Posts Tagged With: politics

You know what a bannequin is?

It’s a mannequin that’s banned. Yes. You can unburrow your eyebrows now. Because that’s exactly what it is. And I do believe the first of the species will soon be seen in Bombay. Why? Read on.

A large number of people in the government (it’s always people in the government) recently put their heads together and concluded that lingerie-clad mannequins arouse lust in men. And these feelings then lead to sexual crimes against women. So, instead of attempting to educate, sensitize, or otherwise change gender perceptions in society, they have decided to cleanse and purify window displays.

As the article says, the proposed law gives civic officials the power to simply walk into department stores and ask shopkeepers to take off a lust inducing mannequin. I’m almost certain there will be certain fines involved, perhaps even small jail terms for those who choose not to abide.

What’s interesting to me is that the law was proposed by a woman. A BJP Corporator called Ritu Tawde. The fact that she firmly believes in mannequins being powerful and provocative sources of sexual crimes against women is saddening. It’s like saying a child abuse survivor proposes to ban candy because the act of eating / licking it creates excitement in the mind of a perpetrator.

When will we ever try and point a finger in the right direction? When will we admit that we have a real problem at our hands? And when will we really do something concrete about it?

As of now, we stick with mannequins and food being prime culprits in all sexual crimes.

If this excites you, you've got another thing coming.

If this excites you, you’ve got another thing coming.

Peace.
Kabir

Categories: India, news, strange people | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

On my return from the darkness, and other news

Hello, world!

I’ve been away far too long for most of you to remember me. But for those of you who do, I got busy with something irrelevant: my life. It involved a move from Bangalore to Bombay. And I believe I’ll be eternally thankful for that. For among other smaller reasons, you can actually live in Bombay without regretting the day of your birth. And that’s exactly what I mean to do. Bangalore did barely anything to help my personal growth. As a matter of fact, it did everything possible to stunt and hamper. But I’m happy to be back in Bombay, and I’m happy to be posting here again.

In other news, a Member of the Indian Parliament (MP) recently walked out of the Lok Sabha while the ‘national song’ was still playing. And as always, this has caused tempers to fling themselves, and blood to boil. Some might consider the reactions valid. Some may go ahead and violently support them.

But what is it aside from a displaced sense of patriotism that irks them so? If you asked me, I’d say pretty much nothing. Aside from, perhaps, a sense of control over all things individual. Why else would one person decide for another when they should behave in a particular fashion and when not? Here again, many would argue that it’s a government that’s deciding things, not an individual. And that only makes things worse. Why then, do we call it a democracy? Isn’t it closer to a group of dictators?

On the one hand, people shout themselves hoarse for their freedom of expression, and on the other, they say you must respect a song by standing at attention whenever it plays. How does this schizophrenic system really work? I don’t suppose there’s really a way to find out.

Do you?

Peace,
K

Categories: India, news, politics, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Recipe for rape: Add chow mein to taste.

original image courtesy evanwarfel.blogspot.com

There is a man called Jitender Chatter in India. He is part of the Gram Panchayat (governing body) of about 25 villages in Haryana. He believes that one of the leading causes of rape in India is the consumption of chow mein – among other fast foods. He believes – and propagates – that because we consume such foods these days, our ‘sex hormones’ run wild. And believe you me, I’m nearly paraphrasing him. He has also suggests that the legal marriagable age of girls be brought down to 16. His reasoning is similar; similarly vague. To his credit, he makes one sane suggestion: about training rural Indian women in self defense. Though, he fails to flesh out the plan and offer any hard solutions about who is going to train them, etcetera.

But, of course, he’s not the only one providing logic for rape. Mamata Banerjee, Chief Minister of the state of West Bengal, insists that cases of rape are on the rise because men and women interact too freely in an open society which is akin to an open market.  She also reckons that the media not ‘glorify’ rape by talking about it much. One imagines that her suggestion is to swipe this issue under the proverbial carpet. If the CM of a state can issue such statements ‘freely’, I don’t quite follow where my country is headed. Perhaps we should step back a hundred years when holding hands in public was considered obscene?

And then there are the regulars who insist that if only women would ‘know their limits’ and dress appropriately, they would not be raped. This coming from people who are probably not aware that rapes happen in ‘hip’ urban areas as much as in villages where women dress anything but conservatively.

We talk about laws. But what about their implementation? We talk about punishments. But what about the lives of the victims? We talk about freedom of speech. But what about the freedom to live?

Categories: observations, politics, strange people | Tags: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Why bearded folks should not eat Dosa

Since this is a fairly new blog without a picture of its author up, let me tell you good people that I sport a beard, scraggly though it may be.

Good. Now that I’ve told you an intimate secret of my life, I feel up to telling you about something that happened no more than 15 minutes back. I was feeling a bit hungry and decided to walk to a nearby Dosa place to grab a quick bite. While I was going at it, fingers dipping in chutney and all, a couple walked up from behind me and asked to be excused. I moved away and continued eating my dosa, unaware that a small-time communal riot was about to begin.

So, they ordered their whatever-it-was-they-ordered and started filling their tummies. And through the course of these three meals, I felt a couple of eyes, well, eyeing me. So I looked in the direction of newly arrived couple and caught them making a very pinched-nose-and-crumpled-eyebrows face at me. Offended, I asked them what the matter was. But they told me nothing. In fact, they positively ignored me. That, need I say, offended me further. So I took a step in their direction and asked them again why they were making that face at me.

Then, something happened that I’ve never, with all my imagination, been able to think up. The man took an aggressive step towards me, nudging his woman behind with his forearm and yelled, “Ae Musalman! Door raho, samjhe.” (Hey, Muslim. Keep your distance, understood?)

It was now my turn to make a face, a confused one. I asked him if he was out of his mind. Not because I was offended at being called a Muslim. But because he was insulting Muslims all over the world by talking to me in that you’re-an-untouchable kind of tone. I asked him to take it easy and was about to dig into my Dosa again when the wife said, “Please rehne dijiye. Yeh log bohot khatarnak hote hain.” (Please, just let it be. These people are a dangerous lot.) At which, I thoroughly lost what little was still left of my temper and I shot my tongue off at them about how ridiculous they were and how they should grow a couple of brains between the two of them.

Needless to say, a crowd had gathered around us to cheer at the impending fight. And I noticed that not one of them had a beard, not even the men. So I decided not to push my luck much, pay up and get out of there before I was beaten to a pulp for being a Muslim which I actually am not.

But it’s amazing that in these times, we still have people like these. People who believe that Muslims are dangerous, and that they should be asked to keep away in a social setting. Where are we headed? Are we still stuck in the debris of the Babri Masjid? Are we still bleeding from the wounds of the Bombay riots of the 90s? What is it? I clearly can’t seem to understand why we behave so.

Can someone out there give me a plausible answer?

Peace.
Kabir

Categories: politics, religion, strange people | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

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