The Concept of Equality—Once Again

139 Comments

On October 27 2006, a new law titled The Protection of Women From Domestic Violence came into effect.

The law defines two concepts fairly clearly: [bold font mine]

2(a) “aggrieved person” means any woman who is, or has been, in a domestic relationship with the respondent and who alleges to have been subjected to any act of domestic violence by the respondent.

2 (q) “respondent” means any adult male person who is, or has been, in a domestic relationship with the aggrieved person and against whom the aggrieved person has sought any relief under this Act.

That is, I presume (and I am no legal expert) that the gender of the victim and the perpetrator of domestic violence has been hard-coded into the law. The title of the law also makes it pretty clear—it concernes itself only with the protection of women (a fact that is repeated a few times in the document in different contexts e.g. “Provided that no order under clause (b) shall be passed against any person who is a woman.”)

Moving on, we reach the following section:

31. Penalty for breach of protection order by respondent.-(1) A breach of protection order, or of an interim protection order, by the respondent shall be an offence under this Act and shall be punishable with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to one year, or with fine which may extend to twenty thousand rupees, or with both.

In lay terms, that means that if the man does not follow the remedial actions prescribed by the protection order, he is now deemed to have committed a criminal offense that may result in one year jailtime and a financial penalty.

And now this section: (bold font mine)

Cognizance and proof.

32. Cognizance and proof.-(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974), the offence under subsection (1) of section 31 shall be cognizable and non-bailable.
(2) Upon the sole testimony of the aggrieved person, the court may conclude that an offence under sub-section (1) of section 31 has been committed by the accused.

What this means (again as I understand it) is that if the woman says that the man has not done what he had been told to do under the protection order, then that may be considered to be enough to decide the man’s fate. My interpretation is corroborated by this line from an article about the new Law.

Now, when a woman files a complaint the onus is on the man to prove that he did not abuse his wife.

I thought that one of the assumptions of jurisprudence was that an accused is innocent till proven guilty. Evidently not.

So how does the law define “abuse”? Well one of the things that constitute “abuse” is:

(iii) “verbal and emotional abuse” includes- (a) insults, ridicule, humiliation, name calling and insults or ridicule specially with regard to not having a child or a male child.

Before I go any further, let me sound a caveat to myself. It is very difficult, as a man, to be critical of a “Woman’s Bill” without being labelled a chauvinist and a misogynist. I know. I have been called those before, in different contexts when I felt I was merely making a case for equality. So I shall take special pains and choose my words very carefully so as to make my point clear and avoid any “unintentional” misinterpretations.

Straight of the bat, I would be a fool not to realize that cases of physical, sexual and emotional battery inflicted by men upon women far outnumber abuse that women inflict upon men and that this law relates to the most general case. However, people would be seriously deluded if they think women never abuse men in any way or form, especially in a middle class urban millieu where this law is likely to be used more frequently simply because of the greater awareness of its existance and its clauses. Just like men abuse women for not being able to provide a progeny, I know of cases, which may be a lot fewer, where women taunt their husbands for being impotent or lousy in bed. Why is one a crime and not the other?

As an example, how would people feel if there was an anti-terrorism ordinance which was called “The Protection of Buddhists from Terrorism” where the definition of perpetrator was a Muslim and a victim was defined as a Buddhist with the law being rationalized by the fact that most terrorists in India are Muslims and there has never been a Buddhist terrorist to date?

Which brings me to the central thesis: the concept of equality. Physical, sexual and emotional abuse are serious issues and laws are needed to be able to precisely define such acts of violence and create proceedures for taking action if they occur. However these laws should understand that perpetrators of domestic cruelty are simply “bad people”—they do not necessarily have to be male. In today’s world, an economically dependant husband could be as vulnerable to abuse from a working wife as a non-earning wife is from a bread-winning husband. Ergo he needs to be protected by the state. Sure the number of such husbands may be miniscule, but laws exist to protect us all, not just the majority.

When the gender of the victim and the perp is hardcoded into the law, a lot of pre-judgement has already been made as to who is guilty. In a “he says, she says’ scenario, the law openly declares that it favours the ‘she says’. This pre-supposition of guilt makes the law open to being used as an instrument for blackmail and armtwisting (if you do not do so-and-so I will set the cops on you and trust me, you will never be able to prove that you did not verbally abuse me). —something that can easily be avoided by creating gender-neutral, ‘family harassment’ legal structures that seek to protect both women as well as men from the “perpetrators” and the “abusers of the law”.

No matter what their gender may be.

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139 thoughts on “The Concept of Equality—Once Again

  1. But then, that would not bring in the votes, would it? And it won’t be as sensationalizable as this on … from india uncut’s last post, politicians wont pass laws which are not popular…

  2. Pingback: DesiPundit » Archives » The Concept Of Equality

  3. I was waiting for this GB after that comment thread with yourfan on a previous post. As usual, an excellent analysis of what’s wrong with the Bill. Unfortunately, it’s all about politics and Ms Renuka trying to do for women what Mr. Arjun does for OBCs. Of course the Women’s groups are fully behind it with their definition of feminism which roughly boils down to: “Women are better than men” which explains why they are never expected to misuse powers granted to them. Even if they do,  we have the “You go girl” cheerleaders backing them up, rationalizing their behavior with “Men have had it good for long, now it is payback!” If you look at it closely, it is basically the same logic that drives reservations.

  4. I agree with Rohan… classification on any basis (that is due to birth) is wrong and this includes classification on the basis of caste and class, in addition to sex of course, as GB pointed out. By classification I mean both favourism and exploitation. US judiciary is probably the best example of this, and its not difficult to show how much this has benefitted the society at large.

  5. Just to add, the lawmakers are probably not seeing “kyon ki saas bhi kahi bahu thi”…. the spared the mother-in-law if I correctly understand.

  6. I feel, lawyers lobby would be behind such a law.
    For long lawyers were kept out of business by gunda-turned-politicians, bhais, builders, son of neta’s, supercops etc.

    Poor lawyers, they need something to feed their families.

  7. This is infact a genuine concern with this new law. I have personally seen a case where there was a woman who misused the dowry law against her husband, to get back at him for some totally unrelated personal reason. And with this new law, we face the risk of women misusing this law as a sort of blackmail.

    Also, if there is a case of domestic violence, whatever sex the victim belongs to, the law should be capable to giving him/her justice by the extent of the crime and not because of his/her sex.

    Empowering women doesn’t translate to having biased laws.

  8. So true. Though having a law protecting women from domestic violence is commendable, the inequality inherent in the laws takes away a part of its ‘just’ness. It is good that domestic violence is finally being regarded as a crime, and no more just a ‘ghar ki baat’. however declaring the man guilty even before hearing the case is unfortunate. I hope the courts realise and try and amend this through their interpretations and judgements whnever they come about.

  9. An extremely well written article.

    Btw, this is just the tip of the iceberg. I dont think you have seen the the worst yet. Radical feminists like Renuka Chaudhary are destroying our culture and are oppressing men in the name of women welfare.

    Please visit the following blogs

    savemarriages.wordpress.com
    presentindia.blogspot.com
    givemejustice.wordpress.com

    498a.org

  10. there are lots of issues for which we dont have laws…
    but considering the amount of domestic violence against women, I think it’s fair that we have a law for that…

    I do not believe that domestic violence against men is, at this point in time, very frequent…we might be getting there, though… i dont know

    but I do agree that putting the burden of proof on the accused is unfair… it is against all logic… especially since we have issues like emotional abuse, which, in my opinion, is a subjective thing.

  11. Say, there are 1 lakh men abusing women in a way that would fall under the purview of this law. There are a 100 men, say, who can liable for being blackmailed or tortured by women abusing this law. The way it is structured now, there is no respite for way out for them.

  12. AS usually happens when laws like this that ‘try’ to do good are passed, people like you and the ones who’ve commented, have come out of the woodwork to rant against it. The unfortunate thing abt the new law is that the implementation will be wanting. Just as is the case with other similar laws to do with caste discrimination, religious discrimination, etc. But instead of talking about that, you and you ilk dismiss th law as ‘discriminatory.’ Why? do you feel threatened in some way? clearly, you do. Because anything positive, especially when it has to do with women, non-Hindus, non-rich, etc, immediately gets you lemmings out. no, i don’t visit this blog, some asshole pointed ths out to me and i read it so take that all youse who will now say juvenile things like “if you don’t like it don’t read it blah blah whine whine”…

  13. interestingly, the Domestic Violence Act has registered its frist case by a man against his wife 😀
    i couldn’t find it newhere but on the epaper. Look to the thin column on the right, the second short story

  14. Why do we have a law like this ? The same reason we have a exclusive “Biotech park for women” in Chennai, even though are no “Biotech parks for all”.

    This is an attempt to take yet another detour from the principles of equality before law. Today there are so many detours that we cant even see where the highway is.

    The promoters of these detours are seeking to create a group of vested interests where there exists none. A classic case of narrowing of interests so the larger issues are not called into question.

    You may wonder so what? Big deal, everyone has bitten off a piece of the equality cake, why cant women have a piece ?

    Actually, it is not such a big deal if it didnt lead to anomalies that pit one detour against another. For example : What is an caste woman uses this law to torment a Dalit husband ? Would this law stand Vs the prevention of atrocities to SCs Act ? What if a woman is used as a pawn by another man (eg a lover or a new husband) to settle scores or torment her former partner ? What if a conviction via this act is used as part of a larger case such as a dowry, or divorce, or custody ? Will the lower bar of evidence in this case have a bearing on others ?

  15. Arnab,

    Your idea sounds great: equality in the eyes of the law. But, what is the purpose of having affirmative action programs then? It is merely the codification by the legislature of inequality; the same inequality that will now apply to the judiciary in terms of gender. In short, I agree with your central issue.

    However, the violence perpetrated by men on women in India has to be put into perspective. Will this law apply only to the middle class women, since it is they who can access legal sanctuary the best? Yes, it will initially. Why did we have voting rights in 1950? At first, only the then thin layer of middle and upper-middle classes used this to change or affect governance. The idea of democracy, of the ability and effectiveness of voting, however, slowly took roots among the poor. In essence, I agree with your notion of which sector of society this law has immediate effect upon, but I consider taking a longer term perspective puts the issue in a different light.

    I have always opposed the ‘sanskriti’ gang, thus, was pleasantly surprised because you did not address the issue on those terms. The government should indeed stay out of our bedrooms and morality, however, when the life, liberty and property of women are affected by brute coercion then the fate of fifty percent of our population is at stake. Fifty percent, that is, more than 500 million people. And, here, the government has taken a step in the right direction.

  16. Good post, Arnab.
    Uncannily enough, today morning our housemaid’s elder sister got thrown out of her house and severly beaten by the in-laws along with her 2 underage children since the husband had re-married. Guess what was the reaction from the poor girl’s family? They have been crying buckets and thinking about how to get a job as a housekeeper in some household in Kolkata — not for a minute have they thought what a grave offence this has been:
    1. marriage when the first wife exists is null and void by hindu act
    2. 498A domestic violence to the wife by husband and in-laws
    3. several sections of IPC come into play when you physically abuse children
    I mean just reporting to the local police station is good enough to teach that horny bastard a lesson, the offence clearly is non-bailable. But these people are so ignorant they don’t even know that law of the land exists to protect them. After centuries of deprivation, hunger and sexual/mental harassment that they are our very equals probably sounds like a joke to these tormented souls.
    IMHO, there should be campaign (much like the all pervasive one we are having about polio eradication these days) in rural india stressing upon the fact if husbands act like a disease they’ve got to be treated like a disease.
    Equality, we’ll talk of, later.

  17. @Arnab: Spot on (as usual). Wondering though whether a woman with middle-class values will actually go as far as to (mis)use the law to get her man’s goat. Page 3, I agree- already there are a few high profile cases in papers. May be just a question of time when this arbitrage opportunity would be utilized to the hilt.

    @ Rishabh: Such repressed violence in your words, tut tut. Wonder why, though.

  18. heh, on the contrary I think this law will be a super tool for women to threaten their abusive husbands and think to emselves “Kya kar legaa? Ab to “kaanoon” mere saath mein hai”. Drastic circumstances call for drastic measures i guess…once domestic violence is diluted on the social front, the law will have served its purpose…

    Well the law IS called “The Protection of Women From Domestic Violence” So inevitably a woman has to be a victim and the perp her husband, don’t u think? generalizing the law to all genders was prolly not on the law makers mind, though i see an amendment in the makin… 😉

    It will be a v difficult thing though, for households that engage in abusive vocabulary day in day out or for those who treat women as commodities, to lead a “normal” life now on…

    Not that I am in favor of such a “clever-sasta-tikau” law (just feel they have missed out on something) but u gotta put urself in a “woman-shikar-of-domestic-violence”‘s shoes, i guess, to see how radically this law can help her sort things out for her n her kids…but then again…how many conservative women out there will be ready to ujaro-fy their own basi-basai duniya… that is the question?

  19. okay, (this is going to be long )ummm on second thoughts….why does the question of “equality” arise in this matter anyways? How many men out there do u think get bashed up by their wives, or get burnt/ scalded mercilessly and are subjected to , god knows what other inhumane acts and atrocities for trivial and some not so trivial things?? A single word of defiance can get a girl child, daughter-in-law or a wife beaten up by her father/father-in-law or husband.

    And even if verbal abuse occurs, between a bread-winning/working wife and an financially dependant/non-working husband and they end up in a fight, chances are that the husband is prolly not the one who ends up in a corner of the room with bruises and a broken limb or jaw, for the rest of the night, while the wife boasts just fully about being a breadwinner and tryin to make ends meet and the husband being a pain and all that la la la….

    Equality is not the issue here but prolly fairness is. IMO now, there is no such need for this law to be amended to cater “husband” victims, that is unless abused husbands make up a case for themselves and declare that they need to be protected by law from their abusive wives too and the law needs to be fair in that respect.

    And about the below postulate:
    32. Cognizance and proof.-(1) notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974), the offence under subsection (1) of section 31 shall be cognizable and non-bailable.
    (2) Upon the sole testimony of the aggrieved person, the court may conclude that an offence under sub-section (1) of section 31 has been committed by the accused.

    As I see it, domestic violence and abuse is declared as a punishable crime and women are encouraged to an extent that their testimony alone can serve as evidence (against all odds , whatever they might be) but the verdict/judgment remains for the court to decide on.

    ur call.

  20. men are also victims of “verbal and emotional abuse” from women. Number is not less, is almost equal to that of women victims.

  21. Anyone remembers Lorena Bobbit ?

    In statements to police, she explained that she had cut off the penis because her husband was “selfish” and “wouldn’t give her an orgasm.” (from wikipedia)

  22. on the question of equality and indian law, and more so since greatbong came up with a made-up religious analog of legal disparity, I remember that I always had a question which needs to be clarified. would be thankful to any blogger/reader who could answer and provide a reference:

    isn’t it true that muslim men are allowed to practice polygamy legally in India, under shariyati law or something like that? if true, that would be truly a very very unfair and partial law against hindu/buddhist/jain/… men and ALL women. somebody sure should fight for this.

    this whole thing, however, is a repeat telecast of the reservation-anti reservation debate, with general caste -> men and SC/ST/OBC -> women analogies. If the govt. adopts affirmative action as a policy, then both can be justified. else, they cannot be.

  23. you said:
    “In today’s world, an economically dependant husband could be as vulnerable to abuse from a working wife as a non-earning wife is from a bread-winning husband. Ergo he needs to be protected by the state. Sure the number of such husbands may be miniscule, but laws exist to protect us all, not just the majority.”

    i agree.

    everything is about money. who owns more is what counts. the woman is on top if she brings in more money and beleive me she can get away with anything.

    my mil earns more than my fil.he is hen pecked and nagged consistently.he is made to cut onions, dust the house and banned from watching too much tv.

    economic independence is the key in domestic supremacy.

  24. GB,

    I was watching Karan Thapar’s interview yesterday where he literally massacared the usually unflappable Renuka Choudhary. He pointed out some of the ridiculuous provisions in the Act and the Minister actually blurted out that it serves Men right, since women have been suffering for so many years!

    Strains of Arjun Singh?

  25. I have nothing to comment on this. I agree with just about everything in this post and have nothing to add. Once again, great write-up Arnabda!

    However, I thought I’d ask Chipmunk a question: Even if I assume that your statistical data is correct (that very few men get abused by their wives), I fail to see how making the law gender-independent would make it unfair to women. Would you care to clarify please? As far as I know, men and women are both types of human beings, and if the law is made to be applicable to domestic violence against any human being, it still covers women, right? I think I’m missing your point here…

  26. Nice post……
    But GB….am a regular to your site…..what is with hift from the standard humorous gb stuff to more serious posts days…is it the “wannabe politician” part in your profile that is appealing to you these days…..

  27. This is clearly the overreaction of the PC brigade that has led to the passing of this discriminatory law.

    I am not sure about the status of the courts in India, even though I am in India (speaks a lot about the transparenc of judicial processes in the country), I am pretty sure thsi law would have been challanged successfully in the US as going against the basic tenets of the Constitution in at least three ways:

    One, by discriminating between men and women (weaker premise);

    Two, by subverting the basis of the rule of law that says that an accused is innocent until proven guilty; and

    Three, removing the time-honored clause that puts the burden of proof on the prosecution.

    Any lawyers commenting hare who can clarify?

  28. so it basically means that my wife can use a “balan” on me whenever she feels so, but if one day I come home drunk and even touch her…. i can end up behind bars….

    Where are the Victorian days?
    ‘rule of thumb’ stipulated that a man could only beat his wife with a ‘rod not thicker than his thumb.'”

  29. Yourfan writes:
    @GB: I waited for a while to have more of other readers’ comments on your post before I send my comment.
    You asked a question: Why is one crime and not the other?
    Both the instances that you mentioned causes agony. The case of not being able to have a child causes emotional problem and in the case of not having physical relations with the spouse it is mental and physical agony – both at the same time. If the woman can’t bear a child because of the husband (which is easy to prove now a day) then obviously the husband can’t and don’t ‘abuse’ the wife. If the case is due to her then the husband often ‘abuses’ the wife. So, here, the abuser is the husband who abuses the wife.

    Not having physical relation with ones spouse for a certain period of time is a valid ground for divorce as in law’s parlance it ‘tantamount to cruelty’ – not just emotional cruelty but physical cruelty like not allowing one to eat. So in the case that you mentioned; again the husband (providing we are ONLY talking about impotency and not wife refusing to have conjugal life with her husband which often happens now a day) is the perpetrator. The law won’t allow divorce on the ground of woman not being able to provide a progeny since the law does not think that to be ‘tantamount to cruelty’. But the law would grant divorce on the ground of impotency only because that is an act of cruelty – just as the law grants divorce to a man whose wife refuses to have conjugal life with him. IMHO there is no comparison between the two cases that you mentioned.

    Other than this point, I agree whole heartedly with you that the law should be gender neutral. It is a shame on law makers for being blatantly biased while defining the terms like “aggrieved person” “respondent” and I am saying this in spite of being a woman. Why blame the politicians? The law makers are supposed to be educated and unbiased!! IMHO there should be a PIL against these law makers!

    Lastly, I don’t support the logic given by feminists/female ministers that it is pay back time for men. This is the same logic given by the terrorists who can’t get the real men so they kill innocent people. It is the stupidest logic which the feminists use.

  30. The Bill has been introduced with the votebank in mind. However, lets assume for a moment that the intention was honest. I know this is MI3 for you, but lets assume it.

    The Bill is very clear that it considers Domestic violence against women form the majority of cases. Sure, we don’t see any drunk women beating their husbands in the street.

    Violence is meant as “physical” only, so if a wife taunts or insults her husband or vice versa, it is not in the Bill.

    Its a good start to ensure equality that really isn’t there, especially in the lower sections of the society. But I seriously doubt the implementations of the Bill, as many others have pointed out.

    What if the inlaws use violence and the poor hubby doesn’t stand up against it?

    Women might use this Bill as a blackmailing tool, just like many BCs/SCs used the law to blackmail “upper castes” in not questioning them on anything unrelated to caste. Putting the onus of proof on the violence is not correct- that assumes the husband is guilty by default!

    There is no way somebody can disprove, except the lucky ones whose wives forget the date of the violence (hubby is out of city etc).

    Many questions, some tangential to the bill, need answers.

  31. @SignedOut: The trick is to carve out minorities from among us…on regional, caste, religional and gender and convince that minority that they are under “attack” and I, the politician, am the only messiah who will not only protect you but give you a little extra because hey, you deserve it.

    @Rohan: Very politically incorrect you are and very correct also. And Renuka mam vindicates your comment with her statement.

    @Amit: Despite what the law says, women will be punished (I think)—the MILs, the husband’s sister. It’s the wives who by definition are going to be *above* this law.

    @Sam: Hmm.

    @Sneha: Wish more could see it that way.

    @Manasi: Also commendable is bringing live-in relationships under the purview of this law.

    @Distressed Indian: Okay.

    @Sadaf: Noone is debating the need to have domestic violence prevention laws and laws cannot be framed on “frequencies”…that is exactly the point I have made in the post.

    @Matt: And the 100 women are being aided by this law to continue what they are doing.

    @Ravi: Thank you

    @Vivek Kumar: Hmm.

    @Risabh: Thank you for calling us lemmings…that’s pretty high on the evolutionary scale you know ! See you here in a few million years.

    @N: Chappal-wielding woman beats up husband. Well he may have filed a case against her based on this, but the law is pretty clear in its scope and I doubt whether he would get any redress.

    @Realitycheck: “The promoters of these detours are seeking to create a group of vested interests where there exists none.”

    Yes that is the way to political success.

    @Vasabjit: Not sure I understand. How does taking a longer term perspective make the law fairer to all? I understand that in 50 years, women in villages too will be able to take advantage of its provisions. But how does fairness evolve?

    @Suyog: So said Ms Renuka? 🙂

    @Arka: While I agree in essence, I think you cannot talk of “equality” later. Just too important.

    @Ravi:Somehow your comment remained incomplete. Laws, when improperly framed, will be misused and by anyone , of a certain bent of mind, who realizes how simple it is. No Page 3, middle class or lower class here.

    @Abhijit: And yet, men are being asked to prove their innocence. And that too for something as subjective as verbal abuse.

    @Chipmunk:

    okay, (this is going to be long )ummm on second thoughts….why does the question of “equality” arise in this matter anyways? How many men out there do u think get bashed up by their wives, or get burnt/ scalded mercilessly and are subjected to , god knows what other inhumane acts and atrocities for trivial and some not so trivial things?? A single word of defiance can get a girl child, daughter-in-law or a wife beaten up by her father/father-in-law or husband.

    I think I made this point. The numbers do not matter (hence the case of the terrorism ordinance)—the law exists to protect even the “corner” cases. Violence against men, even physical, is a fact. Verbal is also common, again not as common as the other way round.

    And as to the final point, I think the court should not handout jail-time based on ONLY one person’s evidence. The law says that one person’s evidence may be considered to be sufficient…I think that puts too much power into one person’s hand. And mind you that one person has to be a woman !

    @P: Hmmm…no comments.

    @Bengali Guy: Again that is an extreme sensational case….I would think that a severed penis might even break down Ms Renuka Chowdhary.

    @Bombagarer Raja: Which is why we need an Uniform Civil Code.

    @Pradeep: Sigh. And the fun is noone is going to call her a FCP for that.

    @Woman’s Point of View: Very valid point. What you highlight is the principal cause for oppression and not the gender of the individuals. Another cause is submissivity that comes not from economic dependence but from the emotional make-up of the individuals….the moment one partner realizes that he/she can get away with something and the other person is too submissive to retaliate. Again gender does not even come into the picture here.

    @ Ravindra: Heh. Indeed.

    @Joy Forever: Fair question. Again the problem is simply the inability to consider that abusive behaviour is motivated not by the sex of the individual but by the “power” that individual wields in a relationship. That power frequently originates from economics and many times from “character” (one partner tolerating abuse because he/she is too much “in love” with the abuser)

    @Road Runner: Yes. I am going to take on Renuka Chowdhury in the elections. However if you do notice, there are 3 supposedly humorous posts before this one…

    @Shan: I agree with you…in US this law would be challenged for precisely the points you state. Again I am not a lawyer…

    @Pegasus: Advice: Do not come drunk and “touch” your wife. It’s not a very nice thing to do, to put it mildly.

    @Yourfan: I do not agree with your point, provided I understood what you meant.

    Case I: Husband has sex with wife but his sperm is not potent enough to fertilize her egg. In other words, it is the man’s physical condition responsible for the wife not having a baby. Does this make the man a “perpetrator”? Does this make it okay for the wife to abuse and taunt the man for not having “masculine power”?(I hope you are not saying that women abusing husbands for not being “man enough” never happens). I think it is not okay. Just as it is unfair for a man to abuse his wife for not having the “female power” to bear progeny. By this law, only the second is illegal.

    Case I was what I was referring to in the post.

    Case II: You say:

    Not having physical relation with ones spouse for a certain period of time is a valid ground for divorce as in law’s parlance it ‘tantamount to cruelty’ – not just emotional cruelty but physical cruelty like not allowing one to eat. So in the case that you mentioned; again the husband (providing we are ONLY talking about impotency and not wife refusing to have conjugal life with her husband which often happens now a day) is the perpetrator

    Again this is *not* what I was referring to in the post i.e. the refusal of one partner to have sex. But since you make the point, I have to say I do not get it. Not having sex is surely a ground for divorce…so go ahead and get one. How does this law come into the picture? How does the “person not having sex” become a “perpetrator” [like someone refusing food as you point out]? Is someone going to get jailtime for not having sex with their spouse? If that be the case, what is marital rape? If not having sex is cruelty and the person not giving the sex is the perpetrator, then marital rape is not a crime….it is the assertion of a legal right.

    If someone feels their spouse is not giving them sex, at all or in frequencies less than acceptable or giving them lousy sex, the solution is simple: apply for divorce and try your luck. However the “accused” spouse cannot be considered to be a perpetrator in any sense of the term.

    It will be a weird day when a judge has to order a man to have sex with his wife or else face the prospect of being jailed for being an “abuser”. He however can and should order a man, on threat of imprisonment, to provide adequate food if he is the breadwinner and he is “refusing food” to his wife.

    @Sridhar: I think the Bill takes pain to say that violence is NOT meant to be physical only. It is a valid point.

  32. Just happened to see the face-off between Karan & Renukaji. Methinks, Karan’s talent lies not so much in his cross-examination of his interviewees as in his ability to keep a straight face when confronted with pure and unadultrated idiocy. What say, GB?

  33. The fact that there is now legal support for women in “live-in relationships” hints at one of the true motivations for the law. Unless I am totally in an ivory tower, the oppressed women of the land, the ones for whom Renuka cries buckets, do not as of yet lead a Salam Namaste lifestyle. [A review for Salam Namaste, I do wish you would give us, GB ]. The reason that provision is there in the law is because the NGO ladies, who also are very much part of the Delhi Page 3 circuit, are just going to love this. They are going to pat Renuka Didi on her back for being progressive and then will be the first persons to take advantage of the glaring loopholes.

    If I sound a bit negative, I accept I am so. My elder brother got married to one such type and what we did not know was she came with a boyfriend pre-installed, so as to say. Using the existing Dowry laws, she armtwisted my elder brother into paying her bills while she cavorted with her NGO boyfriend. As I look at the Bill, I see that illegal targets of abuse includes “people whom the wife holds dear” which possibly means that if my elder brother abused my bhabi’s boyfrend, it would be my brother who would be hauled to jail !

    Fortunately, thanks to an excellent lawyer (a lady if I may say so), my elder brother got a divorce and is now happily remarried. My ex-bhabi, who made a pretty penny through all this, is now married to another sucker. No. Not her boyfriend.

  34. Joy:
    Well, all i was sayin was why ask for equality in this matter when you can agree on the fact that domestic violence takes a major toll on women than men. Male(offender) – female(victim) incidents easily out number and are much more gruesome, uncontrolled than female(offender)- male(victim) violence incidents. Whats more, a husband beating his wife will prolly go unquestioned as it is “culturally” accepted or rather taken for granted in most parts of India, but the implications are unpredicatable when a woman does the same thing.

    This law reminds me of this kahavat, woh kehte hain na “Tedhi ungli se hi ghee nikalta hai” Tedhi society ke norms ko tedhe laws hi sudhar sakte hain 😀

    This law is gender biased as of now, caters to only female victims, so let it be. It will encourage and help women to protect their rights.

    But it will take Female(offender) – male(victim) incidents in India need to make up a much more convincing case for the law to be ammended to cater to both genders equally.

    One thing that popped into my head on first hearing/reading abt this law still remains intact though, inspite of all that I might have said up here, what measures I wonder(if any) are in place to avoid the abuse/misuse of this law.

  35. Yourfan writes
    @GB; I have to reproduce part of your comment for my comments to be understood. My responses are in uppercase as your post is not accepting italics.
    Case I: Husband has sex with wife but his sperm is not potent enough to fertilize her egg. In other words, it is the man’s physical condition responsible for the wife not having a baby. Does this make the man a “perpetrator”? I NEVER CALLED THE MAN IN THIS CASE THE PERPETRATOR – DID I? Does this make it okay for the wife to abuse and taunt the man for not having “masculine power”?(I hope you are not saying that women abusing husbands for not being “man enough” never happens).I NEVER JUSTIFIED ANY SORT OF ABUSE DONE BY ANYBODY. REMEMBER, IN MY LAST COMMENT AT THE END I WROTE THAT THE LAW SHOULD BE GENDER NEUTRAL. CAN YOU TELL ME WHY I SAID THAT IF I DID NOT BELIEVE IN ABUSE BEING ABUSE NO MATTER WHICH GENDER DOES IT? IF YOU READ CAREFULLY THEN YOU WILL FIND IN THE LAST BUT ONE PARAGRAPH THAT I TALKED ABOUT GENDER BIAS AGAINST MEN IN DEFINING TERMS UNDER THIS LAW. CAN YOU JUSTIFY WHY I WROTE THAT IF I THINK THAT MEN ARE NOT ABUSED? NOT ONLY DID I TALK ABOUT WOMEN ABUSING MEN IN THIS POST BUT I ALSO EXPRESSED THE SAME VIEW IN ONE OF YOUR PREVIOUS POST. …………………….
    …………………Again this is *not* what I was referring to in the post i.e. the refusal of one partner to have sex. YES, I ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU WERE NOT TALKING ABOUT THIS TYPE OF CASES. BUT THE TERM IMPOTENCY HAS DIFFERENT USAGE. THE ONE THAT YOU TALKED ABOUT BELONGS TO ONE CATEGORY. BUT THERE ARE CASES OF IMPOTENCY WHERE IT IS MEANT THAT A MAN DOES NOT PARTICIPATE IN SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE, AGE RELEVANT SEXUAL ACTIVITIES. But since you make the point, I have to say I do not get it. Not having sex is surely a ground for divorce…so go ahead and get one. How does this law come into the picture? How does the “person not having sex” become a “perpetrator” [like someone refusing food as you point out]? HE BECOMES PERPETRATOR SIMPLY BECAUSE THERE IS AN IMPLICIT UNDERSTANDING IN A MARRIAGE THAT THERE WILL BE SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE, AGE RELEVANT SEXUAL ACTIVITIES BETWEEN THE PARTNERS AT A REASONABLE (AGAIN SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE AND AGE RELEVANT) INTERVAL. IF ONE REFUSES ALL TOGETHER TO BE A PARTY TO IT THEN AUTOMATICALLY THAT PERSON BECOMES THE PERPETRATOR. I WROTE VERY CLEARLY THAT IT DOES NOT MATTER WHICH GENDER DOES IT BUT NOT BEING A PARTY AT ALL TO THE IMPLICIT UNDERSTANDING MAKES THAT PERSON THE PERPETRATOR – I EVEN MENTIONED IN MY LAST COMMENT THAT WOMAN WHO REFUSES TO HAVE PHYSICAL RELATION WITH HER HUSBAND BY STAYING WITH HER PARENTS(A LARGE NUMBER I MUST SAY) ARE THE PERPETRATOR AND THAT IS WHY MEN CAN GET DIVORCE IN THESE CASE VERY EASILY. Is someone going to get jailtime for not having sex with their spouse? If that be the case, what is marital rape? If not having sex is cruelty and the person not giving the sex is the perpetrator, then marital rape is not a crime….it is the assertion of a legal right. YOU ARE WRONG AGAIN. THE EXISTING LAW ALWAYS MADE IT ABSOLUTELY CLEAR THAT RAPE IS A FORCED ACTIVITY WHERE THE OTHER PARTNER DOES NOT WANT TO PARTICIPATE. BUT THIS NEW LAW GOES FURTHER AND CLEARLY DEFINES THE CONCEPT OF MARITAL RAPE TO BE FORCED SEXUAL ACTIVITY BY A HUSBAND IN SPITE OF HAVING A SOCIALLY ACCEPTABLE NORMAL SEXUAL LIFE WITH HIS WIFE. AND MODERN DAY PHYSICAL TESTS ARE HERE TO PROVE OCCURRENCE OR ABSENCE OF ‘NORMAL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES’ AND FORCEFUL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES. If someone feels their spouse is not giving them sex, at all or in frequencies less than acceptable or giving them lousy sex, the solution is simple: apply for divorce and try your luck. WE WERE NOT TALKING ABOUT THE SOLUTIONS IN THIS POST – WE WERE TALKING ABOUT THE DEFINITION OF ABUSE AND RESULTING GENDER BIAS. YES, AS YOU SUGGESTED A SOLUTION, I MUST SAY THAT I AGREE IT TO BE A SOLUTION BUT THAT IS NOT A SIMPLE SOLUTION AS YOU PUT IT. THERE ARE OTHER PARAMETERS IN LIFE WHICH DEFINES SO MANY OTHER THINGS AND THOSE ARE NOT THE POINT OF DISCUSSION IN THIS POST -MAY BE IN SOME OTHER POST. However the “accused” spouse cannot be considered to be a perpetrator in any sense of the term.It will be a weird day when a judge has to order a man to have sex with his wife or be jailed for being an “abuser”. WILL YOU CALL IT A WEIRD DAY WHEN A JUDGE PENALIZES A MAN FOR RAPING HIS ‘LEGALLY WEDDED WIFE’? NOT ANY MORE – IT IS HERE TO STAY AND I AM THANKFUL FOR THAT. AND AS I SAID EARLIER – MODERN DAY PHYSICAL TESTS ARE HERE TO PROVE OCCURRENCE OR ABSENCE OF ‘NORMAL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES’ AND FORCEFUL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES – SO NO HE SAYS, SHE SAYS AMBIGUITY.

    I AM TRULY SAD TO SEE YOU WRITE THESE LINES BECAUSE ALL THROUGH YOUR POSTS YOU CAME OUT TO BE SENSIBLE, SENSITIVE AND ATTENTIVE TO OTHER PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS IN SPITE OF FEW PEOPLE USING VERY HARSH WORDS/INSULTS TO MAKE THEIR POINTS STAND. I PRAISED YOU FOR YOUR TOLERANCE. BUT I AM SORRY TO SAY THAT THIS POST DOES NOT SHOW THAT – IT SEEMS YOU ARE NOT EVEN WILLING TO WALK THROUGH OTHER PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS AND PROBLEMS IN SPITE OF YOU BEING A GENDER NEUTRAL PERSON. THIS IS HOW MOST PEOPLE BELITTLE THE TERM MARITAL RAPE BY SAYING THAT HOW CAN A HUSBAND RAPE HIS ‘LEGALLY WEDDED WIFE’. WHAT MOST PEOPLE FORGET IS THAT A MARRIAGE IS A UNION BASED ON MUTUAL DESIRE (NO FORCING; YET THERE WILL BE PARTICIPATION FROM BOTH SIDES) BETWEEN A MAN AND WOMAN IN BOTH EMOTIONAL AND PHYSICAL SENSE. IT CAN’T BE ONE SIDED. GOING BACK TO YOUR EXAMPLE A JUDGE WILL NOT BE ‘ORDERING A MAN TO HAVE SEX WITH HIS WIFE’ BUT DEFINITELY HE CAN MAKE HIM ACCOUNTABLE (IF THE CASE REACHES THE COURT) BY GIVING THE WIFE THE FREEDOM TO DIVORCE HIM (ONE IS NOT FREE TO DIVORCE THE SPOUSE JUST BECAUSE HE/SHE WANTS IT UNLESS OF COURSE AGAIN IT IS MUTUAL – THE PERSON NEEDS SOLID REASONS) AND GRANT HER A FAT ALIMONY. HE CAN’T ‘ORDER HIM TO HAVE SEX WITH HIS WIFE’ BUT SURE CAN ORDER HIM TO PAY THROUGH HIS NOSE FOR NOT HONORING THE IMPLICIT CONTRACT. I MUST ALSO MENTION HERE THAT THE SAME LOGIC APPLIES TO A WOMAN IF SHE IS THE PROVERBIAL BREADWINNER AND REFUSES TO HAVE SEX WITH HER HUSBAND – OTHERWISE YOU WILL CALL ME A GENDER BIASED PERSON WHICH I CERTAINLY AM NOT. OTHERWISE I WOULD NOT HAVE WRITTEN WHAT I WROTE IN PREVIOUS POST WHICH WAS MENTIONED BY ROHAN IN THIS POST. …………….
    SORRY FOR THE COMMENT TO BE LONG BUT I HAD TO ANSWER YOUR COMMENTS ONLY BECAUSE I SINCERELY THOUGHT MYSELF TO BE YOUR FAN -IN OTHER WORDS I DIDN’T FEEL LIKE DISCARDING YOU THE WAY I DISCARDED A FEW PEOPLE IN THIS BLOG BY COMPLETELY IGNORING THEM. IN CASE YOU WANT TO SAY THAT I CAN STOP VISITING YOUR BLOG AS IT IS YOUR SPACE–I CAN ONLY SAY THAT I AM AWARE OF THAT.

  36. You got to read this:

    Devil’s advocate–
    http://www.ibnlive.com/news/act-wont-hit-good-hubbies-renuka/26051-3-single.html

    Renuka ji is explicitly hostile to man. That is right. A minister in our Govt thinks men need to suffer and it is okay. And yet, it makes no news. Turn the tables and see what storm will rise. Say something about 0.1% of minority and see what happens. But 50% of population? Na! No wonder we have law like this. Objective is not to protect women, but to torture the men, and that is clearly spoken. And law is well designed to fulfill its purpose.

  37. @Yourfan:

    Firstly I have to say I do not think I understand everything that you said or are saying. Let me work on the basis of what I *think* you are saying.

    1. Let’s get to the last part first.

    AM TRULY SAD TO SEE YOU WRITE THESE LINES BECAUSE ALL THROUGH YOUR POSTS YOU CAME OUT TO BE SENSIBLE, SENSITIVE AND ATTENTIVE TO OTHER PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS IN SPITE OF FEW PEOPLE USING VERY HARSH WORDS/INSULTS TO MAKE THEIR POINTS STAND. I PRAISED YOU FOR YOUR TOLERANCE. BUT I AM SORRY TO SAY THAT THIS POST DOES NOT SHOW THAT – IT SEEMS YOU ARE NOT EVEN WILLING TO WALK THROUGH OTHER PEOPLE’S THOUGHTS AND PROBLEMS IN SPITE OF YOU BEING A GENDER NEUTRAL PERSON.

    I think this is an extremely harsh and unfair assessment of me. I fail to see how I am unwilling to walk through other people’s problems here. As a matter of fact, I am talking about tolerance to all genders and not selective tolerance. That my intention is above board is something that almost all the commenters here agree with…(with the exception of Risabh)

    I presume you somehow think I am bellitling marital rape. (THIS IS HOW MOST PEOPLE BELITTLE THE TERM MARITAL RAPE BY SAYING THAT HOW CAN A HUSBAND RAPE HIS ‘LEGALLY WEDDED WIFE’.). I NEVER did that (and when I make the NEVER caps, I intend to shout it out. Kindly do point out where I have.

    This below provides some explanation:

    IT CAN’T BE ONE SIDED. GOING BACK TO YOUR EXAMPLE A JUDGE WILL NOT BE ‘ORDERING A MAN TO HAVE SEX WITH HIS WIFE’ BUT DEFINITELY HE CAN MAKE HIM ACCOUNTABLE (IF THE CASE REACHES THE COURT) BY GIVING THE WIFE THE FREEDOM TO DIVORCE HIM (ONE IS NOT FREE TO DIVORCE THE SPOUSE JUST BECAUSE HE/SHE WANTS IT UNLESS OF COURSE AGAIN IT IS MUTUAL – THE PERSON NEEDS SOLID REASONS) AND GRANT HER A FAT ALIMONY. HE CAN’T ‘ORDER HIM TO HAVE SEX WITH HIS WIFE’ BUT SURE CAN ORDER HIM TO PAY THROUGH HIS NOSE FOR NOT HONORING THE IMPLICIT CONTRACT.

    Actually, no judge is needed to provide any spouse “freedom to divorce”. And counsellors enforcing this law are not handling divorce nor is this law germane to divorce in any way. The role of an harassment arbitrator is to prescribe actions that address the problem—-if the husband is not giving the wife food, to make sure he does and to tell him that if the complaint continues he will go to jail. Now what if the problem is “absence of sex”…surely then, according to the scope of this law, (remember this court does not prescribe divorce or facilitate it) the prescriptive course of action would be to make out a schedule for sex.

    This is where marital rape comes into the picture and in which context I mentioned it. Suppose there exists a wife (could be husband) who refuses to have sex or has it seldomly. It could be because of emotional alienation, it could be because she does not feel physically attracted towards her husband and it could be because of age (she no longer feels as up to it as she used to). In this case the husband can ask for divorce and can approach a divorce court and the judge decides how justified the grounds are.

    But I do not see why the husband should have to approach a “harassment court” and what prescriptive recommendations can it make if it be approached.

    Marital rape is an extremely serious issue and people who justify it base it on the assumption that the spouse is always entitled to sex. I said EXACTLY the opposite (sex cannot be taken to be an absolute right in the sense that the right to food and right to be not beaten up ). There are situations where the spouse may not give sex and it is necessarily NOT his/her fault. Ergo noone can force her. He may however argue to divorce her if there is no sex for a prolonged period.

    You compared sex to food. If a husband does not give his wife food, noone will consider her pulling away her husband’s plate and eating the food on it as a “crime”.

    However if a wife does not give the husband sex, it is RAPE and an offence to grab “it” (her choice not to have sex) from her.

    And no there is no “granting of freedom to divorce”…because again you can always divorce. And only the divorce court judge can settle on the alimony….and as far as I know alimony is not determined by the severity of “harassment” (if it exists) but by the relative economic conditions of the spouses, equitable distribution of “shared income” and considerations of children custody. Hence no question of making someone “pay through the nose” (in your words) since alimony is *not* a punitive fine though fault is something that is considered but the amount of alimony is not in general determined by the magnitude of the fault. In any case, if the divorce judge feels that the refusal of sex is so heinous as to make the spouse pay through the nose then so be it. However he cannot and will not call it “abuse” and noone can make a spouse go to jail for this. Again passing judgement on what is an acceptable level of sex and whose fault it is that there is no sex (for instance a wife may refuse to have sex based on a certain behaviour of the husband) is a prerogative of the divorce court and not of the “counsellor with punitive powers” as established by this new law.
    I never said you said men are not abused…if you recall it is you who talked about me writing a post on this Bill and mentioned how slanted it is against men. In this context and since I am mostly in agreement with you, I fail to understand your sudden outburst of anger against me.

    In any case, even if we disagree I do not think it calls for calling me not sensitive more so because I have never endorsed marital rape and done exactly the opposite. Also the fact that I am writing such a long comment in reply to what you said shows that I am sensitive to your concerns and am explaining myself.

    In conclusion, whether you choose to ignore me or not is upto you. (obviously). I am not going to ask you to stop visiting my blog just like I have never asked that of anyone who has disagreed with me, nor have I ever restricted people who do not see eye-to-eye with me their right to express themselves here. If I expect words of encouragement, I should also be prepared for the disagreements.

    So I fail to see why this is the issue….though I must say that I am hurt by the fact that you called me insensitive because my post was EXACTLY the opposite. And so were my comments. (I mention this because sometimes when I visit my older posts, I feel that maybe I was not sensitive to some commenter’s concern and just brushed it away by scoring a debating point. I feel I have not done so with respect to your comment).

    I presumed that one of the reasons you liked RTDM was because I never ignore anyone—even those with whom I do not agree and those who choose to be very harsh in their comments. So I do not see where the question of “discarding” comes even though we may disagree.

    Lastly, it is ironic that a post I was initially hesitant to write but went ahead with because you encouraged me to not back off from adverse reactions, has come in for the maximum flak from you. It was out-of-the-blue not that I expected you to agree with everything I said (we did not agree on KANK) but because I did not expect to be called insensitive for something I did not do (trivialize marital rape).

    Pity.

  38. @Yourfan:

    I was really surprised at the tone and the nature of your comment against Arnab because I for one had no trouble understanding what he was trying to say. What really surprised me was when you accuse him of belittling marital rape when in reality, he is doing the opposite.

    There are many things one can say against your comment: how is sex an implicit agreement? What kind of sex? This law does not deal with implicit agreements : it deals with verbal and physical abuse. Please understand that what you say is impossible to enforce under law because different couples have different implicit agreements (unlike physical abuse and mental abuse[taunting, humiliation, swear words] which is fairly well defined universally). As an example, I may ask for a divorce if my wife does not give me oral sex. You might say what a pervert–how dare he ! That’s exactly why this cannot be legislated against since I may claim that I thought that my wife implicitly understood the expectation when we got married You can say “I mean normal sex, oral sex no way”. I say “I believe in what Ramkrishna said that after a certain age, husband and wife should stay together like brother and sister” and my wife knew when she married me that I was a Ramkrishna Bhakta. And so I am going to sing Syhama Sangeet from now on.

    So what happens?

    Divorce me. As simple as that. I do not see any torture here.

  39. Sorry for commenting again. Came across this.

    WILL YOU CALL IT A WEIRD DAY WHEN A JUDGE PENALIZES A MAN FOR RAPING HIS ‘LEGALLY WEDDED WIFE’? NOT ANY MORE – IT IS HERE TO STAY AND I AM THANKFUL FOR THAT. AND AS I SAID EARLIER – MODERN DAY PHYSICAL TESTS ARE HERE TO PROVE OCCURRENCE OR ABSENCE OF ‘NORMAL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES’ AND FORCEFUL SEXUAL ACTIVITIES – SO NO HE SAYS, SHE SAYS AMBIGUITY.

    What? Tests only establish whether insertion/ejaculation took place: it does not prove the force or intent. Many marital rapes occur with the husband coming back home from work, perhaps drunk, verbally abusing and slapping the wife around (not leaving marks) and then having sex while she lies like a log. Such an act leaves no vaginal tears which is often one of the only things that can be taken to be conclusive evidence to the application of force. (Minor vaginal lacerations also occur during normal sexual acts in the absence of lubrication).

    This is in sharp contrast to say the rape of Priyanka Bhotmange, done by strangers, where a preliminary forensic evidence will show marks on her body and on her private organs. On similar lines, it becomes very difficult to prove “date rape” since though the act of sex can be proven, what cannot be proven was whether the girl consented at that time.

    So yes “HE SAYS SHE SAYS” is still there, contrary to what Yourfan says.
    [Sorry Arnab for being so explicit.]

  40. Arnab,
    Consider this: the land reforms enacted in 1950 took land away from the rental intermediaries (Zamindars, Talkudars) and feudal chiefs (read: princely states). However, the inequalities of status and power were not fully addressed: consider a low-caste/landless farmer from Bihar, in the 1950s, going to court and challenging the local landlord. However, as the years went by, democracy took deeper roots, political organization, NGOs, and vote-bank politics started to raise awareness of caste inequality, as well as the concentration of land and capital in the rural sector. It was only after Indira Gandhi’s ‘Garibi Hatao’ campaign (1970-’71), along with her hatred toward the Swatantra Party supporting big business families and feudals, that equality was given a real chance. But, the laws were there long before she fought for them, so, when awareness and political opportunity came together, the legal framework existed to channel it within constitutional/democratic institutions.

    What I will now state should sound revisionist: the Indian middle classes, the urban (leftist) intelligentsia, and business houses supported the “internal emergency”. But, why did the “Emergency” come about? Indira Gandhi realised what she had unleashed: the “JP Andolan”, which was the progenitor of the movement leading to Mandal politics. This was rabble politics; not the Nehruvian Anglicised intellectual leading the peasants, but folks like Mr. L. Yadav ‘demanding’ rights for themselves, the unwashed masses. Thus, initially, Mrs. Gandhi thought “garibi hatao” was a mere slogan for a victorious electoral mobilization; but the backward castes and the poor (caste and class is highly correlated in India) used this to lay a permanent claim on the political system. Mrs. Gandhi sought to demobilize the population by imposing the “emergency”: she saw how things worked short term; forgot about how the whole equation had changed.

    Now, now, there is an end to this stream of consciousness. Well, seeing short term may blind us to long term consequences. Perhaps, the women’s movement in combination with good old vote-bank politics will do the same for women in India. Do I condone vote-bank politics? Yes, emphatically. It is natural for the middle classes to scream bloody murder about Nitish, Laloo, Mayawati, and the late Kanshi Ram. But, they represent the interests of the subaltern, the vast sea of our people. Tarashankar wrote in Dhatri Debata (I paraphrase): “In this land of the Aryan civilization, of Brahminism (he meant Hinduism: Brahmanya Dharma), there are only Sudras and non-Aryans.” In another section, a character stated that violent revolution would be unsuccessful because it would amount to nothing more than infighting among the elites to capture power, independence ought to mean, he says, “government of the people, by the people, for the people, not for the sake of the people”. If women are fifty percent of our population, and they are oppressed, then it is for the betterment of the body politic that they be given such a law.
    Vasabjit

  41. phew seems like a lover´s tiff between the Greatbong and yourfan..- reminds me of Mr. Frodo and Sam..
    hey time for a new article please- you´re spending so much time on the replies- might as well right something new…

  42. Yourfan writes:
    @GB: Again your post is not accepting italics so I have to send your comments in uppercase.

    I never questioned your intention for a second. Even in my last comment I said that I think you are a gender neutral person. In spite of being a woman I was first to say that this Law IS discriminatory to men. I also wrote about women (whom I know personally) who abuses situations to their advantage while throwing away the concept of fairness to wind; and yet the feminists use the logic of pay back time. I also suggested that there should be a PIL against this Law. Since I thought so, and I acknowledge that I am not at all a good writer to express my thoughts (as you have written “FIRSTLY I HAVE TO SAY I DO NOT THINK I UNDERSTAND EVERYTHING THAT YOU SAID OR ARE SAYING.”) I encouraged you to write on this topic. That is because I wanted to know what the intellectually advanced population of India and Indian origin (who takes the trouble to be connected with India and Indian’s problems by visiting/writing blogs and posting comments) think. Let me first thank you for taking the trouble to write a post on this. I should have thanked you earlier – which I forgot and you will soon know the reason.

    You wrote “JUST LIKE MEN ABUSE WOMEN FOR NOT BEING ABLE TO PROVIDE A PROGENY, I KNOW OF CASES, WHICH MAY BE A LOT FEWER, WHERE WOMEN TAUNT THEIR HUSBANDS FOR BEING IMPOTENT OR LOUSY IN BED. WHY IS ONE A CRIME AND NOT THE OTHER?” Before asking this question why didn’t you mention at the same breath anything about men complaining about wife not being sexy enough on an absolute term or compared to so and so (one of your readers used this very explicitly to make his point), why didn’t you write about men who due to religious, physical reasons refrain from sex yet are not human beings ( I won’t use the word ‘man’ because I have respect for men folks) enough to accept the situation socially but pretends to be a man and a nice husband? Here you touched a raw nerve in me because (I HAVE to say this in order to explain myself) my own sister was a victim of molestation (not rape) in her teen years but we were not aware of it as she felt ashamed to share. Then with her luck she had to endure absence of sex in her marriage for a long stretch of time due to no fault of her own (and I am not just saying this – it has been proved) interspersed with violent marital rape. I am not saying(and didn’t say it in my earlier comment) that your article didn’t condemn molestation, rape(marital or otherwise) but the way it was written gave me the feeling of you just debating an issue while striping the issue of all human trauma associated with it. You also wrote in your reply to my first comment ‘NOT HAVING SEX IS SURELY A GROUND FOR DIVORCE…SO GO AHEAD AND GET ONE’. IS SOMEONE GOING TO GET JAILTIME FOR NOT HAVING SEX WITH THEIR SPOUSE? IF THAT BE THE CASE, WHAT IS MARITAL RAPE? IF NOT HAVING SEX IS CRUELTY AND THE PERSON NOT GIVING THE SEX IS THE PERPETRATOR, THEN MARITAL RAPE IS NOT A CRIME….IT IS THE ASSERTION OF A LEGAL RIGHT” The way these lines were written was the last straw for me because to me it seemed you were just debating a point completely ignoring the greatest assets of all human beings – the feelings. It is one thing for someone to dehumanize an issue and talk about it on technical grounds but the reality is of something else because one has to include the parameter called human mind/feelings. I for sure know what my sister went through – it was not so easy for her to go and get a divorce like the way you wrote in spite of she being a working lady. She felt guilty because of the perpetrator in her teen years, she felt unwanted as there was no sex in her life, she felt miserable to wash her linen in public, she felt violated several times over – once by her perpetrator, then by her husband and finally by the society and she committed suicide. So you see, we have gone through all these. I know what the tests are and what can be deduced in spite of not having beaten up marks ( as suggested by one of your readers).Obviously it is extremely painful for me to discuss anything further. So I won’t go into any counter comments etc.
    I am sorry if you still feel that I am harsh on you – I have quoted the exact lines in spite of some snide remarks by few of your readers ( I refuse to reply to their comments whether they understand my points/predicaments or not) – I have shared a very personal tragic situation with you only because I want you to know that you as a well liked and well respected writer who is tolerant to adverse criticism( which often crosses even this era’s boundaries), who is gender neutral and who does not have any hidden agenda in his posts should take into consideration the greatest assets of all in human beings life – the human feelings for his writings and be sensitive enough to not dehumanize the issue when you write/reply on something as volatile as this topic. Thanks again for writing on this topic. I have written in previous posts how time constrained my life is, yet I read the whole article, my comment, your comment and your last comment before replying for the last time on this issue.I did it for a woman whom I knew so well who happened to be my sister. I think she deserves at least this much from the family, society which she was a part of. She was an intelligent, hard working, extremely tolerant, beautiful and extrovert – liked by all but a few. I miss her. I think she was born under the wrong sun.

  43. @Yourfan: I am sorry to read the tragic story of your sister. I’m sure none of my fellow readers of Arnab’s blog would feel anything but sympathy for your sister. None of which changes the situation – the law passed as is is too likely to be abused, and hence should not have been passed in this form, without some sensible safeguards.

    Unfortunately, do you know what will happen once the law is passed? People like your sister will not use the law to protect themselves – when tragic circumstances like hers didn’t prompt her to seek divorce (with the existing law entirely on her side), do you think she would have taken protection under this law? Pardon me for intruding into your grief, but in my experience, when a person is prevented by shame and fear of social stigma into not seeking a legal escape, bringing in more draconian laws will not encourage the victim of domestic violence into seeking legal protection.

    Except for a few rare cases (which will be highlighted by the distaff side of the media), which most of us will support, the law will be silently abused, rather than used. And like the issue of reservation, there will be no going back. Even if it is proven beyond doubt that the law has failed to achieve its objectives, no government will have the courage to repeal this act. And that will be the greater tragedy.

  44. Cheating and fooling the Indian Women for Vote bank!!!
    Sub: Cheating and fooling the Indian Women for Vote bank!!!

    Please read the interview of Renuka Chowdhury(link here).

    If any LAW maker does not have the sufficient knowledge, then why they make such a stupid LAW??

    The question is unanswered, what punishment you will recommended, when a dishonest daughter in law ( Modern Supnakhas ) , abuse our mother and sister ??
    More at :
    http://www.indiatalking.com/blog/swarup/4468/

  45. Your fan,

    While what happened to your sister is indeed despicable and I don’t think anyone sane can condone that, I still think you were not being fair to GB. While, truly enough, for those who have not undergone this kind of tragedy, it is difficult to understand how much it could mean to someone like you, while not providing sex for whatever reason is surely a ground for divorce, it can’t be said to be curelty. And I would go one step ahead and say that it should be upto an individual how he defines lack of sex.

  46. Have you heard the somewhat pithy expression among Bengali lawyers
    “shami (holo) ashami” [“husband (is) the defendant”].

    So unclear how “new” some of this is … maybe a case of making the
    de facto -> de jure?

    –psb

  47. @Ashish Gupta: Indeed turn the tables and the shit hits the fan. The radical feminists are out in full force condemning the statements and condemning anyone who does not condemn the statement. But for this? As Rohan said “You go girl”.

    @Vasabjit: Sorry cannot buy that line of reasoning. Giving a particular class freedom to oppress the other does not sound like empowerment but more like retribution. I think the reason Indira Gandhi imposed Emergency was because of personal paranoia, an obsessive belief that the CIA were plotting to kill ladla Sanjay, a paranoia that she justified by pointing out to the butchery of Mujib’s family. This explanation given by Pupul Jayakar in her autobiography seemed to me the most realistic given the type of person Indira Gandhi was.

    @Confused: Those who want to believe we are the same person are still free to believe that I have engineered this fight with myself. No convincing them.

    @Shan: Heh.

    @Yourfan:

    Let me start out with condolences for your sister. And let me clarify that my intentions are never to dehumanize anyone or be flip about anyone’s sufferings while blogging….however I do have to discuss things dispassionately and clinically. If that seems heartless, then all I can say is that that was not the intention.

    I think I have said all I had to say in my defence and for clarifying my point and see no wisdom in repeating or recasting it.

    In conclusion, I am sure your sister is now at a better place and that’s perhaps all the solace we can have.

    @Swati: And then do unto the “modern Surpanakhas” (ref: the commenter above you–Swarup) as they do unto you.

    @PSB: Thought that was the title of a Jatra “Swami Keno Asami” and its sequel “Baba Keno Chakor”

  48. @Yourfan,

    I know that you do not want to dignify me with a response. But I have to agree with Confused: you are being intensely unfair to Arnab, a person whose fan you declare yourself to be.

    Whatever personal history you have is not something that is public knowledge and so I find it puzzling why you think Arnab has to be sensitive to something he does not even know. From what I see of Arnab he is extremely sensitive to human suffering and unlike a few idiots on the blogosphere can recognize human misery without any political filters. I am sure you also recognize this. Given his record, calling him insensitive, is I think rather insensitive.

    I am also puzzled why you are so obsessed with the denial of sex and for husbands pretending to be good men in front of the world while not having sex at home.[I understand the personal incident that has set you off…but on this blog we are discussing logic and principle. Your sister’s husband may have been a despicable man but we are not discussing him but husbands, in general.]

    What makes a husband/wife deny sex? Yes some people are control freaks and like to define sex on their own terms as a means for exercising control (If I want, I deny; when I want, I take). But most people are not like that and judging them is where we get into a grey area. As an example: if my wife denies me sex and if she justifies it by saying that I have become overweight and no longer attractive then whose fault is it? My wife’s for not accepting me as I am? Or mine for letting myself go because I have taken sex with my wife as granted and hence feel no need to keep myself attractive and fit?

    I presume you found the oral sex thing offensive but when you say “implicit contract” I have to ask who defines this implicit contract? If my wife gave me oral sex before marriage and has now stopped is it her fault for violating an implicit contract (that being her behavior before marriage will continue after it)? Is she taking me for granted? Or is she not doing it because I no longer buy her roses? (Shan, please no offense)

    In any case, why do we need a court to step in to enforce sex ? More importantly how can a court step in?

    Marital rape is physical abuse and it is possible for a court to take action against it (I accept proving it is tough). But denial of sex is something you cannot take action against (without sanctioning marital rape i.e. make a spouse have sex when he/she is unwilling) except to grant divorce.

    And for italics, here is how to do it: http://www.pageresource.com/html/textags.htm

  49. Arnab,

    Retribution: equalization of opportunity. You see, the ‘bhadralok’ in Calcutta never quite comprehended why year in and year out the CPM continues to remain in power. The landless agricultural laborers, the lower castes/class, and the minorities in rural Bengal (with a history of relgious violence) consider the CPM as their moutpiece. Unless an alternative at the rural level is found, no one will be able to replace the CPM. In personal terms, ‘our servants vote for our political masters’. Why? The CPM controlled local government delivers public goods (law and order, rudimentary health care, primary education) and selective incentives (land rights, informal employment insurance, and collective bargaining rights). As you can comprehend, all of these ‘goods’ are bad for some other sections of society.

    As about Indira Gandhi and Emergency: as a political scientist, I cannot believe that one person, however powerful, can change the entire nature of the regime. Even Hitler or Stalin required supporters for their political violence. Lower levels of violence, of course, would have more supporters and less opposition. The Indian bureaucracy, the urbanised middle class, and the middle peasantry were firmly behind her on this. Personal Paranoia, as a thesis may work as a movie script or a biography (as an academic I comprehend: one has to sell the book), but in terms of social science, it is absolutely impossible to fully configure a person’s motivations, notion of self, other, and/or psychological constructions of socio-political values and needs. Yes, I agree with the notion that her paranoia was a variable, but it certainly was not the central or only one. Thus, your refutation remains incomplete.

    Cheers,

    VB

  50. Yourfan writes:
    @GB: Thank you for your understanding. Your reply was the nicest and a very sensitive one in the sense it was very reserved and solemn. I reiterate that I reacted because of the tone of the writing and not the content as never did you justify rape – marital or otherwise. But I must mention that I sincerely wish you as a writer (not as a lawyer – that is their job to discuss it ‘dispassionately and clinically’) be more sensitive to include pain and ordeal of others in your writing specially in a sensitive topic like this. And a good writer need not know the exact nature and magnitude of pains of others first hand (as one of your reader suggested) in order to incorporate that in his writings. An artist (a writer is one such) who can touch the soft chord of human feelings in his art form becomes successful and revered and that is why we still react and cry when we see Pather Panchali – Ray did not discuss the villagers’ life and their pain and aspirations clinically and dispassionately. I read your blog because you are a good writer – I don’t read you as a lawyer or as a would be politician or as a preacher or any such thing. Of course you might say that you were talking about the Law. On my part I never mentioned that whatever I am writing or thinking is only relating to the Law. I must again point out that I was just talking about the attitude of the society in general. The law is a reflection of the society’s problem, relating attitude and the capability to handle the problem in a humane way. While on this topic let me tell you that my sister’s ex husband is not an aberration (as one of your readers has called him an aberration) – there are so many so called aberrant right here in India about whom I am not in a mood to talk about here. Trust me woman in India in general don’t wish to talk about their problems relating their private lives even in a virtual world. That is why most people think these to be aberration.
    Anyway, lastly, as one of your readers has written that my disagreement with your expression/writing style (not the content) is not befitting to yourfan “a … fan you declare yourself to be.” Since you did not refute it I am asking you whether you feel the same way. In that case when I visit your blog next time I shall sign in as anon and not as yourfan. Please let me know.

  51. @Vasabjit: I tend to think that political scientists tend to overnanalyze and ascribe macro dimensions to events that are often shaped by the personality of the individual in control. In the 70s, IG was almost an undisputed despot and had the power to affect the country by her paranoia. As far as I know, most bureaucrats were caught by surprise by the Emergency and most of them objected….some publicly and some privately.

    @Yourfan: I disagree—I do not think I did anything to trivialize anyone’s pain and did not have an insensitive “tone” in any of my comments. However you are free to disagree with me regarding the “tone” just as I am free to disagree with you in that no insensitivity was intended or conveyed. Lastly, I think what the reader (Rohan) said was that as someone who considers herself as a “fan” (and hence someone who likes and regularly follows what I write) you maybe would understand that I am not by nature an insensitive person with agendas and that you would take my history of opinions into consideration before saying that I need to show more sensitivity.

    I do not think he said that being a fan you cannot criticize/disagree with me.

    Finally, whether you choose to sign yourself in as Yourfan or as Anon I totally leave up to you….and again there is no conflict between criticizing me and being “my fan”.

    Again my condolences for your sister and let me repeat there was no intent to be insensitive. You are a long time reader on my blog and I would not like for a misunderstanding to persist.

    I hope we can move onto my next post and hope to read your comments there.

  52. Dear YOURFAN,

    I was immensely sad reading about your sister’s plight and the saddest possible denouement.

    Actually, I had suspected reading your first comment that it must be something very personal. As it turns out, it is about someone very close to you. If you analyze, your sister’s case was one extreme end of the spectrum, one of many cases for which laws like these were born. But the main pivot of GB’s post was about the flaw in the law, which in order to mend one situation, is chiselling its way into another flaw, leaving men vulnerable to potential abuse.

    Now it would be unfair to expect you therefore after what your sister had gone through to judge this post from a very detached perspective. But GB, great blogger that he may be, is not a psychologist who can wade through layers of complex emotions manifested in your comment to understand your scars. There was a definite lack of communication here, which resulted in mistrust and sowed the seeds of potential animosity.

    It is therefore inevitable that no matter however neutral a mindset you analyze this issue with, you are bound to end up in a quagmire of emotions. I reiterate that your sister’s case was a very sorry thing to happen. Shame on our society for allowing a haunting past to keep on haunting the haunted years after the occurance of the incident…all this due to its judgemental nature.

    If you take my advice…..further clarification of points on this post will serve no good purpose or add nothing new to this discussion. So please stop commenting on this post unless of course it aids you as an act of catharsis. If I know GB well, he will be delighted to find your comments on this blog later as he has done in the past in your original name.

    GB: Again, if i may suggest, please consider what I have said above before doing minute analysis of her comment on topics of this nature and shape your replies accordingly.

  53. @GB
    While discussing the concept of equality, showing the picture of a woman showing her fist to a man ( not in context of the movie) doesn’t come across sensitive enough. GB, you come across sensible enough in most of your writings but there were certain times where you might have just missed the full score by a fraction and this picture is one such case. But you are forgiven because despite being a good sensible human being, you are a MAN..
    Men and Women are never equal and never will be an equal, our society has evolved that way. Of course in our day to day life, being a woman we do get some advantages but that does not make woman more equal. Oh! PLEASE
    A women being tortured and battered mentally and physically, in day to day life is disproportionately higher and most of us agree to that, so why the cribbing? Most of us are worried about how this law will be abused and there is no denying that it will be, but the people who will try to abuse it, they would do it anyway, law or no law, like someone was mentioning about his sil.
    Most women would not try to wreck her marriage just because a new law is there in town to empower her just a little bit more. But imagine if this new law helps thousands of women who are burnt to death for dowry or for a progeny and if the offender is a mil or sil she should have to suffer the consequences also.

  54. @Suzi: Please go back and read the piece. The law exists to protect us *all* and not just the “common cases”. If that doesnt sound convincing please go back and read it again. And then please read Renuka Chowdhary saying it’s payback time for men. Yes the person who wrote the law, the brains behind the law—which makes the motivation behind the law crystal clear. Making the law applicable for both men and women wouldn’t have hurt women you know? Now you are a WOMAN and I suppose I can insert a gender-specific comment here (like you did)….but shall desist, one of the reasons being that there all the other woman commenters previous to you have acknowledged the bias inherent in the law (ergo it is not a matter of MAN and WOMAN as people like Ms. Renuka like to perceive) And that picture–an attempt at humour. Lost on some people it seems.

    Rohan’s ex-sister-in-law was misusing 498A which has several loopholes and this law is just another weapon in the hands of such people like Rohan’s ex-sister-in-law. While you are right that bad people always find a way, it does not make sense to provide them such a weapon so that their designs are facilitated.

  55. @ GB
    I do get the humor but in my judgement it was rather a misfitted one, may be became more misfitted because the discussion turned out to be a serious one. And my comment about you being a Man and loosing some fractions in the sensitivity scale was given in a light mood but you are welcome to give a fitting reply to that.

  56. @Suzi: The discussion may turn out to be a serious one but I don’t think that the picture (which is on the post and not on the comments) has got anything to do with the tone of the comments. The serious issue was about marital rape and sexual responsibility in marriage and should it be enforced by law and not about the fairness (or the absence of it) of the Woman’s Bill itself —- there is no dispute there.

    As a matter of fact it was originally on Yourfan (who is gender-neutral and fair)’s suggestion of highlighting the bias in the law that I wrote the post and on which we even now have no disagreement. This picture makes fun of the “Now it’s payback time” attitude of Renuka Chowdhury (she is the Sushmita) which I believe is what drove this law (aside from politics) and led to to the bias that is encoded in it.

    I would have understood the humour inherent in calling me insensitive because I am male if for instance I could call you [insert any female stereotypical behaviour here] because you are female and have people get the joke instead of calling me sexist. But that doesnt happen does it? Equality again you see is what I am striving for.

  57. Arnab,

    Read your reply as an academic: explicitly frame your response as an opinion. Critiquing one’s field, while offering incomplete evidence is perhaps suitable for journalists, not us folks.

    Thanks for moving to another issue; the discussion on this one has become too personal and opinionated. As you could have comprehended, I am not in agreement with you on certain issues here. However, by bringing up these issues in a thought provoking fashion, I think you have done us all a great service.

    Cheers,

    VB

  58. Hi Arnab, I am a regular visitor to greatbong site, but so far limited myself only to reading. But after seeing this post and also the responses, I wanted to respond as I feel entire issue of domestic violence is being trivialized. It is an undeniable fact that even today many women are harrassed with dowry demands resulting in in-laws murdering the woman or the woman forced to commit suicide.

    In case all you guys are not aware, dowry demands are very much common place even in educated society today. I come from Andhrapradesh, and this dowry menace/demands for grand marriages etc is prevalent in almost all castes/sections of socity. I have personally seen many of my friends and relatives being harrassed with lot of demands before and after marriage. Some of them were brave enough to get divorce and lead their own life, but it happens only if the woman in question is educated, sustain herself through some job, and her own parents atleast support her. But the husband and in-laws who abused the woman mentally/physically just go scotfree, even if the woman is courageous enough to file for divorce. Don’t you people think the people who perpetrate the crime should be punished?

    The law as such may have loopholes. I personally think, the perpetrator could be any one husband, father-in-law, mother-in-law, siter-in-law etc., And I know in many cases it is not husband alone who is the perpetrator, the MIL and/or SIL would definitely be part of the crime as well. So, the law need not have fixed the gender of responded. But atleast this law is a first step to officially recognizing domestic violence. The law can get corrected over time with more provisions for justice to every one and may be tighter controls. But which law in india, or for that matter any country, would be perfect at the time of introduction?

    People can argue that even men are subjected to domestic violence, but lets accept it, India is primarily male-dominated society with huge percentage of parents preferring male child (even today barring some educated families), and not really putting in money/care to educate girl child. In such scenario, large percentage of women are still oppressed. So, lets not trivialize the issue of domestic violence against women, and compare this to the disgusting reservation scenario by reading the fine-print of law.

  59. Forgive me for failing to see how any issue is being “trivialized”. Again for the umpeenth time let me repeat: the law exists to protect us all and not the most “common victims”. And why, going by your logic, is the “reservation scenario” disgusting —after all people can, using your logic, point out that all kind of atrocities /opportunities denied pepetrated on lower castes, (now and historically) and say “Do not trivialize their suffering by protesting against losing your job (i.e. reservations).” It is essentially the same thing—except that in one you may find yourself on one side and on the other—the other. This new law is a weapon in the hands of women with agendas, it is unfair and it was formulated by a woman who thinks that men deserve it as retribution for centuries of oppression. I do not think saying that (with supporting evidence) in any way trivializes the suffering of women due to dowry demands.

  60. Confessions of a verbally battered wife (not physically, I weigh two kilos more, yippee!)

    Yesterday, after breakfast, politely asked for the morning paper.
    Husband– “Here chu-chu-chu, come and get it”. (Making sounds indicating affection for canine species.)
    Me–“Bow wow, grrrrr! I’ll file an FIR in Titagarh thana. You have labelled me as a dog and are hoping to get away with it. (In a more anxious voice) Fats, do you think they will take me seriously?”
    Husb– “Oh yes, they are bound to. First thing first, they are going to dump you in the State Mental Hospital”.
    Me–” Are you calling me a MAD DOG?!? Buster, you have asked for it!”
    I slobber over him and attempt to lick his face. Also make disgusting kissing sounds as his mother is looking on and dying of laughter.
    Husb–“Help!Help! Rabid dog attack!”
    Mom-in-law–“Here, break it up. That’s enough”
    Me–“What do you mean enough? Didn’t you hear him?”
    MIL–“Well, of course you are not mad. Just loony.”
    Husb–giving his mom dark looks–“It’s your fault, you went and selected her to be your daughter-in-law.”(Goes out, slamming the door.)

  61. I haven’t read all comments, maybe someone already mentioned this
    – Does this law take care of mother in law’s abusing bahus, bahus abusing mother in law, sis in law abusing the bahu, vice versa,

    mother abusing daughter – thats not impossible

    Arnab, u make a good point that the victim and the criminal shud not be hard coded by gender.

    BTW, about innocent untill proven guilty, thats not how most laws for women work in our country. in college I learnt that to strengthen an otherwise vulnerable women who would find it very difficult to prove that she was assaulted/abused by her in laws for the sake of dowry, the onus to prove innocent was put on the accused.

  62. @Anu:

    “People can argue that even men are subjected to domestic violence, but lets accept it, India is primarily male-dominated society…”

    So what? Does that justify unfair laws? Laws biased against men just because they are men? That’s just plain stupid!

    And some of the justifications given by readers boggles the mind. Agreed that our patriarchal socioety has heaped enormous violence on women through the ages. How can you correct historical injustice by reversing the recepient of that injustice? It still remains unjust, right?

    Would you agree to a solution where the Blacks in SA, after coming to power, banished the Whites to segregated schools and denied them a role in public life, pushed them to stay in reservations, and forbade them entry to Blacks Only clubs and buildings? Because they were reversing historical injustice?

    I am sure you will poke holes in my analogy (and it might be imperfect), but the fact is that if the law is unjust by its very nature, someone, be it women or men, or whites or blacks, or muslims or hindus, or daughters-in-law or mothers-in-law, will always be oppressed by that law.

    @Arnab:

    I totally agree with you when you said that the women who are battered and poor and living under oppressive societal norms will NOT be benefited by this law because they will never file a complaint against the husband anyway. Or they will just have no knowledge that such a law exists at all. But it will give another weapon in the hands of the urban educated woman to confront her husband (and in laws) with. A weapon that they have no protection against.

    The potential for misuse, especially where potential huge amounts of monies in alimony and restitution payments is concerned, is huge.

    But leave all that aside. Because that is all in the realm of possibility. The simple fact that there is this law that is discriminatory by its very nature should be enough for all logical individuals to oppose it.

    Simple.

  63. coming late to this discussion… i agree with GB’s line of thought.. there should have been safeguards to this law so that this may not be misused…. no matter what we feel but it is absolutely necessary that one is presumed innocent until proven guilty. This basic premise of law cannot be risked or tampered with.

  64. Wow, I knew this would come from you after reading the comments on your other article. The “Concept of Equality” topic deserves its own blog. There are sooooo many issues. I hope this law gets changed to include men (may be someday include the fact that perpetrators can be of the same gender too). What about David Gest who filed domestic violence law suit against his wife Liza Minelli stating that she drinks too much alcohol and physically abuses him.

    PS: I can probably contribute more to this citing a lot of examples where men are being treated unfairly. But, since my fiancee also reads this blog, I have to keep my mouth shut. May be she will file a suit against me saying this comment hurt her emotionally.

  65. @GB,
    This post is regarding the Fairness of the new law which supposedly is for the protection of women against Domestic Violence and it is questionable in its present form and I vouch for it.
    This was not a post about equality, so me bringing up the equality issue was not just. But do you think if Women were really,really equal to Man, this picture would have had the same humor quotient?

  66. This Law highlights the importance of wider debate BEFORE any Act is passed. A similar situation is being seen wrt the SEZ Act.

    Btw, before blaming/crediting the current Minister, note that the Bill was originally introduced in 2002 by the NDA govt., and re-introduced with minor changes by the UPA govt.

    For a context of the debate within the Committee that discussed this Bill in detail, see:
    http://rajyasabha.nic.in/book2/reports/HRD/Report124th.htm

    The report also lists the people who deposed before the Committee.

  67. @Swati: LOLz..

    @Sriram: “in college I learnt that to strengthen an otherwise vulnerable women who would find it very difficult to prove that she was assaulted/abused by her in laws for the sake of dowry, the onus to prove innocent was put on the accused”

    What do you mean “was put on the accused”? Where? I hope you realize that this goes against the very principles of normal justice?

    @Shan: Agree.

    @Divya: And totally agree with that too.

    @Rasputin_KY: Wise. Very wise.

    @Suzi: This picture would be hilarious in whatever context it was used. And particularly in the context of a Bill whose champion says that “Men should suffer for what their previous generations have inflicted” I think it is particularly apt.

    @Madhavan: Thank you for the link.

  68. Supreme Court of India called,”Dowry Law is a Shield, not an Assassin’s weapon”.

    Suicide Statistics from Indian National Crime Bureau show, 44.7% of all suicides in India are due to married men where as only 25% are by married women.

    Do we want to double this suicide rate or married Men?

    If you include verbal abuse, insults, ridicule into domestic violence, then women are not far behind men as perpetrators of domestic violence.

    By the way, we are still searching for the UNDP or UNFPA source which says that 70% of Indian Owmne face domestic violence.

    UNFPA reports this figure as 19% women who faced domestic violence ever. Feminists are manufacturing lies.

  69. Pingback: Global Voices Online » Blog Archive » India: Gender Bias in the Domestic Violence Law

  70. Every fight willbe tougher then the first one and remember we have nothing to lose.

    PM would have been told by indira jaising brinda carrot or her ilks to apeak like these. Many of the womens activists are the ones who have harassed their husbands ( claiming victim hood using drama ) .Examples
    1. Indira Jaisingh ( divorcee )
    2. Gowrama ( divorcee)
    3. Falvia Agnes ( divorcee)
    4. Brinda carrot ( no child )
    5. Donna fernandes ( ? )
    6. Madhu Kishwar ( Single bad experience in love )
    7. GIrija Vyas ( single bad experience in love ? )
    & these are chosen to talk on family matter !!!!! It looks like their law drafting is a collective vindictivemness on men

    Let us be honest we are capable folks and we are fighting for independent justice. Unless PM speaks out against the sucide caused by harassment initiated by wifes he cannot be seen to be independent mind

  71. Men want DV Law because it is chivalry which drives them. Men would like to compete against other men for sex. From the male judge to male liberal, it is natural for everyone to think that,”if one man is deprived of sex, my chances of getting sex increases”.

    So, its a battle between men for sex. Many male who passed this law or implement this law sleep with hundreds of women. One can google for “Mysore Sex Scandal” to find the truth.

    If they have gut, let them remove rigid contempt of court laws, the real fun will begin.

  72. GB,
    great post and good to see that the quality on comments on it is pretty good too (most of it) …
    While I agree with both your points, I believe the second point i.e. the ease with which this law can be misused (guilty till proven innocent stuff) is a bigger concern out here which needs immediate rectification.
    Infact I recently read in one of the newspapers that lots of helplines are getting calls from men who are scared that this law will be misused against them.

  73. A good post and well-written as ever.

    However since you seem to be puzzled by all the reactions stating that you have ‘trivialized’ domestic violence, let me try and explain what strikes me when I read your post.

    It seems to me to be a unjustified defence of men’s rights of a phenomenon you know very little about. I don’t think you have written a single post exclusively devoted to the issue of women’s rights or domestic violence – infact, going by your previous posts, you’ve rather upheld your view of equality, which not a few women have found to be a little – shall we say – insensitive.

    So, for a person who is not admittedly a sympathiser of women’s rights, who has absolutely no knowledge of the social ethos in which Indian women live and who thinks incidents like yourfan’s sister are isolated cases – yes, the bleeding-heart take on poor abused men does come out sounding a like a view that trivializes domestic violence.

    It would have been much nicer if you could have gone into domestic violence against women a little deeper instead of just addressing the issue with standard disclaimers like ‘I would like to go on record saying I do not condone marital rape, domestic violence, etc. etc.’

  74. @Nisha: Mildly amused but not surprised at your very selective interpretation of the comment thread.The point of conflict between me and another commenter was on marital rape…if you look very closely (or alternatively read with an open mind) this particular commenter was even more emphatic about the unfairness of the said Act….and was the person (female) who, in a previous comment thread, urged me to write a post highlighting the unfairness of this Bill and of the culture of radical feminism and told me not to be fazed by people like yourself.

    Unjustified defense of men’s rights in which men are assumed to be guilty by default and the victim is defined to be a woman? And pointing that out means I am not a sympathizer of woman’s rights? This is what amazes me—the bigotry and chauvinism that passes for “sympathy to woman’s rights” where even justified and argued points in opposition to a Bill championed by a woman who publicly declares her intention to make men pay is interpreted as being insensitive toward’s violence towards women.

  75. I just thought I’d add my lawyer’s two bits on this point: “I thought that one of the assumptions of jurisprudence was that an accused is innocent till proven guilty. Evidently not.”

    In most cases it is true that the burden of proof lies with the prosecution. However, the burden of proof is sometimes reversed. Several statutes here in the UK reverse the burden of proof. It is true that this conflicts with the principle of the presumption of innocence. Thus, the right to a presumption of innocence is not always absolute. The courts in the UK have dealt with this problem by holding that a statute may place a legal burden of proof on the defendant in pursuit of a legitimate aim so long as the nature of the burden is proportionate to the aim to be achieved. There is a lot of academic comment and case-law on this which is very interesting.

    In most situations, I am a firm supporter of the presumption of innocence, but I can see the logic behind this bit of legislation, because of the realities I’ve had to face in legal practice. Women often do not report cases of sexual harassment, rape and domestic violence all over the world, for a variety of different reasons, one of them being because they believe nothing will come of it. The police in India regularly send women back home to “adjust,” indeed they did so in one case within a week of this law’s having come into force. Not only do they have to face the hurdle of going to the police, there are a host of other factors, such as societal fear, rejection by parents, financial dependance etc. Added to that, having to prove that you have been raped, beaten or sexually harassed is hugely traumatic and often very difficult in practice, because of the often hidden nature of these acts, given that they take place in the private sphere of the home.

    It is a sad reality that very often it IS only their own testimony that women can produce as evidence, because no one else will speak up for them-not even the law enforcement agencies or their parents. The only other person who can provide evidence is the doctor, but usually the woman who is beaten doesn’t even have access to one. One client of mine was regularly kicked, and then locked into the house so that she couldn’t ask for help and no one else would see her injuries. By the time they healed and she was allowed out again, the shame of speaking about them stopped her from doing anything for 20 years. The stage at which she brought legal proceedings was when she was beaten so badly, her face started falling apart (she couldn’t open her eyes,her lower lip was torn off) and this scared her husband into taking her to the doctor. She was so frightened and cowed down by her husband she told the doctor she had fallen down the stairs!

    Lawyers see instances such as these day in and day out, with women educated and undeucated, in India even more so. Thus while the court may find for a woman on her “sole testimony”, the key word in this legislation is “may.” It may not either, it may not be satisfied with her evidence or it may not be satisfied that she is telling the truth.

  76. My point was not about the loophole in the law – I think logically speaking anyone would agree its something of a gap and should be addressed.

    My point was about why you come across as trivializing domestic violence. And it is amply illustrated in the first paragraph of your reply to me.

    Yourfan’s personal tragedy and the dignity with which she speaks of it, makes her assertion about the law doubly more convincing than yours. Yours is written with a light, flippant hand, glossing over the real terrors of domestic violence to claim legal brownie points for men.

    I would suggest you stick to Mithunda and the likes in future rather than attempt to sound knowedgeable about horrors you know nothing about in your comfortably ensconced position.

    I pray to God you never have to find out either.

  77. What is the Problem for “Domestic Harmony act” where irrespective of any gander or caste , who ever will do the crime will be punished equally?
    If we think , women does not do the domestic violence , then they will not be punished …
    or
    It is to save gurd those Bad women of our society to do thier crime as a whole sale free lincence , that is the reason this LAW had been made , where the basic foundation of any LAW had been denied ( to investigate who is right and who is wrong).

    Wonder , when people will accept the truth and work towards the harmony of the gander instead of incresing the violence.

    We have not learned from our mistake inspite of Supreme court caution about 498a to lead a legal terrorism.

    At last, A LAW where the truth will be exposed will be always well come instead of doing some thing to increse the hater to each other.
    At last , dear women reder , please read the law carefully , you can also will be trap under this DV act , if any women want to take revenge against you .
    The failure of this law here , in the name of protection of women not only injustice against women , it is injustice against good women also, as this give a whole sale free lincence to bad women of our society and bad men of our society.

  78. As a man and a lawyer who is very much in support of the new Bill, its perhaps important to point out a couple of things. Firstly, the presumption of innocence has often been modified in special cases, where parties are in unequal power relations. One of the best examples, is the Indian Penal Code, which in cases of rape in police custody, places a presumption of rape on the policeman. And perhaps very rightly so, given the impossibility of a woman prisoner being able to

    Its hard perhaps, living in urban middle class India to understand the level of prejudice there is against women in the criminal justice system. The famous Mathura Rape case aquitted the rapists because the woman had apparently not clawed the perpetrator (the lack of injuries signifying consent), the fact that a armed policman might have shot her if she protested wasn’t considered. More recently in the Bhanwari Devi case, the Rajastan High Court held that no upper caste man would defile himself by raping a dalit woman.

    Similiar argumentss were used aganst s.498-A which also criminalizes violence by the husband on the wife and are aptly rebutted here http://www.indiatogether.org/2004/mar/law-sect498a.htm

    There are no universally held principles of natural justice. A lot of these principles were made by people when it suited them, take for instance the U.S attitude to international law, sometimes to achieve real equality one need go beyond formal equality.

    Swarup Sarkar can and should be sued for libel. Flavia Agnes story is well documented. She was abused and beaten by her husband and denied custody of her children. She decided to go to lawschool in her mid thirties and sort of stood on her feet. Indira Jaisingh is married, and her husband is a succesful lawyer. Brinda Karat also makes quite a power couple.

    Debating facts apart, I really don’t see how the background of some of the hundreds of women and men who have been campaigning for this bill in any way take away from its content.

    As a lawyer, I also have healthy scepticism of its potential. Previous legislation on domestic violence has hardly managed to curb the problem and its unlikely that this law is going to make huge difference.

  79. After interaction with a lot of people in different field including
    Laywers/media/common people:-
    1. If any one write for Men( amy be few) , 90% cases it is women
    only.
    2. Men does not brother and over confidence fool.
    3. In my mobile , maximum case , ( more than 70%) , call comes from
    women only ( mother/ssiters).

    At the end , my view , women understand waht we want to say easily
    than men ( for a Normal human who do not face the 498a or any women
    biased law).

    But at the end , some bad women really making life of all miserable
    and people are loosing the respect towards women slowly and if this
    does not stop , crime will increse , which concerns me more.
    I belive men are from “Mars” and women are form “Venus”.
    No Law can cahnge that and the more we will try , the more we will
    suffer , but which our LAW maker do not understand.

    Self respect comes , by your hard earning money , by grabing others
    money and enjoying the same without taking any responsibility
    nothing but cheating.
    It is applicable for both men and women.
    But it seems our LAW maker thing husabnd killing is the Nobel work,
    grabing husabnds money and property is women empowerment.

  80. Army men specially junior / non officer ranks remain away from their
    wives for such a long period of time that there is always scope from
    misunderstanding.
    Now that these legal sharupnakhas have spread their tentacles to even
    small cities of india, they have been inciting many army / bsf wives
    to file 498a cases against army personnel.

    could it be one of the reason for increased fragging in the army,
    junior rankers killing officers, we need to get two three case data on
    that, i am trying my end and put that in media to atleast someone wake
    up to relity of this draconian law and minset of sharupnakhas.

    To Save Indian Society
    Tomorrow
    Save Your Family
    TODAY.

  81. Husabnd Killers are moving freely in our Society , who knows you will not be the Next?

    In this Country Husabnd Killers get Goverment Award , In this Country Husabnd Killer get Movie Award ..

    Wonder , why I have to say “I am a Proud Indian”.

    Husabnd Killers Jindabad!!!

    Husabnd Killers Jindabad!!!

    Husabnd Killers Jindabad!!!

    This we want to say???

    Let the Whole Nation Decide , what they want More and More “Violence” or “Harmony”.

  82. Youngsters, if your parent’s are illiterate or do not have knowledge about the LAW, SINCERELY CAUTION YOU, BEWARE and acknowledge yourself and your parents before marriage, else one may possibly gets trapped in a hand of criminal almost as powerful as a felony.

    Before marriage read the “Domestic Violence Act” and 498A.

  83. http://www.ibnlive.com/news/woman-sues-wipro-for-hubbys-dating-allowance/26930-7.html?headline=Wipro~sued~over~'dating~allowance

    Wipro sued over ‘dating allowance’

    “…..Tripti had initially filed a case of domestic violence against her in-laws and the chief metropolitan magistrate’s court had fixed November 25 as the date for submission of replies by Gaurav and his parents………”

    I am an ex-Wiproite and know there is no such allowance. If DA can be read as dating Allowance I wonder what intrepretation Basic will be !!

  84. Dear Army Man,
    I live in a small town near Calcutta. We have a cantonement and a colony of defence personel.
    The husbands are away on postings or on post-army jobs. The wifes are left alone with their in-laws and a kid or two.
    We call this colony– ‘the undesperate housewives’
    Thanks to the young handsome men, these ladies are supposed to have a rollicking time when the husbands are away.
    But when the husbands are back on leave, they are the best of wives, dishing up delicious meals and rendering all services to their lords and masters.
    These ladies perfectly manage a husband alongwith a couple of boyfriends and provide endless amazement to us rotund, unalluring hausfraus with grumpy stay-at-home husbands.
    So, rest assured.
    Some us do know when we are on a good thing.

  85. “COURT DATE: Azim Premji has denied that his company gives its employees a dating allowance.”

    This clearly shows , a bad women can go to such a extent , to extract the money from her Husabnd.
    She want to ensure that his husabnd does not get any job , so she attacks the false calim against the Premji.
    Premji , fight for justice and punish tose liers of our society to set a exmaple for all.

  86. Dear all,
    As my name made publicaly , want to share for clarity , as i think you should have btoh the version..
    She first filed false 498a against my entire family including age old parents and I am the only son of my parents.
    In the court she is in the merge of loosing 498a, as my bank statement shows she had taken money from me , not mine..
    Then filed Domestic violence act , 2005 , after 3years staying seperately , we never meet each other.
    High court put the stay on her application.
    The she paly the dirty game of Domestic violence Act, 2005 against Wipro , just to ensure that I loose the Job.
    Her laywer planning for fight the election at UP , that is the reson all this drama.
    I will fight for justice.

  87. BTW, this is a ‘very’ well written article.

    Hiranyakashyapu was empowered by Bhrama, so would the loosly drafted DV bill empower the cunning. and innocent males and his relatives would suffer at large.

    laws like 498a are still wife centric and not women centric. and DV bill crosses all the limits it also empowers the partner in live-in.

    Marriage has some mechanism of proof. what about Live in ? worst is the law does not have a immediate reality check of the statement of accuser just like 498a.

    and this law is based on statistics where girls side complaint makes a criminal complaint that reflects in the national stats for crime against women. where as max that a police can do for a complain by a boy or a husband is a non congnizable offence, which does not add in to the national statistics of crime.

    every week innocent husbands and his family members are also arrested for a suicide of a wife under 304b. but, recently Rajesh Hasmukh Desai of Ahmedabad committed suicide because of troubled marriage, but police has no mechanism under law to arrest his wife. also suicide statistics have a different story to tell as against the feminst claims.

  88. Is anyone getting the feeling that a lot of these posts above are written by the same person?

    GB, hope you’re happy that now you’re firmly on the side of the ‘save Indian phamily’ psychos…

  89. The Concept of Equality—Once Again.
    GB hope you are right.
    Violence exists , but some thing considered as crime and some thing considered as Nobel work.

  90. No Sue, what you are writing is hate speech directed at me—verbal abuse that is. I can reply in kind but then that would be an offense under your “fair act” wont it?

  91. Yourfan writes:
    @Sue: I am yourfan who in spite of my own personal tragedy strongly believe that men are also abused by women who throw the concept of fairness to wind just to make their agenda/points stand. Remember that in spite of my personal tragedy I think this way because I have witnessed cases where men are abused for no fault of their own. I believe in gender equality. It does not matter which gender does what. If something is wrong for one gender then obviously the same rule should apply to the other gender. I am sorry to say that this new law does not take into consideration the concept of equality (which the feminist right fully demand all the time) but has been wrongly implemented and thus muddle the real issue of domestic violence irrespective of the gender involved. And I also don’t buy the logic of ‘pay back time’. Pay back whom? If one can, then pay back the perpetrator not perpetrator’s gender.

    I was the one who requested GB to write on this new Act as I think that the Act is biased against men in general. Although he was reluctant at first yet I requested him because I honestly believe that he is unbiased, his views are gender neutral, does not have any hidden agenda and a sensitive man. Through his post I wanted to gauge the readers’ reactions/views. In all the major points I agree with him and said that in no uncertain terms. But what I didn’t like in this post of his is his matter of fact suggestion to women who are in any sort of trouble to go for divorce. What he missed in my opinion is lack of empathy in his writing regarding so many difficult parameters (not just financial) – mainly emotional, social factors faced by women who think of getting divorce(whatever the reasons are). To this allegation of mine he replied that was never his intention and I believe him. It seemed that his sensitiveness got sacrificed in the altar of ‘dispassionate and clinical writing’ about this volatile topic.

    But never did I call him names simply because he never once (through all his posts that I have read till date) called anybody names in spite of the strongest provocation. I respect that strength of mind enormously. Believe me, with my personal tragedy it is very hard to remain objective, clinical and dispassionate yet I never called him names – not because I am great and extremely tolerant but only because he does not deserve name calling. But you have called him names and personally attacked him. May be you have even greater tragedy than mine in your life. But does that call for name calling – specially to a person who is no way remotely responsible for your or my agony? You see, these unwarranted name calling/personal attack dilutes the real issues. Where is the scope for name calling? Decency calls for refrain from uncivilized behavior which includes personal attack and name calling. Hope you understand my point.

    Youfan 2: I had to break my silence only because of this wrong accusation of GB which sadly includes personal attack and abuses. I just could not sit idle and not say anything as fairness is a very important point/issue in my life.

    @GB: I am sorry about the name calling and personal attack. I never endorse these types of behavior – I did not do it under tremendous agony although I differed from your clinical, dispassionate observations. I feel indirectly responsible for this misbehavior as I was the one who requested you to write on this volatile subject.Yet I am glad that you wrote on this subject. But I must also point out that I respect you even more for your non reaction to these verbal abuses. Thank you for showing your sensitiveness by not replying to the personal attack and abuses.
    Thank you
    – truly yourfan.

  92. Yourfan writes:
    @Sue: I am yourfan who in spite of my own personal tragedy strongly believe that men are also abused by women who throw the concept of fairness to wind just to make their agenda/points stand. Remember that in spite of my personal tragedy I think this way because I have witnessed cases where men are abused for no fault of their own. I believe in gender equality. It does not matter which gender does what. If something is wrong for one gender then obviously the same rule should apply to the other gender. I am sorry to say that this new law does not take into consideration the concept of equality (which the feminist right fully demand all the time) but has been wrongly implemented and thus muddle the real issue of domestic violence irrespective of the gender involved. And I also don’t buy the logic of ‘pay back time’. Pay back whom? If one can, then pay back the perpetrator not perpetrator’s gender.

    I was the one who requested GB to write on this new Act as I think that the Act is biased against men in general. Although he was reluctant at first yet I requested him because I honestly believe that he is unbiased, his views are gender neutral, does not have any hidden agenda and a sensitive man. Through his post I wanted to gauge the readers’ reactions/views. In all the major points I agree with him and said that in no uncertain terms. But what I didn’t like in this post of his is his matter of fact suggestion to women who are in any sort of trouble to go for divorce. What he missed in my opinion is lack of empathy in his writing regarding so many difficult parameters (not just financial) – mainly emotional, social factors faced by women who think of getting divorce(whatever the reasons are). To this allegation of mine he replied that was never his intention and I believe him. It seemed that his sensitiveness got sacrificed in the altar of ‘dispassionate and clinical writing’ about this volatile topic.

    But never did I call him names simply because he never once (through all his posts that I have read till date) called anybody names in spite of the strongest provocation. I respect that strength of mind enormously. Believe me, with my personal tragedy it is very hard to remain objective, clinical and dispassionate yet I never called him names – not because I am great and extremely tolerant but only because he does not deserve name calling. But you have called him names and personally attacked him. May be you have even greater tragedy than mine in your life. But does that call for name calling? You see, these unwarranted name calling/personal attack dilutes the real issues. Where is the scope for name calling? Decency calls for refrain from uncivilized behavior which includes personal attack and name calling. Hope you understand my point.

    Youfan 2: I had to break my silence only because of this wrong accusation of GB which sadly includes personal attack and abuses. I just could not sit idle and not say anything as fairness is a very important point/issue in my life.

    @GB: I am sorry about the name calling and personal attack. I never endorse these types of behavior – I did not do it under tremendous agony although I differed from your clinical, dispassionate observations. I feel indirectly responsible for this misbehavior as I was the one who requested you to write on this volatile subject. Yet I am glad that you wrote on this subject. But I must also point out that I respect you even more for your non reaction to these verbal abuses. Thank you for showing your sensitiveness by not replying to the personal attack and abuses.
    Thank you
    – truly yourfan.

  93. YOURFAN writes:
    GB: I have sent the following comments twice earlier but it is not showing up. I don’t know why it is happening. If it was any other issue I wouldn’t have taken the trouble to resend again and again. But for this topic and in the light of the personal attack, it is important for me to make sure that readers including you, yourfan2 and Sue read my comments. So in case you find the same comment from me so many times, please delete the extras – it is not my fault.

    @Sue: I am yourfan who in spite of my own personal tragedy strongly believe that men are also abused by women who throw the concept of fairness to wind just to make their agenda/points stand. Remember that in spite of my personal tragedy I think this way because I have witnessed cases where men are abused for no fault of their own. I believe in gender equality. It does not matter which gender does what. If something is wrong for one gender then obviously the same rule should apply to the other gender. I am sorry to say that this new law does not take into consideration the concept of equality (which the feminist right fully demand all the time) but has been wrongly implemented and thus muddle the real issue of domestic violence irrespective of the gender involved. And I also don’t buy the logic of ‘pay back time’. Pay back whom? If one can, then pay back the perpetrator not perpetrator’s gender.

    I was the one who requested GB to write on this new Act as I think that the Act is biased against men in general. Although he was reluctant at first yet I requested him because I honestly believe that he is unbiased, his views are gender neutral, does not have any hidden agenda and a sensitive man. Through his post I wanted to gauge the readers’ reactions/views. In all the major points I agree with him and said that in no uncertain terms. But what I didn’t like in this post of his is his matter of fact suggestion to women who are in any sort of trouble to go for divorce. What he missed in my opinion is lack of empathy in his writing regarding so many difficult parameters (not just financial) – mainly emotional, social factors faced by women who think of getting divorce(whatever the reasons are). To this allegation of mine he replied that was never his intention and I believe him. It seemed that his sensitiveness got sacrificed in the altar of ‘dispassionate and clinical writing’ about this volatile topic.

    But never did I call him names simply because he never once (through all his posts that I have read till date) called anybody names in spite of the strongest provocation. I respect that strength of mind enormously. Believe me, with my personal tragedy it is very hard to remain objective, clinical and dispassionate yet I never called him names – not because I am great and extremely tolerant but only because he does not deserve name calling. But you have called him names and personally attacked him. May be you have even greater tragedy than mine in your life. But does that call for name calling? You see, these unwarranted name calling/personal attack dilutes the real issues. Where is the scope for name calling? Decency calls for refrain from uncivilized behavior which includes personal attack and name calling. Hope you understand my point.

    Youfan 2: I had to break my silence only because of this wrong accusation of GB which sadly includes personal attack and abuses. I just could not sit idle and not say anything as fairness is a very important point/issue in my life.

    @GB: I am sorry about the name calling and personal attack. I never endorse these types of behavior – I did not do it under tremendous agony although I differed from your clinical, dispassionate observations. I feel indirectly responsible for this misbehavior as I was the one who requested you to write on this volatile subject. Yet I am glad that you wrote on this subject. But I must also point out that I respect you even more for your non reaction to these verbal abuses which crosses the most liberal decency level. Thank you for showing your sensitiveness by not replying to the personal attack and abuses.
    Thank you
    – truly yourfan.

  94. YOURFAN writes:

    GB: I have sent the following comments at least thrice(may be more) earlier but it is not showing up. I don’t know why it is happening. If it was any other issue I wouldn’t have taken the trouble to resend again and again. But for this topic and in the light of the personal attack, it is important for me to make sure that readers including you, yourfan2 and Sue read my comments. So in case you find the same comment from me so many times, please delete the extras – it is not my fault.

    @Sue: I am yourfan who in spite of my own personal tragedy strongly believe that men are also abused by women who throw the concept of fairness to wind just to make their agenda/points stand. Remember that in spite of my personal tragedy I think this way because I have witnessed cases where men are abused for no fault of their own. I believe in gender equality. It does not matter which gender does what. If something is wrong for one gender then obviously the same rule should apply to the other gender. I am sorry to say that this new law does not take into consideration the concept of equality (which the feminist right fully demand all the time) but has been wrongly implemented and thus muddle the real issue of domestic violence irrespective of the gender involved. And I also don’t buy the logic of ‘pay back time’. Pay back whom? If one can, then pay back the perpetrator not perpetrator’s gender.

    I was the one who requested GB to write on this new Act as I think that the Act is biased against men in general. Although he was reluctant at first yet I requested him because I honestly believe that he is unbiased, his views are gender neutral, does not have any hidden agenda and a sensitive man. Through his post I wanted to gauge the readers’ reactions/views. In all the major points I agree with him and said that in no uncertain terms. But what I didn’t like in this post of his is his matter of fact suggestion to women who are in any sort of trouble to go for divorce. What he missed in my opinion is lack of empathy in his writing regarding so many difficult parameters (not just financial) – mainly emotional, social factors faced by women who think of getting divorce(whatever the reasons are). To this allegation of mine he replied that was never his intention and I believe him. It seemed that his sensitiveness got sacrificed in the altar of ‘dispassionate and clinical writing’ about this volatile topic.

    But never did I call him names simply because he never once (through all his posts that I have read till date) called anybody names in spite of the strongest provocation. I respect that strength of mind enormously. Believe me, with my personal tragedy it is very hard to remain objective, clinical and dispassionate yet I never called him names – not because I am great and extremely tolerant but only because he does not deserve name calling. But you have called him names and personally attacked him. May be you have even greater tragedy than mine in your life. But does that call for name calling? You see, these unwarranted name calling/personal attack dilutes the real issues. Where is the scope for name calling? Decency calls for refrain from uncivilized behavior which includes personal attack and name calling. Hope you understand my point.

    Youfan 2: I had to break my silence only because of this wrong accusation of GB which sadly includes personal attack and abuses. I just could not sit idle and not say anything as fairness is a very important point/issue in my life.

    @GB: I am sorry about the name calling and personal attack. I never endorse these types of behavior – I did not do it under tremendous agony although I differed from your clinical, dispassionate observations. I feel indirectly responsible for this misbehavior as I was the one who requested you to write on this volatile subject. Yet I am glad that you wrote on this subject. But I must also point out that I respect you even more for your non reaction to these verbal abuses which crosses the most liberal decency level. Thank you for showing your sensitiveness by not replying to the personal attack and abuses.
    Thank you
    – truly yourfan.

  95. @Sue
    Incidently I did get to read both your comments and I could sense the amount of frustrations pouring out of your comments regarding this discussion but nonetheless you should have restrained yourself from these personal comments. Your comments were not addressed to any particular person hence I guess it was towards GB and no matter what, he does not deserve such comments.

    @Nisha
    Like you I also think that this post is completely catered for GB’s male readers. It was indeed quite frustrating to see the comment section. Allthough most of the guys who gave there comments in this post wants to come across as suave, educated, gendre unbiased, know it all kind but in realty there is a general apathy to the real issue and they dont give a hoot to address it. It appears that they are desperate to continue the society in its present form and shudder at the thaught of any reform in the society .They want to take refuge behind the stray incidents where a woman exploited their man and fight against real cause. I think we women have to blame ourselves too because we are after all the mother or a sister or a wife of these men. What’s really frustrating is that all these men who are educated and all but there mindset have not changed, have they?

    @Swati
    Most of the time you are very funny and I like your comments. I have three generations of people in my family which includes aunts, cousins and neices who are wives of Army men and I have seen there hardships in running there households and bringing up there kids and having there husbands at front. I will be happy to know that you dont paint everyone with the same brush.

  96. @Yourfan: Thanks for replying to this lady. While this lady is obviously someone who has crossed the limits of civilized discourse and thus deserves no time or attention, it is indeed interesting to see how several others fail to see the simple logic you lay out in these lines:

    I am sorry to say that this new law does not take into consideration the concept of equality (which the feminist right fully demand all the time) but has been wrongly implemented and thus muddle the real issue of domestic violence irrespective of the gender involved. And I also don’t buy the logic of ‘pay back time’. Pay back whom? If one can, then pay back the perpetrator not perpetrator’s gender.

    However you can say that and noone will say that this observation of yours is “geared to male readers”. Because you are a woman. Alas I cannot without being accused of a lot of things. Which brings us back to ” the concept of equality”.

    @Suzi: If I really wanted to appeal to male readers, I would have put up pictures of Katrina Kaif. I dont think I need to explain any more…nor resort to pointing out , as you have done, the supposed correlation between opinion and “level of education”.

  97. YOURFAN writes:
    @All : I am a woman, who can humbly call herself no less educated than most of the readers of these blog. I have faced a real trauma first hand, learnt the lesson, learnt to be more tolerant, learnt to see other people’s view with compassion only because I was forced to go through a personal tragedy which I definitely don’t want to elaborate and would like to make it a past.Yet I am writing again. Why? I don’t want my worst enemy to go through the trauma that we had to go through. For that reason I want to make sure that I try my best to let others know(no matter whether they are willing to listen to me or not – at least I should be clear in my mind that I tried) that there is no color, no gender, no division whatsoever as far as domestic violence is concerned. It is a disease which happens all over the world irrespective of socio economic conditions, irrespective of gender (I have personally witnessed men being abused by their wives), irrespective of education level.

    @Suzi ,@Nisha: I have no idea why you feel that all the male readers of this post have any less compassion than the female readers. I honestly didn’t feel that way.I also don’t think (at least from their comments as I don’t know any of them personally so can’t vouch whether they practice what they say) that all the male readers who have commented have lack of knowledge about the real issues of domestic violence and its impact. By polarizing (both of you did), by name calling and making personal attack (not by any of you but by Sue) we are making already difficult and volatile issues more muddled up. That is the reason GB writes about my observation (regarding domestic violence taking place irrespective of gender): “However you can say that and no one will say that this observation of yours is “geared to male readers”. Because you are a woman. Alas I cannot without being accused of a lot of things.” The polarization, the false accusation is sad indeed.

    All of us as human beings and not as any separate gender should fight against domestic violence and should stand up for the concept of equality, which by definition rules out any special privileges, any special parameters for ANYBODY.

  98. At the end we have to wait and watch , when this “Legal Terrorism” in India stopped and in that process how many Indian child have to live thier life under Part time Fathers.

  99. @GB,
    Your comment :
    “No Sue, what you are writing is hate speech directed at me—verbal abuse that is. I can reply in kind but then that would be an offense under your “fair act” wont it? ”

    As a Man , if you reply – it is crime under Verbal abuse, as well as if you do not reply and keep mum .. that also crime under mental crulity as per act.

    But if the same done by any women .. the same is not crime at all , it is Nobel work . As Per act the is Protection.

    Great Indian LAW.

  100. Under this DV Act and 498a terrarium destroying, indian joint family or matrimonial house, one women false case harassing so many women and children, pregnant
    women, grand ma & grand papa. Finally the women who filed a case her self is not happy. Finally she loosed her matrimonial house, even if she wants to come back. There is no chance of reconstruction of house. In any respect I
    not find a healthy to the society or a women.
    Most of women are not aware of the consequences of this case also they not aware that she will be losted her matrimonial house (her loved husband and
    father for her child).

    Way we need such law which are not benefit for society or for women. It only leading a cruelty against in-law or children. This law is to encores cruelty
    to the society. Please don’t destroy young men & women in this law. There are so many ways to protect women.

    It is really un predictable that men marriage could lead to a Jail along with his family member including elderly parents and children’s. if u feel that domestic disputes are a domestic violence, than way not political
    disputes are not a political violence, way not parliament disputes are not parliament violence.

    Kindly stop this immediately 498a violence against indian family. STOP violence against MEN or women. Give them peace. “SAVE INDIAN FAMILY”

    With regards
    Dsrao

  101. @GB & Yourfan
    Let me first make one thing clear that Iam no MAN hater and also let me tell you that Iam leading a perfectly happy married life and before I forget, let me tell you Iam no childless either. Yes Iam blessed with everything for a perfectly normal family. Iam writing this because some of the commentators may think Iam either of them to voice my opinion the present way. Yourfan, didn’t you find SS’s comment about certain women being being childless disgusting? My angst is nobody in this post are trying to acknowledge that there is an unproportionate violence towards women and this law, may not be in its present form but with some changes may help those helpless women.I would rather say that VB’s comment made more sense to me and the only male reader who has the guts to acknowledged this truth.
    Iam not a lawyer by profession, neither did any of my family members had to go through this turmoil and thank GOD for that so I had no prior knowledge about 498A etc, and I bet the vast majority of the women (and by that I mean urban educated middle class) have no knowledge about these laws unless situations calls for it. Women do not read 498a and then bond into matrimony neither do women ( and by that I mean majority) bond into matrimony with a vindictive motive. Most of the women take law as their last resort when they feel that their life in endangered. Comments of IH and many others are equally disgusting. Is this the kind of trust you have on your mother, sister and wife? Why is everyone thinking that with little empowerment the whole society is going to fall apart. That brings back GB, the reservation issue and the Gender issue as you have mentioned earlier both are equally unjustified.
    There is an enormous differece between the new reservation law and the new DV law. Reservation, as we have seen is used by people for generations, each and every person who comes under the reserved category will use it leaving no opportunity behind. I don’t know when 498a came into existence but do you think as soon as this law was made each and every household in India went berseck? Please answer me this.

    DV in all its form is bad but where a man has to face taunting or may be to some extent physical violence a women would be beaten to or burnt to death. Mere taunting and some physical violence does not succumb a women to suicide. I believe Women are much stronger and happiness of her family stands foremost. If few of you think Iam polarizing the society, so be it because this is the truth and I won’t be ashamed if Iam branded as a feminist for that.

    @ Women’s point of view
    Our society (both the genders)cries buckets for a onion cutting, mops and duster in hand man but would you have felt same empathy for you mil if she was doing the same? I bet your answer is NO, because it would then have not occured to you that some injustice is being done. Whether its a working women or not she has to take care of her family, right? She cannot compromise on her family. Yeah! she is the one who chose to be a career women. Yes, that is why I say that the mind set has to change.

  102. Dear GB,

    I also know a few ladies whose menfolk serve in the defence forces and sad to say, they lead a very humdrum life at the best of times. During our standoffs and skirmishes with our neighbour, you can see them age a decade in a week.

    But HATS OFF to our undesperate sisters. They have truly learnt the art of multitasking.

    In Kipling’s days these kind of ladies were called grass widows (Plain Tales from the Hills). His cynical explanation was that ‘they caught fire rather easily’.

    As for domestic violence, if the victim is a woman, she gets our politically correct sympathy.
    If the hapless victim is a man, he is treated to amused contempt— the stupid namby-pamby of a fool can’t keep his wife in check!

    No wonder the menfolk are ANGRY.

    By the way, Socrates was also a very very henpecked husband wedded to one Xantippe.

    So the vaunted Greek/European school of philosophy really owes its existance to Mrs Socrates.

    UP WITH WOMAN/WIFE POWER!
    (Women philosophers are rather rara avis)

  103. Dear Suzi,
    you are being disloyal to the Sisterhood.

    Please don’t use terms like ‘painting with the same brush’

    It is just that some of us do manage to have a fair amount of ‘fun’.

    As I said, it leaves the rest of us spellbound in admiration (never jealousy, surely)!

    Dear GB,
    you like/admire/adore/infatuated with Katrina Kaif?

    I like the Chola Parvati.

  104. @swati
    I have nothing to hold agaist you as you specifically said it is some of us, that clears up everything although in my real life I still have to come across those some.And yes Sushmita Sen is way better if a women has to take on some men. KF, nothing against her, she is way good looking but someday we might have to see her with a black eye and yes she won’t be taking help of DV law because thats what most of the women try to do, mask their hubby’s or BF rage thinking its a shame to expose their loved ones until they find themselves black and blue that they cannot even recognize themselves.

  105. Bas karo everyone! We’re going on saying the same thing over and over and over. I haven’t read a single new point in the past dozen comments.

    If you want to fill up the memory space in this blog, we invite you to the noble task of beating the world record with the Himesh thread. Amazing Himeshbhai,/ How swit thy sound/ That saved a wretch like me!

  106. @ GB and your dear comentator , this may not be new for you all, because this is truth.
    —-

    Used False stastics by U.N.Population Fund , that 70% Indian women beaten by Husbands.

    http://washingtontimes.com/corrections/20061128-102228-2806r.htm
    Correction
    November 29, 2006

    Using a chart published in a 2005 U.N. Population Fund report — which the U.N. agency now says was misleading — a London Daily Telegraph article published in Nov. 13 editions of The Washington Times incorrectly stated the frequency of wife abuse in India. The agency says that it does not have sufficient data to provide such a figure and that the chart was intended to show that 70 percent of Indian women who were abused by their husbands think such abuse is justified in at least some circumstances.

  107. @Yourfan, my point was only about the fact that you write about domestic violence from the standpoint of someone who has experienced it, and therefore your voice carries much more empathy than GB’s – who, having possibly (?) no experience of it, treats the subject more clinically and dispassionately.

    Being clinical and dispassionate about these things is difficult – one may as well be clinical about child pornography or child exploitation.

    But of course, GB has to reduce it to the fact that I find you more convincing because you’re a WOMAN, and not because of the clarity of what you have said – Equality, indeed!

  108. A supreme court judge’s take on Domestic Violence Act.
    The headline says ‘The new law on domestic violence needs to be protected from potential saboteurs ‘ , the potential saboteaurs being people protesting the unfairness of the law..
    Intimate relations
    http://www.indianexpress.com/story/17833.html
    ——
    It shows the importance of involving stakeholders in the making of laws. (wonder if males were involved as well????)
    —————————
    Generally, if a case has been filed in any court, a person is barred from seeking any other judicial forum. A little noticed but remarkable feature of the DVA is that regardless of other pending proceedings, it allows you to seek relief under it, …..
    (i think DVA is the first law of its kind. )

  109. Rajeev,

    Please read this also.
    More at :‘Domestic Violence Act bound to be misused’- Reported By The Statesman News paper.

    http://www.thestatesman.net/page.news.php?clid=4&theme=&usrsess=1 &id=138729
    Quote:
    Q: Why not talk about your issue with the new act on domestic violence?
    Pandurang: One of the immediate issues relates to Section 19 (b). Under this, the magistrate may direct the respondent to remove himself from the shared household. Now this is something which I feel is most unfair to the men. According to me, not even murderers or terrorists are directed to do so. It is basically the denial of residential rights to the man without any hearing.
    Similarly, another section says that the magistrate may require a bond with or without sureties for preventing the commission of domestic violence. Kindly tell me, if the whole family of a husband gets accused, who will give the sureties? Isn’t it absurd?
    Likewise, another section speaks of the woman’s right to file a complaint under Section 498 (a) of the IPC.

  110. As a Volunteer and Moderator of SIF ( Save Indian Family ) , every day I used to habituated to hear the Same Cry , Pain , Frustration of thousands Age Old parents , Pregent Sister , handicapped Husbands , when this “ Legal Terrorism “ in India will Stop??

    Recently though the Supreme Court of India Cautioned to take the necessary precaution and seal the hope hole in 498A and anti-dowry LAW to stop such “ Legal terrorism” , our LAW maker does not brother to respect the same , where as they are ready with another tools in the Name of Domestic Violence Act instead of a Domestic harmony Act , where a Husband and there all family members will be thrown out of House in the name of so called Verbal abuse , mental harassment , economical abuse and adulterate relationship ( no need any evidence , only her or her family members own statement is sufficient ) , where as for the same offence from the wife and their family members side , forget any punishment , there is no provision of a small warning for them , they have given them a whole sale free license for “Verbal abuse , mental harassment , economical abuse and adulterate relationship .”

    Check this article:-

    If any LAW maker does not have the sufficient knowledge , then why they make such a stupid LAW ??
    http://www.indiatalking.com/blog/swarup/1326/

    Indian Parents and Pregent Sister are in Jail !!!

    Now the question is are we ready to avoid a Terrorist attack in the form of 498A or DV Act??

    Last one year my experience is a Big “No”.

  111. Some figures on doemstic violence from hindu.

    http://www.hindu.com/thehindu/holnus/001200612100310.htm?headline=Rise~in~domestic~violence
    In 2000, an average of 125 women faced domestic violence every day and after five years, the figure is 160.

    West Bengal recorded the second highest incidence of domestic violence after Andhra Pradesh and accounted for the fourth highest dowry deaths after Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Madhya Pradesh, an NGO ‘Swayam’ said at a seminar on ‘Domestic Violence’ here citing an NCRB report.

    The NGO said that 19 women were murdered by either their husbands and family members, while 160 cases of domestic violence were reported last year. “That is, 58,319 women per year were abused in their own homes.”

    ——————–

  112. Rajiv,

    In a big state like West Bengal only 125 or 160 females are facing Domestic Violence? Thanks to that screwed up NGO and its fucked up research. We masculists will give abetter figure that these idiots.

    NCRB also says, 44.7% of all suicides are by married males where as only 25% are by married women. This proves that married males are about 2 times worse off than married females.

    Feminists want to double suicide rate of men in another few years.

    By the way, that number 58,319 is the number of 498a cases filed in year 2005. The conviction rate is 2% and 80% of these cases are false.

    Only idiots can claim false cases as part of statistics. Please take the conviction rate and not the number of cases filed.

    Indian love to get brainwashed by media and Italians.

  113. Custody is granted by the courts or supposed to be atleast after evaluation . I do not know of Falvia Agnes story whether her story is true or not but I do think that she is divorcee and has in her minds had a bad experince . But denying of custody can be done by courts. Only a presumtive custody is taken and then the other party has the right to challenge it . I am not sure how you can claim that as an abuse . In such a case I guess almost every man is abused by that yardstick because rarely do they get custody

    Now Are we saying that men should never keep custody of the child. Have we gone to the standards that maybe men should not inviolve in household work.

    Has the 21st century women suddenly decided that she does not want to work and provide for herself and children. Men have done it for centuries . How come we ask some man to provide for who is essentially doctor etc.

    Providin gis mean to be adependents not every one

  114. Supreme Court India finds fault with Domestic Violence Act.
    More at :
    http://www.indiatalking.com/blog/swarup/4631/
    So the Question still Unanswered, are our LAW Maker ready to accept their Mistake and take corrective action immediately or will be busy to save the Terrorist life , who had been Punished By Supreme court Hang to death ?

    Wonder our age old Parents live is more important or the life of a Hard Core Terrorist are more Important for our LAW Makers.

  115. Supreme Court India finds fault with Domestic Violence Act.

    So the Question still Unanswered, are our LAW Maker ready to accept their Mistake and take corrective action immediately or will be busy to save the Terrorist life , who had been Punished By Supreme court Hang to death ?

    Wonder our age old Parents live is more important or the life of a Hard Core Terrorist are more Important for our LAW Makers.

  116. Before I get into this, I have to make a few confessions to put my comment into context.

    1) I am female.

    2) While I am of indian descent, my family moved to canada while I was five. Hence, I am not actually affected by this law.

    3)I grew up in somewhat of a liberal household. When we immigrated here, it was from Delhi rather than a smaller locale where values may have been more traditional and thus I am caught in less of a time-warp than many other indian families in my neighbourhood. So I realize that my way of looking at things is somewhat unique to the general NRI-ish point of view.

    Okay, now that those are out of the way…

    I agree. with quite a bit of what you’ve said. While I think that bit on sexual relations could have been written a whole lot clearer, you did clear it up in your subsequent replies to people so I’m satisfied.

    Honestly, this is the kind of thing that makes me a bit uncomfortable. Growing up with my mother, a woman whose job entails dealing with different kinds of discrimination every day, I’ve grown up with fact planted clearly in my head that yes, majorities can be discriminated against. I’m part of a few sites on the web where I have discussed issues of a gender nature before and I’m always spoken against when I express my disagreement with things like this, so I understand your hesitency to speak out on this issue.

    Even though I don’t really have anything of value to add to your post, I just wanted to put it out there that I do agree with you that this bill is extremely sexist and I feel that there are probably a lot of cases in which it will be used as blackmail or will be used unjustly against perfectly innocent people.

    Yes, equality is an issue. Yes, domestic violence is an issue. But this is not the way to solve either one.

    I think this post has been dragged through the ashes a bit. Even I, super reader and interested party extraordinaire got tired of reading all the comments, I’m sad to say. I only scanned some parts so I’m going to refrain from replying to individuals at this point.

    I have a memory of a year or two ago when I went over the border to pick up an uncle from the airport and happened to tune in to a radio station that was a “by men, for men” type. I remember it because at the time they were talking about domestic violence and bringing up some points I hadn’t heard brought up before. Something a lot of people have mentioned is that women suffer in a violent situation because they would lose respect if they spoke out. However, this is often doubly true for men.

    Picture this. The police are called by a neighbour who heard fighting or something or the other next door. When they arrive, they find a husband and wife. One of them is sporting a black eye. was there domestic violence?

    Taking out the assumption that there probably was if the hurt party was the wife, let’s concentrate on what they say. The police officer asks, “Did your husband punch you?” Most likely scenario? The woman will start crying and will play it up.

    (At this point i fully expect to be attacked for portraying women as manipulative bitches)

    Let’s reverse that scenario. The police Officer asks, “Did your wife punch you?” What does the husband say? Now think about it. Place the various men you know in this situation. What does he say? Odds are, he tells the policeman he fell down the stairs or some other story.

    Is this a theory? Yeah. is it plausible? People will have to decide that for themselves.

    On a completely different but related note, I stumbled on Joss Whedon’s (he writes and creates tv shows and the like for those who have no idea who I’m talking about. I’m a big fan of “Buffy the Vampire slayer. Yes, you may laugh. Many do. Poor Me.) speech at the Equality Now event in May. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cYaczoJMRhs Quite amusing most of it but I have to say he struck a note near the end about where he talks about interview number 50 (you’ll get the reference if you watch it) and really climaxes at “Equality is not a concept.”

    I’m sure there are other things I wanted to say but I don’t really remember them at 5 in the morning when I was supposed to be writing an essay on anti-branding and ended up reading this instead.

    Hope this makes some sort of sense

    Divya

  117. Pingback: Soma to florida.

  118. If the Domestic VOilence Act is taken at face value then there are two very dangerous things that can happen from prevelant Indian society point of view :
    1) All Indian men can be put behind the bars coz even if a man shouts at any lady in the house for anything wrong she is doing, then it is sufficeint ground for the lady to go and complaint against this at the nearest police station.
    2) When we are talking of gender equality, this law is squarely the opposite.
    3) the act has been made for 100% misuse by the greedy indian women. this law is a boon to the greedy indian women,and this fact which the Act has been totaly ignored by the Act.
    4) the act does not in any way suggest the penalties to be imposed on women misusing this act.
    5) Indian mens have started realising that it is better to live singly than marry or live-in ..Very soon, ” marriages” and The instituion of “family” will soon vanish and come to an end if this Act is not repealed or amended to make it gender-neutral.
    It is a mean Act meant to destroy the very foundation of the family life. especially in the Indian context. It encourages divorces etc.

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