By Kalana Krishantha
Regardless of our belief, the rape culture of Sri Lanka has been increasing day by day. The wave of gang rapes has been intensifying for years. In 2017, Sabaragamuwa Province Governor President’s Counsel Marshal Perera openly said it was a disturbing matter that a rape of a woman takes place every four hours in Sri Lanka according to Police statistics. It is sad to happen this in a country that carries the reputation of the country which produced the first woman prime minister and the first woman president in the world.
Statistics supporting the story
The Care International did a research on sexual violence in 2013, covering the four districts: Colombo, Nuwara Eliya, Batticaloa and Hambantota in Sri Lanka, they interviewed 1658 men and 653 women as a part of the research. The findings have remained terrible since that time but related ministry officers have still been unable to take necessary actions against the crime. This research revealed that 33% of men, at least once in their married life were sexually or physically violent with their partner and 17% of males have contributed to at least one act of sexual violence against women including a rape.
The most recent incident is the rape of nurse who worked at a private hospital at Narahenpita. She has been allegedly raped on four occasions in different areas of Sri Lanka. Four suspects were arrested by Narahenpita Police and one was a doctor while another one was an engineer. The question is, why are the so-called erudite people behaving in such a way?
Inside the minds of the criminals
Psychologists have concluded that media is one of the main contributing factors for the increasing rate of gang rape in Sri Lanka. Clinical Psychologist and Founder of the Arnaha Centre for Wellbeing Kavitha Amaratunga said that the media had been contributing a lot to the increasing tendency of gang rapes owing to unethical reporting. “The way the media reports an incident means a lot to the audience. The uncensored and exaggerated reporting of such incidents paves the way for the spread of those things within the country in a rapid manner,” she explained.
The suppressed aggression from the was also recognised as one of the possible reasons. “The 30-year-long war is over. During that time, people directed their aggression towards their enemies in war. But, after it finished, the aggression was suppressed and now has been released in various ways and gang rape is one of the ways of releasing their suppression. Although the war is finished, Governments have still not been able to initiate a proper plan of rehabilitation. This can also be considered as another factor.” When queried as to whether culture contributes to sexual suppression, she said that the harmful influence of culture has been on the wane but that there is still some remaining influence.
Psychological interventions as a possible solution
While suggesting solutions, she added that the support of the Government should be increased for psychological counselling, government hospitals should have more opportunity for psychological interventions. “Currently, in Government hospitals, there is very little attention paid to psychological counselling, it should be changed. Apart from this, discussion forums, awareness programs on mental health and sexual education-based programs should be held throughout the country,” Amaratunga added.
Sri Lanka is a country which was civilized 2500 years ago. While boasting about their long civilization, politicians and religious leaders have often failed to take notice of the current situation of the country and what goes on under the carpet. The country which was once renowned as the pearl of Asia has now become the country of sexual maniacs who have made the country unsafe and uninhabitable for women. The time has come to implement the necessary reforms and initiate psychological interventions in this sick society lest it won’t be long before Sri Lanka will be abhorred by its own citizens and the rest of the world.
This article was originally published in SL guardian
Featured Image Source: Max Pixel
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