The following article is based on my own interpretation of the said events and/ or publicly available information. Any material borrowed from published and unpublished sources has been appropriately referenced. I will bear the sole responsibility for anything that is found to have been copied or misappropriated or misrepresented in the following post.
Sumel Kamal, MBA 2016-18, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur
A 10 year old is appreciated for her thundering recital of “Khoob larhi mardani wo ” but is shushed when she whispers about how the school bus driver stares at her or how her uncle inappropriately touches her. The girl who fell prey to eve-teasing is asked not to look back at the driver and not to sit in her uncle’s lap. The rape victim is told that her dress was at fault and that the word ‘Marital Rape’ is a mere brainchild of the feminists.
Be it the molestation of women in Bangalore on the New Year’s Eve or the assault of hundreds of girls by a Delhi based tailor, the new year has just brought bad news. It is time to shush the minister this time who said “boys will be boys” and tell him that the focus should not be on the nature of men but on how to nurture them. Sexual harassment is closely related to sensitive issues such as pregnancy, youth, disability, violence at home, poverty and caste. All these issues need to be addressed to put an end to the crimes against women. A khap that ordered the rape of two sisters as revenge for their brother’s elopement needs to dissolved, the minister who blames ‘skin show’ for the molestation of women needs to be sacked and the stereotypes of sexual subservience need to be broken. Reporting of such crimes, raising non-violent kids and an open discussion on sexuality is the first step forward. In a world where a man who openly makes lewd remarks on women is elected as the US president and a world where women are considered as war-loot, it is a lot to ask for but rights are never granted, they have to be fought for.