Idiocy of the
Indian Protection of Women from Domestic Violence
VED from VICTORIA INSTITUTIONS
It is foretold! The torrential flow of inexorable destiny!
9. A code to promote family life
It is quite safe to think that in the ultimate analysis, the drafters of this Act also, would urge for the promotion of the family as a social unit, in its current state, befitting the restrains of the Indian feudal vernaculars.
If that be so, there is a need for some external or internal force to bring in the cohesion in the family. For, individuals are separate entities. There should be some force that makes them join together, procreate, and continue to live as one entity, under a common address. Has the drafters of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act done any such drafting, that does promote the family in the first place, before going ahead with an Act that has a lot of intimidation in its wordings.
Guarding the frontiers: In the absence of a coherent written code that enforces the codes of behaviour inside the family, the husband would at times be provoked to use physical violence, not only against his wife, but also against her father, mother, uncles, aunts, brothers, sisters, cousins and neighbours. For, they may not have fully grasped the idea that there is an intimate zone for every family, into which they all do not have any business to encroach. The wife has no business to be the agent of her father, mother, brothers, sisters, cousins, boss, co-workers and neighbours inside the unit called family, wherein she lives with her husband and children.
The necessary statute: Persons, especially cornered individuals, resort to violence as a last resort, when they find no other support in the form of logic and loyal supporters. Before blaming them, it is the duty of the government to prop up a support for them in the form of a code of behaviour, and conventions inside a family. This shall include the sacramental issue of the family being a separate unit, and the husband being the wife’s man, and the wife being the husband’s woman. Without this statute in place, there is no way there should be other statutes that aim to target one of the entities in the family. The very viewing of the family as a place where the occupants are in mood of mutual fighting, and the outsiders acting as the saviours of the woman, has an element of deceit. The outsiders’ job is not to pull away another man’s wife towards themselves, but to only see that the family unit pulls on.
The threat of intimidation: If there is physical violence, there are already provisions in place to deal with them. There is no need for a separate law that makes the wife so special that she naturally comes to feel that she is a special entity quite superior to the husband. If that be so, her parents and other relatives who feel that they have not been mentally accommodated by the husband will continually seek to seek revenge by plotting to make the wife revolt against her husband. In most cases, the powerful lower indicant words with which they place her will have the effect of commands on the wife. And she will do their biddings, and intimidate her husband with the possibility of a police case, if her husband doesn’t do the biddings of her relatives.
Now, the reader should understand that the writer is not a supporter of any man or husband, but simply stating the fact that a one-sided law has no reason to be passed in this land. There may be good husband, good wives, bad husbands and bad wives. There may also be the issue of both being either good or bad. However, it is not on the basis of there being some bad husbands, that a law affecting all persons should be passed, that will target all husbands, even if they are good, and their wives and her relatives are innately bad.
There is question of whom this Act aims to benefit, and if the target persons do get the benefit, or it reaches into the hands of others who really were not the target persons. That can be discussed at the last.
The plight of the Indian womenfolk: Talking about the plight of the women in this nation, there are many aspects to be considered. One is the fact that the burden of running the household, washing the clothes, cleaning the house, making food, and such other daily chores fall flat on the shoulders of the womenfolk. That is the general experience in this nation, with a few exceptions.
The plight of the Indian men folk: The men folk were supposed to work and bring in the money. However, there have been changes in this set-up. Men folk do not always work, unless they get a work befitting their social status. If they do go in for work below their social status, actually they will do more harm than good to the family in terms of social levels and acceptability in their home social circles. Moreover the family’s social worth will go down, which will affect everyone in the family. A woman going for a slightly lower job may not affect the social value that much. For, it may not be seen as a reflection of the family’s social worth as such.
Women do go for work. And bring in revenue. Yet, still they have to do the major part of the household work including the preparation of food. In many ways, this is connected to upbringing, and it may be difficult to induce men folk to do this work in the family, unless out of duress. If it is a thing that the males are trained in since childhood, it might work. Like I said earlier, a complete change of social understanding. Otherwise to expect the husbands to do this work without any basic training and social convention may be expecting the near impossible. Why this has been so all round the world is not easy to explain or find out. May be there is a specific reason. Whatever it is, the writer of this book has not been able find it out.
The situation in India is definitely worse than in the English nations. Even though in an English household also, the womenfolk do this work, the innate lower level social existence of the majority womenfolk in India does give a distressing plight to their work. It does have some connection to the language codes.
I can’t go into that issue here, for it may be a digression from the main topic.
Before going into the concluding part of the basic discussion of the subject matter, there are one or two more items to be discussed. After that we can move into the finer aspect of the Act itself.
Fidelity and infidelity: First is about the issue of fidelity, and its antonym, infidelity. What is fidelity? It is definitely not concerned with sexual fidelity alone. There is the need to understand that the wife has the duty to share her companionship, and body with her husband. What about sharing her companionship with others, which doesn’t go into the realm of sexual deeds? Well, this sharing should also not be with persons who are competitors of her husband, or with those whom he doesn’t like or with those who have an inimical attitude to him. A woman going with or being in companionship with another person, is a very powerful experience. It is a thing that can enliven a person, fill him with energy, and also make him a leader. No wife is to lend this power to another man, or woman. Unless her husband allows it. As for the husband, he can rightfully feel distressed, agitated and disturbed if his wife doesn’t heed his words and caution. A more candid version of this issue is that even to acknowledge another person who uses the lower indicant degrading words to or about her husband can be an act of infidelity. It is here the actual difference between the understanding of ‘fidelity’ as understood in Indian languages and its meaning in an English social environment stands.
Sexual fidelity in women and men: As to sexual fidelity, it is a thing on which there can be no compromise as far as a woman is concerned. Well, then the natural question of how can a man have a sexual affair with another woman would rise. Well, it is certainly a misdemeanour. However in the case of simple, unattached sexual encounter with another woman, the husband shall derive a powerful leadership. The effect on the household shall not be as much as the wife going in for sexual alliance with another man.
This is a very difficult issue to explain, for it does obviously smack of male chauvinism. However, my intentions are far from that premises. It is basically connected to my observation on codes that run behind reality. I will try to explain it without going into that premises altogether.
In the case of the man having a sex with another woman, he is still in the controller of the situation, as far as the leadership is concerned. However, when the wife submits to another man, she is more or less placing herself under the other man’s level, physically, mentally, socially and also in the Indian vernacular indicant word codes. This last mentioned thing is not there in a similar issue in an English nation.
I am not saying that the husband doing the misdeed is not a sin or not a cheating or that it is condonable. I am only saying that the wife doing it has more negative possibilities, especially in an Indian vernacular social condition.
If at all the wife does like to experience an extramarital sexual experience, it might be done as a joint venture. This is the theme of the current day hot topic of spouse swapping. However, this issue is fraught with unforeseen dangerous, which I have explained in my book on Indian Married Life. Especially in the Indian vernacular settings.
Divorce: Now, we need to go into the issue of divorce.
Divorce is a terrible thing to happen, especially if both the partners are made to go into that location on the basis of provocations created by other persons, including the various relatives of both the persons. However, there are cases when it shall be necessary. Especially, if the marriage continues amid terrible mistrust, and sly manipulations. For, the wife’s side would naturally go in for invoking the provisions of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act.
The lack of safeguards: How can a husband extricate himself from this quandary? Where are the provisions in the law to safeguard his interest? How can the drafters of this draconian law simply ignore his plight and right to justice? Divorce is the best option, against going to the police station and facing questioning by the satanic Indian police personnel.
But then divorce itself is quite difficult.
Draconian rights to the police: It is here that one needs to talk about the right given to the Indian police to arrest the accused husband. Before discussing the actual provisions for questioning and arresting him, let us ponder on the qualification of the police personnel to do this job. Most of them are of the ignorant class, who should never be entrusted with such powers over the citizens of this nation. The majority of them do not have any level of knowledge in English. Which itself make their appointment to this job questionable. Knowing only the vernacular, their full social logic is connected to base, feudal, pejorative vernacular words. A simple questioning by such low-standard policemen is enough to erase away all human dignity from a person, both male as well as female.
A female in Indian police custody: In this context, it may be mentioned that no female from this land should be allowed to be questioned by the Indian police personnel, unless she has proper bureaucratic or political connections. They would quite calmly use low level words for You, She, Her and Hers. This can be a very distressing and mentally agonising incident for the female, unless she is coming from a low social class, whereby she is used to the use of such pejoratives. It may be mentioned here that all these themes cannot be understood by a native English speaker.
The very fact that even the police personnel who are supposed to be the protectors of women are also abusive to the majority womenfolk here brings in the point that even the government is abusive to the women.
Ineptitude of the Act drafters: The drafters of the Act in context have no experience of what it is to face the police personnel from the other end of the indicant word communication. That much is evident. For, the very casual and callous manner in which the Act has been drafted giving such intrusive power to police personnel of questionable calibre and refinement, points to the ineptitude of the drafters to contemplate on such matters.
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