we are sick and tired...

We, women, are sick and tired of being told how to dress, how to behave, what to eat or drink, when to go out etc. Where are our constitutional rights! If we are to hear the Baghpat Panchayat or Ministers post the Gauwahati incident, we are responsible for every aberration that befalls us: eve teasing, molestation, rape etc. I would say something is wrong with our men. Maybe that is the question that needs to be addressed. Whether the reports we have been bombarded with in the past days are genuine or media created is another question. But the bottom line is that we women make good copy! And the sad reality is that brutalising women is the rule rather than the exception.

What is frightening is the brazen reporting of such incidents by a somewhat irresponsible media. And what is terrifying is that in India today when cameras roll the culprits do not hide themselves and scoot but shamelessly play to the gallery. And what is scary is that people watch the show, just as they would in their drawing room in front of a screen, rather than stop the abuse.

But what is the most petrifying is the new found regressive belief that women are the keepers of social morality as is evident in dispensations like those made by a Minister who says with impunity: "Women should dress in such a way that they invoke respect in others". And my blood boils, curdles and freezes at the same time when I hear the National Commission for Women Chairperson, a woman, state: be careful about how you dress!

Something has changed in the fabric of our society. From a caring people we seem to have mutated into a voyeuristic one. We enjoy seeing gore and abuse, the more the better. And this new appetite is being fully exploited by TRP hungry media. One wishes they restrain themselves before it is too late. One wonders if the young girl who suffered terrible abuse in Guwahati would have been let off where the cameras not rolling.

I cannot but feel sorry for the 41 year old hospital staff who was made the fall guy and lost his job courtesy another media circus.  The man was the sole earner of a family of 10. The media made him a ward boy/sweeper whereas he was an OT assistant with 19 years experience. He did what we was told and paid a heavy price. It is sad but true that in many hospitals Doctors go AWOL and other staff are made to pitch in. They often do a great job and even save lives. They are not the culprits. The real culprit is the administration and the rulers who have not been able to get their act together even after six decades of freedom.

In my early days working in slums I too felt outraged at the number of quacks that operated in the slums. But then with time I realised that they were often the only care givers and often did a reasonable if not good job. The alternatives were not viable. The better Doctors, if any were to expensive, the government dispensaries few and poorly manned, and the hospitals too far and too time consuming.

Apologies for the digression but too many things are cluttering my brain. But let us get back to the main issue: that of women and their fundamental rights! This attitude of making women responsible for any and every aberration is not acceptable. There is something wrong with men. Maybe legalising porn, sex shows and other such things would reign them in! If not, then let us just lock them up and loose the key.