Here’s a complete story of Ruby Naaz. Come to think of it, Ruby Naaz is just a name for me, a name that I got to know of after she had passed on to another world. She was from Meerut while I am from as far as it can be from Meerut. I haven’t known this girl; we had nothing in common. Yet I can confidently claim to present her complete story. For how long can her story be if she was killed at 14 ?15? It is now, at this age that a story should begin for her but sadly her story seems to have ended where it began.
Let me try and make some sense into it. I was watching one of the many NEWS channels’ crime segment. Every single tale related on that segment is cold blooded and bizarre and senseless and tragic and distressing by definition but this particular one could give shocking a whole new meaning.
It is the story of a young girl, Ruby Naaz, studying in class 9 at a municipal school in Meerut. Her father: a toy vendor at one of the street markets in Meerut, mother: mended neighbours’ clothes to supplement the family income. They lived in a small chawl. She had a brother too who must be a couple of years older than she was.
On Thursday, the 19th of May 2005 Ruby Naaz is killed! Cause of death: asphyxiation caused by strangling, the culprit: her own, biological father. If you think this is shocking wait till I give you the reason. The reason for Ruby Naaz?s death happens to be that she was born beautiful. Now who shall we meet about this? There is a section in Meerut itself who go through painful surgeries to become beautiful (I know this for a fact because girls from Meerut are extremely beauty conscious and they make a chunk of the population of these silly beauty pageants that happens every second day in India) but for Ruby Naaz, beauty that was gifted to her by God himself and in abundance turned out to be a curse.
Ruby Naaz was a decent Muslim girl, who minded her own business. She went to school, came back and did her own thing. She never ventured out of her house after that. How can she be held responsible if she caught the fancy of a band of good for nothings on her street? Every single day as she was returning from school, these (lets just put them down to animals for want of words or maybe not cause I will definitely be offending the animals) rowdies would pass comments at her. Their comment got intense by the day but Ruby Naaz bore it all without mentioning a word to anyone because her desire to get a decent education was far greater than to be bothered with some cheapos doing what they are fit at.
….they think they did her a service by putting her out of her misery in the most heartless and bizarre way anyone could ever think of….
But these guys, three of the whole bunch surpassed all limits when on Wednesday the 18th May 2005 they entered Ruby Naaz’s home in broad daylight and in the presence of the whole family threatened to rip to pieces her modesty in the next few days. More SHOCK? Wait? there?s more to come.
The father and son, men of the household discussed the matter seriously and decided to do something about it. The decision: kill the object of their heartache. The cowards!
Ruby Naaz’s mother was the only one who seemed to have felt the loss. (But let us not speculate on how the men felt! There is no good in it now) The neighbours say that the son strangled Ruby Naaz to death but the one who confessed to the crime is the father. So much for the fairer sex! They never tried to hide it; they think they did her a service by putting her out of her misery in the most heartless and bizarre way anyone could ever think of.
Now who is the real culprit here? To hell with the discussion about active and passive killers. The focus should be on the innocent life that was sacrificed at the alter of silly pride. The father thought that if those evil minds had managed to enrage her modesty it would be a shame to the family honour. What are we doing? In this time and age if a man thinks that loosing a daughter that he has loved for 15 long years, for pseudo family honour is far better than being harassed by some street goons. Then I am sorry but we have failed as human beings, as a society and as a nation.
What makes this horrifying incident even more horrifying is that this incident gets a look-in in the channel’s crime segment which maybe a handful watch. The news that gets the headline status is piracy and the new-age MMSs and sale of pornographic CD, politicians pulling out of a party and joining another, political squabbles, the lakme India fashion week, the star parade, the Mallika Sherawats, the Aishwarya Rais etc. Am I disillusioned? YES I AM! Am I wrong? Shouldn?t I be? Not only are we disregarding Ruby Naaz?s lost life like its nothing we are also not making an effort for Ruby Naaz?s story not to be repeated again in another state, another city, another chawl.
I’ll tell you why the NEWS channels put such stories on the back-burner: it is because we don?t care enough, the news channels are used to feeding us what we eat and Ruby Naaz?s story is not the kind we want to hear at the breakfast table getting ready for school or college or office or at the dinner table cause we don?t want to spoil our sleep over someone worthless.
God knows how many dreams Ruby Naaz must have had in her sparkling, beautiful eyes, how many desires she had grown with that were not fulfilled. Which college to go to? What stream of studies to choose? What to wear? Who to make friends with? Ruby Naaz you have touched my heart as will you many more who will get to know you through this source or any other. You were a brave girl who did nothing wrong. You are a Hero if anything. Maybe you have done a greater service in your death! Maybe your death will be a lesson for fathers of other Ruby Naazs on how to do it right! MAYBE….
One last thing though! Why didn’t Ruby Naaz’s father go to the police and get some protection? Crazy muscle power stronger than the law? God knows…or maybe WHO CARES?
Author: Rashmi Diana- India