Nirbhaya Documentary Ban

The following article is based on my own interpretation of the said events. Any material borrowed from published and unpublished sources has been appropriately referenced. I will bear the sole responsibility for anything that is found to have been copied or misappropriated or misrepresented in the following post.

Shishir Sachdev, MBA 2014-16, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur


16th December 2012- A day when a 23 year old medical student was raped by 6 men in a moving bus, is probably the most shameful act of cruelty witnessed by the nation of a billion. What followed after that was something that India had never seen. Agitation, protests, cases, allegations, trials and what not, the situation was a complete chaos.  2 years down the line, things haven’t changed much. There are still numerous incidents of crimes against women that we get to hear in the news every other day. Delhi has earned a new name as the rape capital of India.

Recently, BBC created a documentary of the incident showcasing the views and opinions of almost everyone related to the incident- Jyoti’s parents, friends, lawyers and the accused. The video immediately went viral and all sorts of reactions started pouring in from all corners of the country. For the first time, something of this sort was happening in India. But, the Indian Government had other plans. It banned the documentary from immediate effect citing the derogatory comments of the accused and the lawyers involved in the case. This step taken by the government did not go well with most. People reacted angrily and demanded to uplift the ban but had no success. There were outrageous comments and views expressed by influencial people like Kirron Kher, Javed Akhtar in the Lok Sabha against the ban.

More important than on whether the documentary should be allowed on social media or not, is the fact that what the people said in the documentary is what we need to ponder upon. Views like girls should not be allowed to wear western clothes, carry a mobile phone or hang out with male friends is what the lawyers and the accused expressed in the documentary and it truly was a very shameful thing to see.

After a couple of days, activist Ketan Dixit was booked by the police for showing the documentary in slums. While on one hand, the government promises better laws, strict actions and good governance, on the other hand, it curbs the basic right of individuals- the right to express his/her views.

After all these controversial and disturbing actions taken by some of the top ministers of the country, one feels the need to question the validity of the so called democracy of the country.





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