The ongoing COVID-19 episode is an image of how delicate and erratic our lives can be in an irregular situation. The virus which has changed the manner by which the majority of us live, work or plays out our fundamental everyday capacities is proceeding to expand its grip at a disturbing rate with the effect being felt at different levels like on economic slowdown, hitch the legal system business disruption, trade hindrances, travel obstructions, public seclusion and so on. there are several other serious issues which are coming on our way and yes they cannot be neglected. One of them has been viral on social media with a hashtag Bois locker room.
Bois locker room was an Instagram private group of 20-24 boys from Delhi and most of them were minor school – going, boys. The main purpose of the group was to circulate pictures of girls younger to them, generally belongs to their school, body – shaming them, passing disgusting comments about their private body parts.
All this ongoing conversation was so normal among them and they were highly involved in it which was clearly visible from the screenshots. The group was initially created in the last of March and many boys became a part of it gradually.
Somehow screenshots from the group got leaked and were given to a girl from South Delhi whose pictures were being used in the group without her consent. She made another group where she with her friends decided to post these screenshots and expose the boys. After the boys came to know about this, they started threatening the girls of sharing their nude pictures, but the screenshots thereafter were posted on Instagram and went viral.
The first action was taken by the Delhi Commission for Women, Swati Maliwal, she sent a notice to Delhi Police and to Instagram asking the boys to get arrested and strict actions to be taken against them as soon as possible.
Delhi Police along with the cyber cell started investigating the matter and it came into light that mainly minor boys were a part of the group and a 15-year-old boy was arrested and also 22 more boys were identified and would be called for questioning.
Now the question arises what should be done to the boys?
What would be the punishment? Some of you might think of being put them in jail but no. These boys being minor cannot be put behind the bar.
According to the Juvenile Justice Act, 2015 which into force came on January 1st 2016. The detained accused would be produced before the Juvenile Justice Board it will decide what action would be taken.
A case was registered under Sections 465, 471 & 509 of IPC. also under Section 67 and 67a of the IT Act.
Meanwhile, during the investigation, a new twist came which turned the case into a new direction. So it was basically a screenshot of the Snapchat application, a conversation between two boys in which one of the boys was making plans of raping the girl and asking the other to do the same with him.
The shocking revelation was that it was a girl who was using a fake account (sender) and sending the messages to the boy (receiver) who negativity responded to everything which the girl asked from the fake account to him to do.
The girl was questioned for her reprobate action and it came out that she was taking a character test of the boy whom she knew from before. Further, no action was taken against the girl claiming that she is a minor and her action has no malicious intent.
New chaos was created on social media and everyone was shocked by this revelation. But everything got clarified and it came out that these are two different things,
Snapchat’s screenshot was totally different from Instagram’s Bois locker room and had nothing to do with. Despite all the hustle, one thing should be clearly understood that both cases are very serious and different in their own way. This is the current situation of the teenagers of the country, out of anxiety they do not observe the fine line between what is right and wrong.
It is not the lack of knowledge, it is the misuse of the knowledge and the technology the children are being provided to. They should also know that the body of every individual is to be respected physical and also verbally. It is not so damn cool to say on even think anything against an individual’s dignity. they are very well taught about the human body its parts and applications, what lack is the basic sex education in the system.
And by the system, I strongly believe that it should be started from home. Families should sit together and discuss these facts which every teenager must be told before they set up anything in the mind. Parents must educate their children about sex and various other issue related to puberty and adolescence rising curiosity at a certain age in children’s mind, and they opted for other sources to know about it and develop a totally different mindset which can be very heinous and disgraceful turned out be nasty for the society. And the best example is we all have seen.
The Bois locker room is so shameful to reproduce. On the contrary, girls are no longer behind. There were other screenshots leaked during the same time, the username of the group was ‘ for hot guy memes’ it went viral under the name of the Girls locker room. Member of the group were all girls who used to body-shame other girls and pass dirty comments on their body. Also, pictures of boys were also circulated in the groups with cheap statements as captions.
Where we are lacking?
What should be understood by this is that it is not the gender fight, and either gender cannot be blamed for the whole situation. People from both the sexes are wrong here. There are several situations where we judge so easily that for rape boys are responsible and girls are targeted for instigating a boy to rape. These are the roots which give rise to cheap mentality and further incidents like this.
Now many people will say that only things were being said but nothing happened, rape was planned but no one raped. This is the most basic thing which should be taught that these things are equally wrong, this is itself a crime of saying to do it. Girls should also know that respect is two ways, you cannot do anything and justify yourself by taking feminism for granted. And boys should know that it is not at all normal to say or think anything about a girls body. You can never do that. No one has given any right to anyone to speak anything about the physical appearance of other people, because once you do this you can not justify yourself by any means.
BY- Shagun Gupta | A Law Aspirant