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March 6, 2009

Insensitivity of the Society

As we were walking down the road and talking, I said something and turned around to find that she was not next to me. I looked behind and saw her running and beating a man with gray hair with her umbrella. The man did not even complain and went ahead.

I asked her what was that all about. She said he deliberately made a physical contact. Almost every women could relate to this kind of "touching" everyday as they make their way to schools, colleges, work or even to a place nearby.

When the recent Mangalore attacks happened, she was in fury. I could seeing her blood boiling up and am sure she would have loved to kick their @!#$%. I often told her that she should join a "Nari Mukti Morcha Andalon" but most of the times I tell her to let it go. Something she won't!!

I know it is not easy but then it is a kind of Fight or Flight situation, you have to decide how you are going to handle it when it happens. The best way is to confront them, most of them don't actually expect a reaction and that is what boost these sinners. Better attract the attention of the crowd and give them a nice thrashing.

I remember the first time when I came across such incident. Walking with Amma as teenager towards my home. A girl probably of my age with her Mom were coming from the opposite direction. I then saw a guy coming from behind them and moving his hand over the girl. I was taken aback as I had never seen such thing happening before. The Mom and the girl hardly reacted as he passed.

If it is not the touching then it is the staring. People do check out each other but what is not welcome when it remains eyed for a long time. Even school going kids do that. I was surprised when I saw a school going boy standing near the seat reserved for women in the bus and staring at them intently. If you do find someone doing that ask them what their problem is. It is a wrong mentality in our society that we let people stare and don't confront them.

This reminds me of one the MTV Bakra's episode years back, where they showed a girl being harassed by a roadside romeo at a bus stop. What was disheartening to see that no one (read male) intervened even when she asked for help from the people standing beside her. Only one women stood up and tried to stop that romeo. She was telling her brother (who had a good built) to stop the man but her brother choose to stood there and do nothing.

I don't know if you remember this, but way back in 2002 when a minor mentally challenged girl got raped in the Mumbai local train in the presence of five men, out of which one was a reporter whose account as an eyewitness was on the front page. They did nothing and watched as a drunken got into his act and then got off the train. The question that came to my mind was why they did not stopped him.

When I first read the story the one thing that came to my mind was the man carrying a weapon? or he was of a good built that prevented them from stopping him? I was angry at them for not standing up when I saw the picture of the accused who was nothing but a thin frame man who could have been stopped. It was really a shame for men specially. I am not sure how they were and are able to sleep in the night.

This is our society built on insenstitivity, though we prefer to add the term "fear" to to display our inability to act. We forget that the women who is being eve-teased is a mother, wife, sister and daughter of someone.

What would you do if someone did this to a women in your family?

Hope the next time, if you see a women being harassed by roadside romeos, you know what would be the right thing to do...

5 comments:

Winnie the poohi said...

The major point her was that both the mother and the girl didnt react! That is really sad!

It gives such men license to do what they feel like!

Yogesh said...

@ Winnie

I guess she was scared, as there were not many people around.

True, the need to be taught a lesson only then things will improve.

indianhomemaker said...

Good to see a man blogging about it! And yes we should react, in whichever way we safely can. Ignoring does encourage. The reason why women ignore is they fear they will be blamed and told to dress 'decently' and to stop 'provoking'.
Such issues should be discussed!

The Survivor said...

@ IHM

I agree that such issues needs to be addressed!!!

Indian Home Maker said...

Congratulations :) This post in one of the winners of 'Tejaswee Rao Blogging Awards - 2011' (TRBA 2011). We would like to create an ebook with all the winning entries in 47 categories on Feminism and Gender Issues in India (and one category on Animals Rights). Please do let us know if you are fine with your winning post/s being included in this ebook. ( Please click here to let us know).