Ever since the December brutal rape in a moving bus in Delhi, the media has been highlighting the rapes that are continuing to take place all over the country. It seems the revulsion that society felt and the spate of protests that followed are not having the desired effect on persons who intend to continue raping. However two worrisome developments seem to have taken place. Both are a serious cause of worry and are indicating atactical shift by the rapists.

Due to the considerable attention that the Delhi rape attracted, and the awakening that took place in large segments of the society, there is a significant sense of awareness in the young females as well as the people in public areas.There is the possibility of increased police patrolling also taking place. Further the unfortunate rape victims are now to a very large extent not afraid of going to the police to lodge their complaints. Also there is a growing section of our society which is willing to be now sympathetic to the victim unlike till recently when she would be ostracised.

Increasing number of young females are now more capable of handling themselves if faced by a would be rapist. This enhanced confidence has forced the rapists to change their strategy. As is becoming evident they are now raping increasingly younger and younger girls. It is reported that girls as young as three to five years are becoming a victim of their lust. Another associated shift is that they after raping the hapless victims are now murdering them, so that they cannot be identified. Obviously such young girls can neither resist the rape nor their being killed.

It is therefore clear that while  rightful attention and justified hue and cry was raised after the Delhi rape it has however made the rapists change their attention to the girl child with disastrous consequences. It calls for increased vigilance in schools and playgrounds. It also calls fo both increased and strict vigilance by parents and school teachers and other elders in the society. Young girls of school going age have to be sensitised to how to behave with strangers and also who is inappropriately touching them so that they can report it to their parents or teachers.The school authorities must take strict action against their staff who indulge in such practices and not brush it under the carpet to save the school's reputation.

It is very important to save our very young girls from the savages who have now shifted their focus on them to satisfy their evil urges and also kill them to remove any trace of identification. Sad but the challenge has to be accepted by every one in the society. Blaming government is not going to solve the matter. Each one of us has to play our role in protecting the young girls.


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