Sexual Harassment in the Indian Tomb of Silence, #MeToo

India is a patriarchal society. Which simply means the head of the family is a male. However, there are two exemptions which are Meghalaya in the northeast and Kerela in down south which does not follow the patriarchal norms.Before independence, they were matriarchal in nature but with times their nature of matriarchy has diluted. Many factors like globalization, migration, and religion have played important role in changing its earlier form. The world is always going through changes.So discussing another change affecting the femme world is the #MeToo factor which primarily highlights sexual harassment.The feminist movement is taking a different turn now.Since October 2017, the world has seen an eruption of charges of sexual nature against many Hollywood celebrities. It’s been a while the MeToo has gained momentum and is still going strong and steady. People from different professions are narrating their stories sexual harassment. Media houses are publishing many write-ups of sports celebrities to Hollywood actors of different nationalities who have gone through any sexual harassment.

However if we discuss India and its treatment to the fairer sex, its still in a very crippled condition.But if we compare the state of Indian women amongst all, relatively the Northeast women and Malayali women are fairly better from rest of the country.They are far much better in all, fields of education, health, finance and decision making. The gender crimes or gendercide have been plaguing our country and the whole world. Women in oneness are now voicing their horrors through social media which got reignited by actress Alyssa Milano from Hollywood in the name of MeToo. Sexual harassment will not be pushed under the blanket rather will come out in the open 

The MeToo posts that have been flooding social media since October 2017, when the actress Alyssa Milano suggested, on Twitter, that anyone who has been a victim of sexual harassment or assaulted use them so that the enormity of this issue might be conveyed. Alyssa Milano has been one of Harvey Weinstein’s most vocal critics and approached women to utilize MeToo to recount their stories of sexual harassment. However, this movement was initiated a decade back before the Harvey Weinstein scandal took off.

Over 10 years prior, Tarana Burke was the person who recognized the energy of the expression “Me too” as one that could help women. She established the MeToo movement in 2006 in light of the fact that she, was somebody who experienced sexual harassment, needed to aid ladies and young girls —who had bravely survived the sexual attack. Ms. Burke created Just Be Inc., a nonprofit organization that supports victims of sexual harassment and assault.  She hunted out the material that she had not found readily available to her 10 years before and committed herself to being there for people who had been abused. And she named her movement as MeToo.

Now very recently this movement has gained an enormous momentum due to the hashtag campaign initiated by Hollywood actress Alyssa Milano.

These  MeToo posts are turning into a digital movement unifying the women who have faced any kind of sexual harassment at work or home. Almost 68,000 individuals have so far answered to Milano’s tweet, #MeToo has been utilized more than 1m times in the US, Europe, and the Middle East and far. The French used #balancetonporc, the Spanish #YoTambien, and in Arab nations the hashtags وأنا_كمان# and ‏وانا_ايضا# were overwhelming. Facebook said that within 24 hours, 4.7 million people around the world engaged in the #metoo conversation, with over 12m posts, comments, and reactions. This movement is part of a string of hashtags and methods used by women to highlight sexual crimes and sexual harassment faced by them at home and work. The Weinstein revelations also came on the anniversary of the leaked 2005 Access Hollywood tape, in which Donald Trump bragged about kissing and touching women because “when you’re a star, they let you do it”. At that time, the writer Kelly Oxford said she received millions of Twitter interactions when she encouraged women to share their own experiences using the #NotOkay.

MeToo isn’t about sexual abuse or sexual harassment in the glamour world or the regular world. It’s about the game of power. In a patriarchal world where the head is a male, everything lies in his area of control. Be it the public or the private space of women. This MeToo has become synonymous with the sexual plight in the form of sexual harassment of women irrespective of any nation she belongs too. The coming up of their personal stories is just an attitude problem of how women are asked to hush. Keep it quiet. Learn to adjust.

Another recent sexual scoop is of  Writer and director James Toback, who had achieved an Oscar nomination for his composition of `Bugsy,’ has been accused of sexual harassment by 38 women in a report in The Los An’ hed on Sunday in The L ‘geles Times. In the document, many of the women accuse that Toback approached them on the streets of New York City and promised success to their careers and stardom. This is quite a usual behavior in the world of glitz and glamour.His appointments would often end with sexual questions and performed masturbation in front of them or simulate sexual intercourse with them, according to the victims which are all different hues of the same crime i.e sexual harassment. So all ladies shout out loud MeToo.

Both the glamour industries as Hollywood and Bollywood are able to keep things wrapped up. It’s surely a collective art shared by those professionals, wherein all choose to remain blind and dumb to the powerful. Many sexual predators are kept under the carpet.  Since times immemorial in different cultures women have been seen as a sexual object. After decades of movement, awareness, education, and still, the plight of women remains the same. It is just unfortunate that women go through multiple times the ordeal and challenges in her choice of profession.

Its November and the list of sexual accusations and apologies have just inflated since October. Thanks to the #MeToo posts, few of the powerful sexual offenders are:

Kevin Spacey  (actor)   George H.W. Bush (Ex-U.S  President)  Roy Price (Amazon studio)
Ben Affleck     (actor)    Chris Savino  (T.V) Michael Oreskes (top editor)
James Toback  (screenwriter and director) John Besh (celebrity chef) Lockhart Steele  ( editorial director for Vox Media)

So far in  Bollywood, only two actresses; Priyanka Chopra and Richa Chadha have formally accepted the role of the Have’s Club about the many Harvey Weinstein existing in the industry.

INDIAN FABRIC

According to the census report, 70% of Indians live in the rural zones, which clearly show our basic human development index is far behind than rest of the nations worldwide. So a lot needs to be done to raise a girl child and then provide her safety at her workspace.

Religion, traditions, age-old practices, and so forth have put Indian women in a subservient and exploitable position in numerous areas of life. Low scale of participation in school, the absence of monetary autonomy, taboos and biases working against them, and so on, have brought the females being reliant and dependent on men and different clubs of authority like the family, neighborhood and the general community. They are typically uninformed of their rights and regardless of the possibility that they are not; they don’t have simple access to liberty, equality, and fraternity.

“Eve teasing” is used in India to refer to a wide variety of behavior including molestation, “flashing” or any verbal/physical sexual harassment that falls short of rape. It’s an ancient term. The “Eve” part comes from the Old Testament of the Holy Bible and describing harassment as “teasing” makes it sound almost like a mild romantic overture that should be tolerated – which of course it should not.

The issues identified with women are being brought and examined up in different forums, in the late circumstances. Of these, ‘savagery against women’ is increasing in the world over. In any case, notwithstanding the establishment of laws, detailing of reformative legitimate procedures, the arrangement of lawful guide to the destitute, broad utilization of the arrangement of Public Interest Litigation, access of Family Courts and so on. Women in India have far to go in concretizing their Sacred Goals of safety and equality into reality.

Watchdogs as Crime patrol or Saavdhan India are some programmes which are just flooded with all types of gender crimes across India. It’s a wake up call for us citizens as to how the Indian women are treated across metropolis, rural areas, from north to south and east to west regions of the country.

Below is a list of Indian professionals accused of sexual crimes

Tarun Tejpal rape case: In November a year ago, a female writer who worked with the presumed news association Tehelka blamed the association’s organizer supervisor in-boss Tarun Tejpal with rape. The writer affirmed that she was sexually attacked by Tejpal inside a lift of a 5-star inn in Goa amid the Think Festival sorted out by Tehelka.

Sexual Predator - Man in power , Sexual Harassment

KPS Gill: Senior IAS officer Rupan Deol Bajaj accused in 1988 that previous Punjab executive general of police, KPS Gill, touched her inappropriately at a gathering.

Phaneesh Murthy: One of India’s best-known programming officials was asked to leave from Infosys in 2002 after his secretary Reka Maximovitch blamed him for sexual misconduct

Sexual Predator - Man in power , Sexual Harassment

Asok Kumar Ganguly: The previous Supreme Court judge ventured down as head of the West Bengal human rights commission in 2014 after a law intern blamed him for sexually harassing her at a hotel room.

Bikram Choudhury– founder of Bikram yoga the yoga guru has confronted various rape claims and claims. Furthermore, now, lawyers say, Choudhury is on the run, avoiding court hearings and a legitimate judgment.

Sexual Predator - Man in power , Sexual HarassmentPolice have arrested two persons, including the son of Haryana Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief, for allegedly stalking a senior IAS officer’s daughter. Vikas Barala, the 23-year-old son of BJP’s Subhash Barala, and his friend Ashish Kumar, 27, were arrested from the Housing Board light point late on Friday night. They were later released on bail.

A short List of godman accused of sexual misconduct

  • Asaram Bapu
  • Swami Nithyananda
  • Gurmeet Ram Rahim
  • Ganga Shashwatapada Swamy
  • Narayan Sai

We recommend few corrective measures:

1.       Change in the view of society towards the woman treatment since risk to male domination is the fundamental cause of abusive behavior at work or  home  

2.      Awareness about sexual orientation. Non-Government Organizations and government offices, for example, National Commission for women may assume a critical part in sharpening the general public about sexual orientation rights.  

3.      Imparting legitimate instruction to the young girls at secondary school or auxiliary school level, empowering them to battle for their rights.  

4.      Educating the ladies about their rights and additionally the office to have a gender cell if there should be an occurrence of a specific issue, remembering the present instructive status of the greater part of Indian women.

5.      The motivation of women from poor and in BPL families (Below poverty line) to use the plans/ programmes began by the administration for their welfare. 

6.      Strict execution of the lawful arrangements of the enactment, which are implied for the security of females.

7.      Developing projects to make the women conscientiously bold or engaged on the grounds that, presenting legal rights or making women proficient alone can never end the viciousness against them.  

8.      Setting up Family Counseling Centers and guaranteeing their legitimate working with the target to fortify the families and not breaking them separated. They have to spread the idea – “family is the prime unit of society” and give a stage where men, women, old and youthful can share their issues and get great Journal of International Women’s Studies Vol. 6 #1 November 2004 119 directing. At introduce 500 willful associations are running Family Counseling Centers everywhere throughout the nation with help from the Central Social Welfare Board. (Sinha 2002)  

9.      The electronic and the print media have officially influenced a gouge by drawing out the monstrosities towards females in the open however they to need to stretch more.  

10.   Justice needs to be provided fast cos justice delayed is justice denied. 

Looking forward to hearing your valuable comments.

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