In Ghaziabad, a 21 year old woman named Gulista was subjected to an acid attack few days back. She is admitted in the ICU of Safdarjung hospital, Delhi, and is suffering serious burn injuries. Gulista got engaged recently and was just about to tie the nuptial knot in April. She was attacked at her home by unidentified men who poured a 1 litre bottle of concentrated acid on her. The police has lodged an FIR under IPC section 326-A and investigation is underway to trace the culprits. It is being speculated that the attacker must be someone known to the girl or the family.
Acid attack, also known as vitriolage, on women by sadistic, psychopathic men, are amongst the most horrendous crimes against women in India. It depicts how deep-rooted misogyny and abhorrence for independent women is in our society.
More than 85% victims of acid attacks are women, and most of the perpetrators are so-called jilted lovers whose overtures were not reciprocated or outrightly rejected. This hurts their toxic masculinity and spawns murderous rage, intensified by already existing social contempt for women. In 2013 Indian Penal Code was amended to make punitive action for acid attacks more stringent. Easy availability of acids, mainly used in jewellery polishing, also has to be curtailed. Acid attacks are amongst the most reprehensible of all crimes and should be treated on par with homicide because it leads to maiming, disfiguration of face and body parts, social isolation, loss of livelihood, and prolonged torment and suicidal depression in the victim.