. In M. S. Schotanus (Ed.), Gender violence, the law, and society (pp. 79-89). Emerald Publishing. Doi: 10.1108/978-1-80117-127-420221007
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