Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Little rambling

It has been really long since I wrote something and I have missed it terribly. I came across somebody's post recently where this person talked about how women take the second name of their partners after marriage and why it doesn't make any sense to them. And then everybody else jumping in giving their 2 piece including me. It amazes how we demand freedom of choice against a particular tradition, custom etc. but are quick to criticize the person who chooses to follow them. Doesn't that person have the same freedom of choice to follow the tradition? Just like the ones who do not want to follow! Freedom of choice is a very vast term where we must respect each and every individual's life choices as long as its not something illegal or is not harming them. How about we think twice before judging somebody else's life choices when we don't want to be judged for ours?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Rape and Patriarchy in India

Well, it may seem to readers(the occasional ones that i get)that it has become my favorite topic to explore. Well the thing is - its not. Its just that, the topic refuses to leave the public sphere. Its always there. And why would it - in a sex deprived nation like ours, rape remains a reality that we conveniently would like to put viel on. However, that;s not the point i want to discuss today. Today, i would like to explore a different point of view - that why Rape remains such a powerful issue. In India, where the setup is predominantly patriarchal social system, rape is not just a crime - its a tool for men to show their supremacy over women, tool for upper cast men to wield their power over the lower casts. Rape is still referred as "Izzat lootna"(dishonored) in hindi newspapers and in general discussions as "Ladki kharab kar di."(Couldn't find english for this, similar to being dishonored though). Some of you may be laughing over these sentences but it remains a reality for a larger population. Women are still supposed to preserve the honor of the family by staying virgin till they get married. Don't bother asking what happens next. After marriage she becomes the property of the husband and it doesn't matter if he rapes her everyday. The absence of recognition of "Marital Rape" in Indian law is a reflection of how entrenched patriarchy is in the society and among the educated people. So the question that I want to ask is - What do we want to prove by asking "death for rapists"? Aren't we reinforcing the idea of patriarchy by doing so? That rape is such a powerful crime and the perpetrator has so much power over the victim that he must be killed? Why nobody talks about empowering the victim by taking away all the importance to it? I agree that the damage to the psyche of the victim is huge and it takes her years to get over it. And i can only imagine the level of violation she must feel!! However, if we give her more power, put her on the path of recovery and treat her like any other person and not as a "Rape Victim." She doesn't need your sympathy, she needs your support. if you can give her that, stay around. Else, get lost. Her life doesn't end because of one incident that happened. Yes, she will take a long time to recover, but what we need to do it to empower her by treating her as if we would treat any other person and not by treating her as a victim!! That's just your patriarchal mindset working.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Rape, Media, Society and Us.

So much has been said about rape, its causes, who is responsible for it, how govt. should take extra steps and what not. I wonder if there is anything that has been left unsaid. I would still like to go ahead and express what i think on the issue. My firm belief is that we should stop blaming govt. for a rape. Not that i am trying to absolve them of their duties or responsibilities. But think again, is it really the govt. who is doing it? Is it them who will stop it? Are they the ones who are encouraging it? Do you have answers to these questions? My stand on the issue is that whenever a rape happens anywhere in the world, it's society's collective failure. One of the prime reasons that society was formed was that it provided us a sense of security. Rules were made and people obliged by these norms because they used to feel secure. Is it still happening? A six months old girl child, who is raped by her own father or uncle, what rule did she really break? We often hear people saying: oh why was she out so late at night, why was she hanging out with a man! My question to these people is- How safe is the girl who dresses up in the most conservative way and doesn't go out after 6 in the evening? Are we as a society able to guarantee her a safe life where there is no molestation or rape or mental torture? There is no guarantee. Statistics show that in 70% rape cases, the perpetrator in known to the victim. What are doing? What are we teaching our children? What values do we give them when we raise them? The objectification of women as a means to satisfy a man's need? Most of the media around is filled with examples. Why just single out Honey Singh and ignore the advertisements and 'Fevicol' song? Wherever you look, you will find that the general portrayal of women in the society is that of an object. Whether that object is to fulfill sexual needs or false ego is irrelevant. Just saying that hang the rapists and improve the police force is not solution. Policemen, they are one of us. Their attitude is reflective of that of society at large. Why blame only them? Why not take a good look inside us and evaluate what are we made of?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Satyamev Jayate

The latest show to create a buzz is 'Satyamev Jayate'. A lot of people are talking about it. Its there on twitter, Facebook, newspapers, TV channels, everywhere. It was a much talked about show even before it started because of the host Amir Khan, the format of the show, the marketing strategy it adopted, the unique approach Star network had regarding the broadcasting of the show. A lot of it was new for Indian television industry. However, no one knew what the show will be about! Now that two episodes are already out, we know it is a show that talks about sensitive social issues which have, till now, been easily swept under the carpet thinking,"it won't happen to us or to people we love". The show touches all the aspects of the issue at hand, bringing out all the implications it has over the individual and the society. The first episode was really informative as it discussed concrete facts and data. Female foeticide, though a known fact, has hardly been discussed in India. And even if it has been discussed on TV shows on Doordarshan, the reality is that no-one watched it. The reasons may be many-that they didn't have the star power or lacked the sensitivity that is a prerequisite for a topic like this. But when somebody like Amir Khan talks, people listen. They pay attention. Its a tried and tested formula in marketing and i am really glad to see that it is being used for a good cause. It was a relief to watch a show that talked about Child sexual abuse-a topic that needs immediate attention by parents and children alike. Finally, somebody realized the need to bring it the fore. I wish they will not bring the star guests in every episode. Its a real turn off. It has a potential bring a change. I hope it is able to bring one.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


Women empowerment! We often hear this term but do we ever pay attention to as why do we need it? What is the significance of this term? What do we mean by women empowerment? What groups do we target when we talk about empowerment of women? And what do we actually mean by ‘empowerment’?
Dictionary meaning is ‘to give power or authority to’. Government often talks about women empowerment through various schemes launched by state or central govt. The most recent one was introduction of “Women reservation bill”. All the parties differed in opinion as to whether to support it or not. There were disputes and difference of opinion within the ruling coalition itself. Even Sonia Gandhi failed to gain the required number of votes to get the bill passed in Loksabha. Yes, the bill was passed in Rajyasabha, may be because the members are the people who are specialists in their respective fields and are the intellectual property of the country. They are not concerned about losing their vote banks and are not chauvinist.
But the government should understand that by reserving 33% of seats in parliament for women is going to empower them theoretically. Reality at the grass root level is going to be the same. We have the example of Panchayati Raj institutions where 50% seats are reserved for women. The women candidates on these seats are just the puppets whose strings are in the hands of the male members of their families. Even after so many years these institutions were christened, situation at the ground level remains same. Child marriages still take place. Female foeticide remains a bitter truth, women are bought and sold as the sex ratios are skewed, and they are still treated as a commodity rather than a human being. Rape victims are looked down upon and men look at us as an object. You can tell by the way a man lurches at you. Whether you are in a bus, a train, roadside, in your own car, or may be in the vicinity of your own home, they can rape you with their eyes. Govt needs to realize that before thinking about empowerment, they should aim for equality. They should start from the basics where a girl is not killed in the womb just because she is a girl, a girl is not denied food just so that her brother can have four meals a day, she should have the right to education, is able to go school because she wants to.
We should spread awareness among the male brethren that if the women of the country are not well fed, is not educated, is not taken care of; it would not be long before we see the society rotting into the gutter. Women are the basis of a healthy society and a successful nation. They are the ones to take the society forward by giving birth to a child, nurturing till the time he/she becomes independent to start their lives on their own
Before aiming for sky, we should ensure that the foundation of the rocket launching station is strong enough to sustain the pressure. Then only we can look forward to the next stage.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Nothing New

Well well well!!

There is os much t owrite and i just dont know how to start. A lot is to be taken care of. Everyone is so concerned about me that it scares me at times. I hop ei'll get through the times as always.
What to say and what not to say. While travelling i met this old man recently. He was trying to start off a conversation and i found him a bit intimidating and irritating at the same time. And suddenly he asked if there was any job in my office which required paperwork. That one moment made me realise the impact of recession in no time. He was no less than 65 or 70. Living in my comfort zone, i never realised that things could be so bad. I always found those persons irritating who fight for a rupee or two. But now i know that even that one rupee comes to your pocket after working really hard. Every penny you earn counts.

Lesson learnt, i still m a spendthrift and m trying to control my habits. Hope God be kind upon me this time!!

My life at present

Finally i am here,

writing after almost four months. At one point of time i thought i would never be able to write again on my blog. But here i am, back from the ashes of time as they say. I am writing this post sitting in office. I mean this is unbelievable. At times i feel that all the money i pay to my internet connection provider is going as i hardly have any time. After 12 hours of office, you just don't feel like doing anything and in my case, i don't even watch TV.

Though i've been longing to read 'EMMA' by Jane Austen and even started it but somehow couldn't complete it.
Life is in a real mess at this point of time.
However, there are some things that are really good have happened to me.
Well m not gonna talk about it here( its a secret). Only people close to me would get to know it.