The Office party was going on great.
They were all present. The top management, the middle management team along with their spouses.
It was an annual thing, nothing unusual, but today was special.
Their Chairman was going to announce something. Maybe it was a new deal, which would mean a lot of bonuses. They didnt know. But it was going to be BIG.
While, they waited for the Chairman to reveal the surprise, they were busy with their usual mingling and scoring brownie points for their upcoming promotions.
And thats when she walked into the room. Draped in a crimson saree and a backless blouse, a vision of loveliness.
There was a pin drop silence in the room, as everyone turned to look at her. She stood straight and tall as she walked right to the center of the room.
The voices of gossip mongers started in hushed tones.
“Isnt this the same lady….”
“Hey, I know her, she was on TV”
“Yes Yes, she was the one who was gang raped around six years ago. It was all over the news”
And then there were the voices of concern and sympathy.
“Poor woman, I pity her”
“Haan yaar, bechari ki izzat lut gayi, kahi muh dikhane ke layak nahi rahi wo”
“You know, I worry about her husband and kids, how do they manage to move in the society”
“But hey, you have to appreciate the husband haan, even after all this he still accepted her”
The voices stopped as soon as they started, when the Chairman cleared his throat.
He was standing besides the gorgeous woman.
“Ladies and Gentlemen”, he said in his booming voice, “I would like to introduce you to your next CEO. Please join me in welcoming her”
The room clapped politely despite the surprised looks on their faces.
The Chairman, having done the introductions, slowly walked back to the bar to get himself a drink when one of the senior management person tapped him on his shoulder.
“Excuse me, Sir”, he said, “Do you know who she is?”
The Chairman smiled, “Yes, I do. Why?”
“Sir, you do know that she is the same rape victim from the Kamala Mills case, right?”, he persisted.
The Chairman’s smile became a grin now, “I know that she is an MBA from Harvard with a 25 years experience in our Industry. Her being raped six years ago was her misfortune, not her qualification.”
I have always wondered why a Rape survivor has to live as in seclusion.
There is no other crime in the world in which the victim has to live as if she was the criminal.
Rape survivors are bravehearts. They have gone through one of the most traumatic experiences anyone could ever undergo and still have the courage to stand up and face the world.
Let’s stop secluding the Rape Survivors but let’s admire them instead of shaming them. Let’s support them to live a normal life rather than sympathise with them overtly and keep them in a constant victim mode.
Disclaimer: A woman’s izzat is not between her legs, but it is in her spine that keeps her back straight and her head held high while facing the world.