The recent rape and murder in Telangana has enraged the public who have raised the demand for death sentence for rapists and stricter laws, NT KURIOCITY asked a few Goans what kind of strict laws they think should be enforced to instil the fear of punishment, and how the government can assure women’s safety?

If all men are born free, how is it that all women are born slaves? A dress code for women will not create a safer society, not for women, not even for men, and definitely not for children. Restricting women’s freedom and mobility will not reduce crimes against them. It will marginalise women further, tilt the balance of power further in favour of men and weaken society. What India needs now is not revenge, but to address the many underlying issues that are perpetuating endemic violence against women. The laws and justice system must be reformed, and the definition of rape, which is currently far from adequate, should be amended. The Indian police force has to be better trained to deal with survivors of sexual violence, and there is a need to develop support systems for survivors. Many women are reluctant to report crimes, fearing humiliation and degrading treatment by the police, or the social stigma that comes from society at large. The government should take action against police officers who refuse to register FIRs of sexual assault. Political leaders who hesitate in taking action against the police should be made to suffer the consequences of their inaction. Death penalty should be introduced for the rapists.

Joylan Fernandes, Tivim

The accused should be hanged to death within a week or should be given instant death penalty rather than keeping them in the prison for years. Also having a strict law will not help. The government should initiate more safety for women, day and night, so that there is no room for such cases to occur.

Dinesh Nirawdekar, professor, St Xavier’s College, Mapusa

Rape needs to be stopped not by just implementing rules, but by gruesomely punishing the culprits instantly. The law needs to create fear of the consequences of this inhumane activity. Stopping the incidences of rape in our country is not easy, it is the harsh reality. But can laws alone prevent such incidents? Rape can be stopped when men are raised right. Don’t teach your daughter how to dress, teach your son how to respect. Rape will stop only when men are taught to consider women as equal human beings.

Sybil Pereira, Goa University

There must be special system for these types of cases in which justice must be given within two to three days of the crime. When found guilty they must be shot in different parts of body (so they know what pain they have inflected) and left to die in front of people (so 10 more people are afraid of even thinking about it). Government must ensure that all companies take care for female employees’ transport for night shifts and counselling must be done according to the area. If any women face any problem or inappropriate behaviour, strict action must be taken.

Disha Patil, Agnel Institute of Technology be and Design, Assagao

The incident that happened with young doctor in Telangana has put the entire nation and humanity to shame. The horrific assault led to huge protests in the state and a massive outpouring of anger across India. These types of people (the accused) need to be brought out in public and lynched. Rape cases should be tackled in Fast Track Courts so that the culprits can be punished as soon as possible. Laws have been made, but they are not being implemented, for example: Nirbhaya’s case. The culprits must be hanged till death.

Kishan Mangeshkar, Don Bosco College of Engineering, Margao

I think sex education should be made compulsory in school and also parents and teachers should talk about it openly rather than considering it a taboo. The government should understand the reason behind the rape happened or we should try to understand the rapist’s mentality, psychology and try to fix it. Death is definitely not a punishment to be given to rapists. Very harsh torture punishment like cutting the tongue, cutting hands or legs should be meted out to deter future cases.

Nilangi Netravalkar, Panaji

I am deeply shaken by the horrific incident with the young doctor in Telangana. There cannot be anything less that death penalty for rapists. They don’t deserve to stay in society. People with such pervert mindsets are a curse to humanity and should be eliminated as soon as possible. No mercy should be shown to such devils. Having so called strict laws are not enough, authorities should implement them effectively so that culprits knows the repercussions of such acts.

Yash Dessai, Don Bosco College of Engineering, Margao

With the rise in rape cases, where a woman can become a victim in the simplest of ways, every step I take, anywhere I go, I am constantly struck by the fear that I might be next. In a democracy, why should I be afraid? We speak of independent women yet such fearful crimes make us more dependent. Why isn’t this issue a priority for the government? I feel a special law should be formulated condemning the rapists and awarding them with immediate death sentence. Such a heinous crime can’t be punished with anything less. The criminals should be tried in a Fast Track Court (FTC) and the death sentence given immediately. Their death sentence should be widely publicised so that a fear is instilled in anyone who thinks of committing this hideous crime, be it in any part of the country.

Delia Cardozo, assistant professor, Dhempe College of Arts and Science, Miramar

I live in Varca and the buses here are very slow. For example: for a 15-minute distance it takes almost 40 minutes for the bus in the evening. Borda buses are the worst as while returning they take half an hour for the 12-minute distance. And last stop of the Borda bus is the market so the ones who have to go to bus stand have to catch another bus from market or wait for Guirdolim, Chandor or Curtorim buses which are even less in frequency than Borda.

Alyssa Martins, Parvatibai Chowgule College of Arts and Science, Margao

I am from Carambolim and there are a lot of problems I face travelling by bus like the packed buses and no one cares who is standing or sitting; anyone sits on the reserved seats of senior citizen and they don’t even get up from that seat when they see a senior citizen. Also, buses don’t have fix timings. Conductors push into the crowd and come to collect transportation charges. Some men take advantage of the crowed and even try to harass women or college girls.

Jane Pereira, Don Bosco College, Panaji