Rhea Chakrobarty: Innocent or Guilty?

By Younis Ahmad Dar. Dated: 9/24/2020 9:35:40 AM

Let the court of law decide that. Our task is to guard her modesty

The popular #MeToo movement triggered a novel movement in the world, a few years ago, calling for women safety. India too came under its blanket when Tanushree Dutta accused Nana Patekar of sexual harassment. India, whose newspapers are usually jam-packed with stories of dowry, rape, etc became the epicentre of the movement with other women revealing their #MeToo stories. This set the stage for a new wave of movement for the women safety in India after the infamous Delhi rape case. All sections of the Indian society right from media, police, court, to a common man, pledged to safeguard women's dignity. Alas! their slogan was short-lived.
The high-grade adjectives prefixed to a woman's name in these movements are being shattered every day by some by news channels. The Hashtags like #justiceforwomen, & #womensafety, are being replaced by #witchhunt, & #fortunehuntress. Obscene words like mafia moll, sex bait, gold digger, & many more are also being used to demoralize a woman's name. Yes, I am talking about Rhea Chakrobarty, a woman whose character is being assassinated daily on the news channels. Following the death of famous actor, and her love, Sushant singh rajput, Rhea, is caught in a vicious hate campaign of Indian media. Thanks to this untamed campaign, Rhea's Instagram is flooded with rape, & murder threats. She & her family are caged within the four walls. When Rhea tried to speak she was shut with offensive words. For instance, when she tried to unearth election angle she was overawed by the Bihar police chief by saying she has not 'aukat' (once again her modesty was shredded) to comment on Nitin Kumar.
I am not calling her innocent, but I can't convict her like others before the outcome of the court of law. That will be insane, & inhuman. Every story has two sides and relieving both is the primary ethic of journalism. Alas! Some journalists have forgotten this lucid rule. By being biased, prefixing cheap words with Rhea's name, and declaring her guilty through their so-called 'trial by media', such journalists are ravaging journalism, & a woman's humility.
It's no rocket science that the real intention behind this absurd media trial of Sushant's case is not their love for the deceased actor, but a game to raise their TRPs. Otherwise, how come these media houses who were once critics of Sushant's movies turn his solacers overnight. Prevaricating bogus stories to boost their TRPs is not new for Indian news channels. For instance, Times Now played a great a vital role in character assassination of Sarvjeet Singh Bedi, who was falsely accused for molestation of St Stephen’s student Jasleen Kaur. (Please note Arnab Goswamy who is the frontrunner of this loathing campaign against Rhea was Times Now's editor-in-chief at that time). Although the accused got acquittal and the channel apologised to the person, the damage was done. Similarly, in high profile cases, like 2G & Talwar wherein media had convicted accused, most of them were later acquitted by the courts.
Today the same story is being replicated in the India media. Now the question arises - what if Rhea is also acquitted by the court just like these people? The answer is already giving nightmares to the runners of this campaign. But Rhea's reticence that is being ruined every day will not be restored.
To avoid such an untoward event in the future, we should let the court of law to decide the fate of Sushant’s case. As Rhea, herself said, “Don't be judges. Let the agencies do their job. Let me have a fair trial. Be responsible,” we should not take law in our hands, and save ourselves from the sin of accusing an innocent. Following this protocol, the modesty of a woman (Rhea) will be upheld, Sushant will get justice, and hate mongers will also save from the embarrassment.
The author works for Greater Kashmir and can be reached at: younis.a.dar@gmail.com



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