Suja Jones is the mother of a child who was raped allegedly by her own father. The daughter was 3 years old. When the mother, Suja questioned the daughter, she said that the one responsible was the father. Thereafter, the mother rightfully filed a police case against her then husband. But justice seemed elusive. The mother was almost treated like an accused. About the daughter, there were two fingers inserted into the vagina of the child to determine if she was really raped. The first time, illegally, the second time, legally digitally penetrated. Suja is a friend. She tells me that the squeals of her child still give her nightmares. But that’s not where her horrors end. She has been subject to ridicule and abuse. Every accused should get the right to defend themselves, even if the truth is apparent – a 3 year old was raped and Suja tells me that she pointed out to her father.
As a prime accused in this case, it is apparent that he should not get any visitation rights. But he has appealed. Suja called me just now and she was inconsolable and scared. Her ex husband wants to spend Christmas with their three children, including the daughter, whose rape he is being tried for. Meanwhile, since her husband, is a French counsellate employee, is gaining sympathy and claiming that he has been framed. He is wealthy, she is not. She is working hard to make ends meet. She is working hard to ensure that her children have a life of dignity. Her children and she are undergoing psychological therapy to deal with the biggest tragedy of their lives. They have come a long way. Three years is a long time. But her wounds are as sour as it was that day. Isnt it common sense that a person accused of committing rape would not be given visitation rights, at least, till the judgement? The truth is, that the judge has already given the order , giving him visitation rights. In a land where injustice thrives in a web of lies, and where the perception is that everything can be bought, financial challenges could leave the victims most vulnerable.
I believe that the rights of men need to be protected as much as the rights of women. I believe the accussed should be given the right to defend himself. But I also believe, that the accussed is having a case of Rape against him. He should not be given visitation rights for his child.
What do you think?
P.S. I take her name openly because she is googleable and She, like my friend, Suzette Jordan, has waived off, her right to anonymity.
Writer: Harish Iyer