Very many ugly things have been going on in our country. The latest one is the issue of Kashmir and its women. I am writing to Spark regarding one of the things that enraged me the most…
The statements made by multiple people, one of them being MLA Vikram Saini from Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar district, were outrageous. The MLA was heard saying, “The BJP workers are very excited and those who are bachelors, they can get married to fair Kashmiri women”. In another incident, Haryana BJP Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar shared a similar thought. He said, “Anyone, young and old alike, can understand how this [poor sex ratio] would create a problem in the future. So our minister Dhankharji said we will have to bring girls from Bihar. Now some people are saying Kashmir has been opened, we can bring girls from Kashmir also. Jokes aside, if [sex] ratio is fine, then there would be balance in the society.”
Both the statements show a problem that is deep rooted in our society. Women are looked upon as objects and not as human beings. The issue of sex ratio again has its roots in the objectification of women from birth. They are seen as a burden and killed off at birth or before that, once the parents come to know of the gender. Even the issue of sex ratio is seen as a problem because men do not get brides to marry and not because girls are killed. In reality these brides are again seen as objects to be possessed but the supply of these objects is less than the demand.
If we delve a bit deep into this issue of looking women as object of use, we find it is leading to issues like rape culture being normalised and culture of abuses which demean women.
Women of Kashmir have been victim of organised rapes for decades. In Kashmir and many other parts of the country women are raped because they are seen as property and raping them is seen as taking possession of that property. On one hand, women are compared to goddesses and on the other they are treated as objects to possess and abuse. . The statements mentioned above are the result of this attitude only -treating women as objects to possess just like land to be possessed.
This attitude is a huge problem and it is being promoted by people in power and accepted as normal behaviour by many. We must challenge this head on and not accept any treatment that objectifies women in our daily lives . People who make such statements and especially those in power should be held accountable for such heinous outlook and must be condemned. I am enraged and as a reader of Spark I am expressing my anger and thoughts to both Spark and its readers.