Bengaluru was shamed twice in one day. The Garden City has degraded into “Garbage City” (BBMP’s apathy continues). What’s more disturbing is that filth has crept into minds of men too. At the stroke of midnight on 31st December, when the world welcomed the New Year, louts under the anonymity of crowd bought shame and disgrace to the city by unleashing “Gender Terrorism” on women (I have taken the liberty of picking ‘Gender Terrorism’ from Farhan Akhtar’s tweet). Safety of women was compromised as miscreants outnumbered the police. G Parameshwara failed to be the “Parameshwar” for the city and let it slide into mayhem and chaos. Rather than owning up the lack of preparedness and sloppy crowd control, he put the blame on “Western Wear”. Political class has always been insensitive towards gender issues. After three days of the unfortunate event, FIR was lodged. The public outcry forced the police to lodge FIR else they could have dodged this. Police should take cognizance of such events and file FIR report rather than wait for someone to pitch in. Dereliction of duty? Yes, indeed!
A “Swachh Abhiyaan” for male psyche is needed so that perversion is weeded out. So, where do we make a beginning? Charity begins at home. Upbringing of kids has to be equitable. No bias favoring the male child. Gender sensitization has to begin at home. It’s rather unfortunate that government has to launch initiative to end female foeticide (Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao). Sex ratio in the country is skewed. The society is patriarchal. The male dominance is so deep rooted that exception has become the norm. As a result, men grow up with the belief of being superior to women and they exhibit dominance through abuse and harassment. They have been at unease when it comes to establishing healthy relationships with women. The failure to do so often results in frustration and they vent it out through the abominable acts of stalking, molestation, groping et al.
Tougher laws with faster closure of cases are needed to end the menace of crimes against women. Cases of molestation and stalking need to be dealt with seriousness. These offences should be made non-bailable. Such offenders should be barred from receiving government benefits (subsidies) and government jobs for life. No voting rights. They should be socially isolated. There has to be a strong deterrent so that men who seek fun in such crimes would shudder even at the thought of it. But it would never happen because champions of individual rights and liberties would cry foul. Some of them would even hand over “Sewing Machines” to the offenders to start a new life. There lies the biggest handicap. Individual rights and liberties are for civilized people not for those who flirt with criminality. What’s more ironical is that people in power when they are caught red handed abusing women they would flash “Dalit Card” and play victimhood. AAP legislator did the same. Dalit card is the new trump card. Flash it and get away with anything. For serious crimes, play the Communal Card. Cry “Minorities are under threat” and the theatre of absurd follows.
The Patriarchal system has denied equal rights to women in inheritance and succession. Personal law boards have perpetrated injustice to women. Triple Talaq is a classic case .Muslim Personal Law Board dominated by men have opposed banning triple talaq. Abuse and dominance has permeated to all levels in the society. A bigger cleanliness drive is needed. The road ahead is long and the climb is steep but there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Picture Credit: Emaze