New Delhi: In a powerful speech, expressing his "very deep sense of anger and anguish" at the manifold rise in crimes and their gruesomeness, CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury on Monday said the "depravity" in society was due to "modernoxicity" and the "neo-liberal economic reforms" that had unleashed "a new animal in India".
Addressing a debate on issues relating to safety of women in the Rajya Sabha, Yechury said: "Today our heads hang in shame that we cannot protect our mothers and children."
"The manifold rise in crimes, and the gruesomeness - words fail me to condemn them in the worst possible manner," he said referring to the brutal rape of a five-year-old girl.
"Can you imagine how depraved a society can be? And this is happening when we consider ourselves as being an emerging economy and pride ourselves in being a modern society," Yechury added.
Taking potshots at Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, the Communist Party of India-Marxist leader said the "unleashing of the animal spirit that the prime minister had talked of is being unleashed in this manner".
The prime minister had, while addressing businessmen last year, asked them to unleash the animal spirits of the country`s economy.
Yechury said the rise in rapes and crimes was not just a question of policing but an indication of "something seriously wrong in society that is getting more and more depraved, this is the issue that this house must try and correct".
He termed as "pathetic" the law enforcement and the justice delivery system in the country. He said unless the justice delivery system is increased with more judges, even an improved law enforcement would be of no help.
"How can you deliver justice as the law enforcement and crime enforcement cannot work as justice is not delivered, it goes down the line.."
Criticising social inequalities, he said India has a social order "where we are still rulers and subjects, there are no citizens".
He also blamed "patriarchal mores" in society for rising crimes. "It is not modernity, but modernoxity - intoxication with modern things" where people flaunt modern brands, but while fixing up a marriage they into the caste and sub caste and where people prefer the birth of a boy to a girl.
"This is a toxic society with modern instruments to play with, but not a modern society."
"We are creating a lethal combination, a venal cocktail - of a hangover of feudal patriarchism and neo liberal values of consumerism", which he said was destroying the social values and leading to depravity in society.
He said the flurry of economic reforms has led to "crass commercialism where women are treated as objects of desire and not human beings, which feeds feudal patriarchal values.. Unless this is shattered we cannot control the situation".
He said parliament "should collectively rise to see that this venal cocktail of feudal patriarchal and consumerist values today that this neo liberal economic policies has created is not allowed to go further."
He said the government should not treat the rape incidents in a piecemeal fashion, but treat it in the larger context of eco reforms which was "unleashing a new animal in India".
He also urged that the recommendations of the Justice Verma committee should be accepted.