Issue 12  •  Spring 2013

Woman in India Allegedly Burns Her Rapist Alive in a House Fire
Posted on  April 11th, 2013
by Justina Tran

It seems that citizens in India have recently made great strides to take action against sexual assault. However, is there such a thing as going too far? According to Huffington Post, an unnamed woman in India reportedly burned her rapist Bhola Thakur alive in a house fire. The woman’s neighbors noted to the Times of India that Thakur harassed the woman for several months previously.

Thakur broke into the woman’s house and raped her. The Hindustan Times reported that a police offer said that Thakur was “so drunk he [fell asleep in her house after committing the crime.”

Although she thought about committing suicide out of shame, the woman decided to kill her rapist instead. While Thakur was doused in kerosene  the woman lit the house on fire and exited it. Thakur, a man previously accused of numerous cases involving public sexual assault, died in the fire.

The woman confessed to the Times of India, “I have no regret that I burned Bhola alive. I put kerosene on him before he raped me, which I could not stop, and burned him out of revenge.” (Seems like she has no remorse whatsoever.) Consequently, the woman is being investigated for murder. Moreover, Thakur’s widow filed a lawsuit against the unnamed woman.

There’s controversy in India regarding this incident since it is being treated as a murder case instead of one of rape. People believe that the woman acted out of self-defense which is something the law protects even if the attacker dies.

I don’t believe the woman deserves a harsh punishment for what she did. However, I don’t condone her violence, either. Perhaps she wanted to take matters into her own hands because the justice system may be inefficient or too slow. Either way, I think it’s safe to say that sexual assault is a real problem that needs to end somehow.

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