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Tuesday, January 22, 2013


To read the Article click Here.

ऐ साहब,
रात भर मुझ में से
आने वाली
तुम्हारी गंध से
मैं जागी रही
तुम्हारे शब्दों की
गूँज से
स्तब्ध, निशब्द हो
हर आने वाली सुबह से
मैं घबराती रही...
तुम्हारे महल के पीछे ही
मेरी एक छोटी झोंपड़ी है
अधबनी, भिंची हुई
ग्रीष्मकाल में वो जल उठती है
वर्षा में पिघली सी
और शीत में ठिठुरन वाली
तुम्हारे कुटुंब की शोभा को
अकस्मात् विकृत करने वाली...
और मैं,
हर दिन तुम्हारे महल
की धूल से
दो मुट्ठी गेंहू कमाकर
घर में उसे पका कर
अपने पाँच हिस्सों को खिलाने वाली
मेरा पति
जो रोज़ बाहर पिसता है
 कुछ चाबुक की आवाजें
कमाने और गवाने
की मदहोशी में
मुझे सुनाने वाला...
कल मेरी इस देह पर
छिपे हुए हर रात के
चाबुक के शोर को
तुमने अपने महल की
चार दीवारी में उधेड़
मेरी बेबस चीखों से
कर मुठभेड़
मेरे उठे हुए सम्मान को
अपने पुरूषोचित बल से
रौंद डाला
आज मैं यहाँ
एक अँधेरे में
छीने गए सम्मान
से आहत हो
सोच रही हूँ
क्यों मेरा जीना इतना महंगा है
और यह जीवन इतना अल्पमूल्य...

Monday, January 21, 2013

Something Against Rape & Abuse...

Some time ago I was talking to Shine about the differences in the lives of girls and boys, in general. We talked about many things like We don’t hear much about the incidences of a girl abusing a guy or a guy kidnapped and gang-raped by few pervert girls! Why females seem to have more control over their senses? Even in cases of child abuse we hear the news more about male being culprits. Though, there are cases where some male-children have been sexually abused by women, but comparatively they are rare. Just because women are physically weaker, they are considered as an object by many. Even after marriage the things and rituals are imposed on women in the name of culture and tradition while their male counterparts continue to live the way they were living before.  Eg. Ghoonghat, Compulsion Sarees, Karva-Chauth etc. There are infinite.
Few years back I remember I read about a tribal woman who died soon after giving birth to a baby. Reason: she hadn’t eaten anything for last 3 days prior to her delivery. Further it was found out that in her last expectancy, she had a miscarriage. When she went for the treatment she was referred from one hospital to another as she had no money. She wandered around carrying a dead embryo in her womb for 3 days.
 That time one more incidence happened at the railway station( I don’t remember the place) where an expecting woman gave birth to a child at the station. Men there stood around her watching the Delivery Tamasha.Is this the society and culture we women are entitled to?
Why the hormones of menare not in control and those of women are in control? Why the male species of humans are governed mostly by Id? There are other means of satisfying urges, why do the sick minds spoil lives of girl child or a normal lady going home from her work?
And how would the world be if it was the other way round. If women were ogling at men, checking out their behinds, and passing lewd comments or bestowing so called appreciations, eulogies starting with “sexy”. Or some cheap lady riding a bicycle, bidi dangling from her tobacco stained lips, asking an unwary passer by “chalta kya?” (translated: "coming with me?"). If there were some reserved seats in buses and trains for men- Males trying to maintain a safe distance from women with a fear that some of them could vulgarly slide their hands over them under the crowd cover, or pinch them here and there, or keep falling over them under the pretense of a rough drive, if time was such that left male sanctity at the mercy of females. Police lined up for the security of men around the University campus. Men worrying about stepping outside till late at evening or night. Parents scared of giving births to a male child, ending up aborting them. Women asking for dowry before marrying them. Male foeticide, low male:female ratio and then villages where males were being bought to satisfy the urges of all the women in the family, or the whole village against their will...

Ravana @ red Fort.
So while things could have been other way round but they are not, can we expect some control from the people with excessive testosterone imbalances. 
I was reading an article in 'The Hindu', the popular English daily titles "Where Rape is seen as violence" by Ruchira Gupta, who is a founder of Apne Aap Women Worldwide.
She quoted, "A cruel and bizarre Idea has surfaced since the rape of the 23 year old student in Delhi- that prostitution should be legalized because 'men will be men' and hence if prostitutes will cater to the needs of men, girls from good families will not be raped." She rightly said further: it implies that  poor women should  be sexually available to protect the middle class women.
So while there is majority of sensible men who do not see rape as sex but as violence, there are some in minority who have been born and brought up in such environments where women are treated as an object by their husbands or even by the new females relations- the notorious mother and sister in laws concept is so popular in India at least that they at least must be knowing what I'm talking about. The constant insults and abuses that they themselves might have been victims of once, are lashed upon the new daughter in law. As the role reversal takes place, a monster gets created out of a tamed docile "abla nari" That is a good enough proof of how culture continues to shape psyches.
     In India, where the cases of violence against womenfolk do not seem to be abaiting even after the mass protests for what happened with Damini (name changed), there is an emerging need for male education programs- about wrong and right. I read in one of the protest posters- "If men can't control themselves they should be discouraged to go out not us(women)". Film and TV Media including the commercials could show girls in good positions in society, rising to be an equal, caring for their own parents as well as in-laws and that could encourage the population towards a more balanced sex ratio. Such films should also be carefully designed so that they don't send wrong impressions about 'what women want' in young minds. Her No doesn't mean a Yes.
Many rapes that happen with lower or lower middle class women go unregistered due to the fear of stigmatization. Some fragile voices come up but they are oppressed by the powerful ones.

P.S. I clicked this image at Red Fort. Thought of sharing it on my blog and felt it rightly portrays the beasts I talked about here.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Andamans II

A very happy New year to all of you. Here I continue the story about next three days... To read the previous part click: Andamans I
Fourth Day: Our fourth day was planned at Havelock Island. We reached Havelock at around 2 p.m. checked in- Symphony Palm Resorts. The resorts were beautiful with lush green surroundings. Food was sumptuous as well. After our lunch we went for a stroll at nearby beach.
 White sand, green waters and corals at the beach side were no less than a heavenly view. While walking alongside the beach we saw number of sea shells of abundant hues. After observing them closely, we realized they were walking.
Dead Coral reefs at the beach side
I and my sister posing before beautiful hues during evening -Havelock
Shells sticking to a coral reef in Sea.

Different Shells with their Animals inside. Watch closely!
Another View of the beach during evening.
After spending whole day at the beach side, we decided to wake up early next morning to experience the sun rise.  
Fifth Day: A local told us that sun rises at around 3.30 in the morning and till 5 there was no sign of sun. A few minutes later we discovered the sky was covered with clouds and hence watching the rising sun was not possible. 
Later we went inside water upto half a kilometer or may be more- it was not deep. We saw fishes swimming around the Coral reefs, hiding inside after sensing us.
Me going into the water to discover some fishes swimming around the corals and sea-flora
 After getting ready and munching our breakfast at our Resort we left for Radha Nagar Beach. Radha Nagar beach in Havelock has been termed as the most beautiful beach of Asia by Times.  The water was clear like other places in Andaman- sky merging into the sea making it look like one.  One can swim in the sea and enjoy the waves.
Radha Nagar Beach
Swimming @ Radha Nagar Beach
Sand balls in star patterns- made by crabs at beach side.

We reached back at Port Blair the same day.
Note: One can spend more days at Havelock and enjoy the lovely place. Elephant Beach is famous tourist attraction for water sports like scuba and snorkeling. (Heard from a fellow traveler -it is good)

Sixth Day: Next day we started for Mahatma Gandhi Marine Sanctuary at Jolly Buoy. The sanctuary remains open for only 6 months. For other 6 months another sanctuary opens: Red skin Island. We enjoyed glass boat views (boats having base of magnifying glass) that shows life inside water. One can enjoy Glass boat ride or snorkeling-  any one which is included in ticket and can pay for other.  So I and my sister did some swimming on the lovely beach. Afterwards went for our ‘free’ snorkeling ride. After looking at the marine life my sister got excited . We took rs. 500 package per person to go further into the sea. It was far better experience than scuba at North Bay. We were awestruck looking at the life inside. Andaman is rich in Corals, we saw wide variety of corals viz. Brain coral, finger Corals, Color changing corals- they become white when one touches them and some more. Our guide gave us star fishes- one was red and one was electric blue colored. Touching them and picking them was an experience in itself. Going further we were made to pick the soft Sea-cucumbers. Again after sometime we saw a purple shell going inside the coral. Our guide told us that pearls are found from these shells. Diving inside the sea and touching sticky Sea-Anemones and playing with clown fishes was altogether an enchanting and mesmerizing affair. 
Jolly Buoy- My sister calls it a magical Photograph.
This is a Plastic free zone.
Camouflaged Crab
Flora @ Jolly Buoy
I wish I had a water proof Camera to click some vibrant under water life at Jolly buoy. Anyway I would plan for the place again in years to come- specially Havelock and the marine sanctuary. 

Hope you enjoyed the photographs. I loved Andamans. :)
Hotels Used:
Portblair- Hotel Hill top International
Havelock-Hotel Symphony palm beach resort
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