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The number of rape cases in India don’t seem to be plummeting; despite the government’s continuous efforts in the bid to safeguard the dignity of the women. All-year-round, lakhs of rape cases are reported across the country, and a majority of them go without an inquiry. In such cases, it’s the layman who himself has to take the responsibility to bring justice to their loved ones, and Jitender Chattar of Haryana is one of those brave hearts.

Jitender Chattar of Jind district married a gang rape survivor, sold chunks of his property to hire lawyers and is now fighting a long battle to bring justice for his wife. He shares the gut-wrenching story of his battle against the accused that would upset many.

Haryana has a huge rape problem, especially in the backward areas. Men would hang around girls' school and harass them, who never complain fearing their families, who would pull them back into the safety of the house, which will eventually affect their studies.

Jitender's wife was gang-raped by eight men who took photos of her pre and post-rape and used them to rape her for another year and a half. The couple was not married when this was happening, but once Jitender was all ears about what his fiancée had to go through, he vowed to bring justice to her.

He recalls, “My conscience started haunting me and I thought to myself, “God will not forgive me if I don’t marry her.’’ I told her, “I will not only marry you, but I will also ensure that you get justice.”

Since then, Jitender and his wife have been hunting for justice with all what he has got to offer.

Jitender helped his wife file a complaint against the eight men, being aware that the accused come from politically connected families. He was threatened of dire consequences, thugs were sent to his house, and three fraudulent FIRs were also filed against him. But all this never dampened his state of mind. Finally, when threating did not work, he was also offered money to withdraw the complaint.

Jitender and his wife have sold two plots to help themselves with legal assistance. After marriage, Jitender quit his family business in Chattar and moved into Jind so his wife can be closer to her parents. Jitender is now pursuing a degree in law, after which he plans to fight his wife’s case.

He is all praises for his parents who have been supporting him throughout the journey. Moreover, his wife is now also studying law. The couple plans to move to Chandigarh to practice law together and provide women from rural India access to the legal machinery.

Like urban India has got its #MeToo movement, it is time that villages to get their #MeToo so that women in the rural area feel protected.

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