The current row over comedian Agrima Joshua’s (old) video and its viral aftermath has once again highlighted some very important questions:
Is it acceptable to issue a public threat to anyone?
How much ever ‘insulted’ your sentiments are, is it acceptable for anyone to issue a rape threat publicly?
And, the most important question perhaps, how does someone issue a rape threat on a public platform, through a video, and not get arrested for it immediately?
While the Agrima incident took a nasty turn because of the level of filthy abuse that perpetrator Shubham Mishra spewed in a video on his Instagram page, what about the kind of abuse that other women, especially those in the public eye, face everyday, in the form of online comments?
Case in point is Shaheen Bhatt.
Alia Bhatt's sister, who is known to talk openly about online bullying, exposed some of the online harassers on her Instagram page. She shared screenshots of rape and death threats that she received online.
She wrote on her Instagram page:
"I will NOT protect your identity. I will use all legal recourse available to take action. If you think you can't be located because you think your account is anonymous, please think again -- IP addresses are easily trackable. You are not invisible. Harassment is a crime."
Shaheen is keen to take legal action against the perpetrators. Her sister, Pooja Bhatt also came out in support of her and spoke against online bullying.
But whether it is a viral video or an anonymous online comment — are rape threats taken seriously by our society or by our authorities?
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