‘One day, I’ll tell my girl her father was a rapist’

Unwed mother of 6-year-old says she will never agree to mediation suggested by Madras High Court judge

Written by Arun Janardhanan | Chennai | Updated: June 28, 2015 11:01 am
rape, crime, rape victim, victim marriage convict, 2008 rape, Mahila Court, Cuddalore, Cuddalore news, nation news, news The 21-year-old rape victim with her daughter at her village near Virudhachalam in Cuddalore, Tamil Nadu. (Source: Express Photo)

For four days, the 21-year-old woman, an unwed mother of a six-year-old girl, has known no peace. Anger and despair have been her only companions in the single-room tenement she calls home, in a village some 80 km from Cuddalore.

“Did the judge ever think how I suffered all these years? He knew I had a baby from that rape. And now this single order of his wants me to go through that suffering again.”

The judge she refers to is Justice D Devadass of Madras High Court who, citing religion and its capacity for reconciliation, last Tuesday referred the case of a minor’s rape for mediation between the victim and accused.

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The victim, who was 14 when she was raped in 2008, has since lost her parents and is the mother of a child born after the rape.

Justice Devadass’s order came on an appeal and a bail plea filed by the accused, V Mohan, who was convicted and sentenced to seven years and was slapped a fine of Rs 2 lakh by a Mahila Court in Cuddalore in 2014. He has not served his term. Two of his associates were charged with lesser offences.

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Claiming that a similar case which he had referred for mediation was near a “happy conclusion,” (the accused had agreed to marry the victim), Justice Devadass, in his order, said: “In the facts and circumstances, the case before us is a fit case for attempting compromise between the parties. ‘Mediation’ mode is best suited to them.”

But the victim says she will never agree to a settlement. “I will fight it out. My entire life. I will show my daughter the way I struggled and fought to survive.”

“If I go for a settlement, one day my child will question me for taking up his offer of money. If I agree to his offer, may be we will get something. But what will be her future… being brought up as the daughter of a rapist. Even if her father is a rapist, she will realise one day that her mother struggled for her. She will learn it the hard way. That will make her a good woman,” she said.

She can never forget that summer afternoon of 2008. Two days before her Class X examinations, an undergraduate student assaulted her.

“He added drugs to a cold drink and raped me. We knew each other and had common friends. After I narrated this to my parents, he threatened them. My father was attacked. He (the rapist) pressured me to go for an abortion. He kept denying his role until the DNA report came in. That led to his conviction,” she said.

“The entire village boycotted us when they learnt of the rape. Many of my relatives and friends stopped speaking to us. My parents questioned Mohan and were attacked. After that, I delivered a baby. She is now six years old. I was all alone these years. I go out to work as a porter when I have no other option. I worked with a textile firm in Tirupur for six months. Now my brother, who is a B.Com graduate, works as a porter to bring some money.”

“It was unfair on the part of the judge to give such a judgment without seeking my opinion. He forgot that I was the victim… After putting me into this ordeal for seven years, all of a sudden he (the rapist) agrees to marry me. All he wants is to step out of prison by agreeing to mediation,” she said.

“Only those who live here and see my plight understand the kind of problems I have undergone… There are several ways to make money. But you can’t buy dignity. Isn’t this order, without seeking my opinion, now asking me to place my self-respect at the mercy of the man who raped me? How can I have a life with him? I can only request the top judge (Chief Justice) to cancel this order.”

She says one day she will tell her daughter who she is. “Whenever she asks me about her father, I tell her that she doesn’t have one. One day, when she reaches that age, I will tell her that her father was a rapist.”

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  1. J
    Jai Kumar
    Jul 11, 2015 at 2:39 pm
    What kind of people become judges This is not Afghanistan or stan.
    Reply
    1. S
      Smoker
      Jun 28, 2015 at 12:49 pm
      Is the judge gone mad?, Dignity is not negotiable neither the crime.
      Reply
      1. J
        Justice
        Jun 28, 2015 at 11:51 am
        please make sure to give justice to the girl whose life turned upside down because of some trash... Make it that at least he serves his punishment and she can move ahead with the daughter...Opportunities will come to you ma'm for they should...Hope you get what you want.
        Reply
        1. A
          Amar, London
          Jun 28, 2015 at 1:24 pm
          I wonder what judgement this 'judge' would have given if his daughter was the victim
          Reply
          1. A
            Anangsen
            Jun 28, 2015 at 1:36 pm
            So are the courts now the new Khaap Panchayats??????? Why waste so much of the taxpayer's money in maintaining such facilities, the judges's ries, housing.........just have khaaps and kangaroo courts do all the work.
            Reply
            1. A
              Antara Nandy
              Jun 28, 2015 at 6:32 pm
              This is the plight of indian women and we are colouring our FB pics in support of America. Time to do something fr India
              Reply
              1. A
                Azhar Ali
                Jun 28, 2015 at 7:41 pm
                Even with a positive consideration , the judgement ped without the victim's consent is unpalatable as she has no room to bear with a person who once raped and later left her in the lurch with a child to gone on all by herself in this cruel world. Hopefully, the victim's hope of administration of justice from the higher court will materialize.
                Reply
                1. U
                  Umesh
                  Jun 28, 2015 at 8:06 pm
                  Judge should be hanged -what kind of law is it. We are degrading our women. Sad part there is no stopping to it. Rapes, after rapes, brutal killing stilling we do not have death penalty . Then we have stupid lawmakers and court systems-
                  Reply
                  1. K
                    Karunakaran
                    Jun 28, 2015 at 6:10 am
                    The victim claims that this was a rape. And a child was born. Agree, looking after child is a burden for a single mother. But how did the rapist know that the girl/woman was ovulating precisely when he decided to rape her? Many girls/women never want to admit to this, but after puberty, when a girl ovulates, she instinctively seeks out a known male. That goes with all animal species during productive years. So, the Madras High Court has ped a reasonable judgment. A girl may be minor, but until a hundred years ago, most women married at the age of 14 and 15.
                    Reply
                    1. S
                      Sunny
                      Jun 28, 2015 at 11:34 am
                      The culprit should be served severe punishment with a yearly compensation for the two females. The judge should see to it that its implemented.
                      Reply
                      1. A
                        ANAND
                        Jul 11, 2015 at 4:44 pm
                        Just amazed by the courage of this young women. The judge needs to stripped of his job and all his previous judgments have to be relooked at. He is at best fit to be a judge in Khap panchayat and not sit in highcourt. Judges and their judgements like this would naturally bring contempt against the justice system. And if one speaks against the court they could be charged for contempt of court. The onus is on the courts to get respect from people but not through threat of contempt.
                        Reply
                        1. J
                          jyothish
                          Jun 28, 2015 at 4:22 pm
                          Sorry. This comment is not meant for above article.
                          Reply
                          1. C
                            C K
                            Jun 28, 2015 at 2:55 pm
                            I salute the Lady. How many women have the guts like her. There are news that civilian beat police, some time lawyers. Now if this is the way judges behavior, we can very soon expect reports that Judges too are beaten in public by Civilian.
                            Reply
                            1. A
                              avi
                              Jun 28, 2015 at 8:56 am
                              u are bang on.Can't agree more with you.
                              Reply
                              1. C
                                chandra
                                Jun 29, 2015 at 8:50 am
                                i think our judiciary system is not know about a woman. i my self thought that if the girl is that judge's daughter then can he/she judgement like this.
                                Reply
                                1. D
                                  Dinge
                                  Jun 29, 2015 at 4:01 am
                                  wow... way to go, girl! After reading this, this brave woman seems way more knowledgeable than the judge. Isnt it very basic on the part of judge to consult both parties, before asking for any kind of compromise? Your six year old kid would be so proud to have you as her mother. God bless!
                                  Reply
                                  1. F
                                    Francis Anthony
                                    Jun 28, 2015 at 7:22 pm
                                    You sound like a nutty professor who has completely gone senile!
                                    Reply
                                    1. F
                                      Francis Anthony
                                      Jun 28, 2015 at 12:06 pm
                                      As I read this article I could feel the anguish of this poor girl! I am amazed at the lack of empathy of the judge who decides her future without even asking for her consent! She has raised many valid questions. I hope the honorable judge can answer her!
                                      Reply
                                      1. H
                                        harkol
                                        Jun 28, 2015 at 10:12 am
                                        You are sick man. Get help.
                                        Reply
                                        1. H
                                          Hemant
                                          Jun 28, 2015 at 11:22 am
                                          No compromise , only punishment......
                                          Reply
                                          1. I
                                            iqbal
                                            Jul 10, 2015 at 10:51 am
                                            my salutations to this brave girldian express can you give me her address or account no . i will give her two laks. let her fight for her dignity.my id is there with you.please....
                                            Reply
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