Posted by Agnivo Niyogi
[I had a blog Aagan Says previously. But in a moment of emotional foolery i deleted the blog without taking backup, and posts between May-August were lost. I am going to REPOST those again. Today i post an article i had written in response to the debate on Slutwalk in Delhi].
However shocking the headline of this post may seem to you, several Indian males (and I daresay, women too) feel this way. Girls bring upon them the ignominy of rape. Men are only driven to the extent of humiliating members of the fairer sex, because girls challenge their manhood by flashing provocative outfits.
Reads like rants of a man smitten by mad cow disease? Welcome to India. Here girls are forbidden to be out of the house at night by themselves, lest they return home with a pregnancy! Here even Burqa clad women would be blamed for their dress if lecherous eyes devour them, here travelling in public transport is like a battle call to “safeguard honour”. Even the safe confines of the bedroom might earn women the “love” of their husband, even when they are least demanding it. But being a woman in India is being an epitome of struggle, and all misdemeanors have to be bourne with a smile and carry on with life like nothing happened.
For how long?
The recent clamour against Slut Walk just conforms to the misogynist mindset the society has. From the tea stall owner to elite intellectuals on social media, everyone unequivocally agreed slut walk perpetuated the problem instead of offering a cure. While majority reflect the view dressing like sluts only attracts (and accentuates) male libido, another class of people view it as a deflection of the main issue – violence against women. And another few regard slut walk as an “elite time pass”, a form of militant feminism.
Started as a protest after a remark by a police officer in Canada, Slut walk has slowly become the Pride Walk for women. It has brought in a change in societal perceptions of women and helped women assert themselves in a rapidly shrinking space in the society. “Sluts” have rights too. A dress can never be the pretext to hurt the freedom of choice. The problem lies not with the provocative dress but with the mind that gets provocated. Slutwalk simply sends out the message.
Slutwalk, in short is the demand for the right to be a woman.
P.S. You might also be interested in reading – Being Woman in India