Or is death worse than rape?
Until recently, many Indians thought a rape victim’s life was ruined (barbad ho gayee) and the only way out was to pressurize her to kill herself, or for her family members to murder her.
If the victim and her family dared to hope to move on (without any hopes of the rapists being punished, because traditionally we punished rape victims not rapists) they had to make sure nobody learnt about the crime. (Obviously, this was extremely convenient for sexual criminals)
The idea of punishing a rapist is a modern idea. Many Indians (specially rapists and misogynists) are still not able to understand/digest this.
But now that rape is being seen as a crime against a woman and not as a crime against Patriarchy (i.e. not as stealing of her honor or virginity) – would you still say that a rape is the worst thing that could happen to a woman?
Is it possible for an Indian rape victim (and the society) to see rape as a horrible, traumatic, brutal crime but not as something for the victim to be ashamed of, as an end of happiness, honor, life, opportunities and dignity for the victim?
As of now, it seems, we see it as worse than death for the victim, but still make excuses for the rapists.
Edited to ask: Would you say loss of sight or limb is worse than a rape?