The series of rapes in India—the latest involving an American student, which comes just weeks after two separate attacks against two 5-year-olds, one of whom died from her injuries—is prompting calls from feminists that India's rulers need to do more to fight the country's deep-seated patriarchy. But as Shikha Dalmia observes, the Indian government has been following the feminist script for nearly half a century with little effect. It would serve the cause of gender equity far better if it simply did its job and provided safe streets, timely justice, and other basic public goods for everyone. The absence of such amenities that are taken for granted in the West is arguably the strongest pillar of patriarchy in India.
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