Thursday, July 27, 2006

Safe City or Just a Dream

Today, reading an investigative report by a well-respected TV anchor, in a leading Malayalam daily, compelled me to write this post.

The lady in question, decided to check out how safe women are in the capital city of God’s Own Country. And no surprises, the answer was as predicted. We are not. And the worse part is we are not talking about late nights. The writer along with a few other journalists who kept to the background, but stayed around as a much required precautionary measure, was accosted by men from varied walks of life, young and old, with lewd gestures , suggestive remarks and uninvited invitations at a time of the evening, when most businesses had not even shut shop. The interesting fact is that, these incidents took place not in a deserted part of town, but in prime spots with people including cops standing around.

I have to admit reading the article has left me in much despair. I was hoping against hope, that as years go by, we the so called literate people in Kerala, would let go of our worst tendencies and really begin to respect women and act in a noble manner. Alas! This article in the papers today has served to correct any false notions I had.

I am forced to conclude that no woman is safe any time of the day in any city in Kerala. And believe me, it has nothing to do with the way you dress, act, your age, looks or any other characteristic. And I can prove it with examples and many of you reading this post may have similar instances to narrate. In a supposedly conservative society, where traditions are upheld, and where even dating is considered taboo or even downright offensive, I would think, women are given a bit more respect, than looked upon as mere sexual objects. But then the ever increasing and varied parlour scandals, the popularity of semiporn flicks running for ever in local cinemas, and the fact that women are not safe in this city of ours, should be an indication that all is not well in God's Own Country. The narrow minded and lewd attitude of some men in our state is to be really pitied. The sad part is some of these people are even educated and should know better, but that does not prevent them from acting in this vulgar manner.

Any woman traveling alone becomes a target of these nasty few. Even if they do not physically hurt you in broad daylight, being stared at by these morons is equivalent to being disrobed and violated. And if you are not careful, you would soon find yourself approached by these inquisitive men, who after observing you for some time, feels is their right and privilege to inquire about what you do, where you go, who you with and what not.

Isn’t it time that the law intervened and something can be done to make our city safe for all the women again? Why do we have to curb our outings for fear of these cowards? We need the right to complain without fear of backlash, and the administration should see to it that these perverts are nabbed and jailed and never let out or taught a lesson they will never forget in their lifetime? Are we to continue suffering in silence? I can only hope and pray that it will not be the case.
Read more!

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Marxist Comrades - Learn from Kalaignar

This man- Kalaignar Karunanidhi has only 16 MPs in the parliament of India. He leads a government in Tamil Nadu, which depends on Congress for its survival. Still this man had the courage to issue the threat of withdrawing support to the central government when the later decided to disinvest Neyveli Lignite Corporation. The outcome of the threat – the central government decided to put off all the disinvestment proposals on hold.

Now see the Communist Party- they have about 40 MPs in Parliament.
They are in power in 2 states with brutal majority (remember Karunanidhi is leading a minority government). Yet when the Union Government hiked the diesel/ petrol prices they could do nothing. Their leaders made a lot of hue and cry about the whole issue threatening the central government with dire consequences (of course only in front of TV camera so that their foolish comrades will be satisfied) if the price was not rolled down. They conducted a one-day All India strike (at least that is what they call it - it turned out to be All Kerala harthal with life being normal in all other parts of the country).Even after conducting the strike they couldn’t even convince the Central Government to reduce the price. Karunanidhi just needed a statement to get what he needs. Karunanidhi could have easily called for a state level harthal/bandh and made it a great success. But he has the ability to understand that bandh/harthal won't do any good to his state unlike his partner in Kerala.

What does this mean? Should we believe that communist party with more than 40 MPs in parliament has no voice in running the Union Government compared to DMK with 16 MPs? Should we believe that communist leaders are not sincere (this itself should be a subject of another post) to the issues affecting common people and all their protest are just farce to make their cadres happy? It is up to you readers to make a judgment.

photo courtesy-The Hindu

Read more!

Terms of Use and Disclaimer