India is a country of mixed cultures and heritages. Our country is an epitome of equality and bonds of love and affection. The adage ‘Unity in Diversity’ aptly suits our nation. But, the unfortunate thing is that all these things are now becoming matters of the past. As we are heading towards a future that is darkened with things like religion and caste, killing someone in the name of prestige is gaining precedence over love and affection towards others.
Honour Killing in India:
The frequency of honour killings have been on the rise in the northern regions of India, with the states of Punjab, Haryana and UP topping the list. These honour killings are directed towards women or girls, and are a result of marriages that happen without the permission of the family, or those that happen with the girl and boy belonging to two different caste groups or religions. In contrast to this, honour killings are close to null in the south Indian states as well as north western states of Gujarat and Maharashtra. Statistics have given extremely painful and sad results. Over 1000 young people are killed in India in the name of honour killing
every year. Punjab has got the credit of having the highest number of honour killings in the country, with 34 honour killings being reported in the state between 2008 and 2010.
Khap Panchayats and Honour Killing:
Khap panchayats are self driven setups that have gained wicked popularity for having paved a way for honour killing. Boycotting families from villages that chose to allow their children’s marriages to their choice, supporting the families in honour killing are some of the naïve activities of these so called panchayats. The unlawful laws of the Kap panchayats are imposed through social boycotts where the victims are killed or forced to commit suicide. All these inhumane activities are done in the name of brotherhood and honour. Love marriages are considered taboo in these areas, which is highly unfortunate.
Few Examples of Inhumanity:
In the town of Jhajjar in Haryana, a father allegedly strangled his 21 year old daughter to death just for the trivial reason that she was in love with a guy.
In Uttar Pradesh, a youth who was opposed to his sister’s love beheaded her and threw her head in her lover’s house. This shows how inhumane and devilish one can become when their minds are possessed with spirits like religion and caste.
In yet another brutal act of tyranny, a man in Rajasthan had beheaded her daughter with a sword. The killer father was found roaming on the streets holding the severed head of his daughter.
Where are we heading?
65 years of independence, development in the fields of science, technology, business, films and sports, etc. and yet, there are these dumb practices that threaten to push our nation backward to a few million years. Our nation’s dignity is being poisoned by religion and caste differences. People, who seem to be modern and broad minded, aren’t really so. Though honour killings are not prevalent in cities and metros, still love marriages are looked down. People tend to allow religion and caste to dominate the very meaning of love, which is a universal language. This mindless practice is not confined to a particular class. Both the educated and the uneducated, the rich and the poor, have this habit of honour killing in practice.
What should be done to stop Honour Killing in India ?
The laws are there. The rules are there. But all those aren’t stopping the people from becoming merciless killers. Their fanaticism for religion and caste makes them heartless tyrants, and they don’t care for any punishment that they are going to get. What needs to be done is not to look at the punishment side, as that is not going to shake the criminals in any way. The best way to tackle this religious epidemic is to create awareness amongst the people, and educate them; as the ones who are into this barbaric act are the villagers and the uneducated. All these people are living in the mask of insanity; insanity born out of religion and caste. And only proper awareness and education can bring about a change for the better.