Accidents are for others, so thought I.
As I had had driven kilometers two hundred thousand,
I had had bike-rides kilometers two hundred thousand.
Yes, I know now that accidents are not just for others!
As always, it has come unexpectedly.
The cause not mine, the effect totally against me!
The damaged vehicle, the incredible escape,
Sans injuries personal, though money lost,
It is not tragedy, as the episode ending happily!
Yes, accidents are eye openers in many respects. The seat belt helped me from fatal injuries. I have begun using helmet on bike after this…
But I had Continue reading “Accident.”
Love and war have no qualm
Lover and warrior have no calm
Loving, warring for a realm
To kiss the palm or to cut the palm.
Foul and fair never antonyms
In war and love they are synonyms
For the nature is to wage war always
As love is the core of existence.
Arjuna saw no foul to kill kin
When Krsna called it his vocation
Love , life’s, emotion’s avocation
None but the brave can go on to win!
The bloody flower of love and war blooms
Irrespective of the foul, fair scruples.
The Wise, the Intelligent and the Fool.
The mood set in by loneliness in the Apartment in Salmiya, Kuwait appears to have reformed me to philosophical, contemplative temperament. I cannot refer to loneliness alone for the shift from laziness to pensiveness. The shift in mood has also been due to the news from home about the illness of my mother. I was too homesick to sleep for a few days. I was at a loss and suffocated by my incapacity in getting my mom on the phone. For a while I even cursed the moment wherein I had chosen to decide about the Kuwait journey. I thought my presence might have led to her early recovery. See friends, I was in a fix as I couldn’t fly home all on a sudden since the return ticket was on 8th of May and I was otherwise positively bound to discharge the official duty assigned to me by my employer.
This is the time for a bit of philosophical rumination. My mind is preoccupied with ideas on wisdom, intelligence and idiocy. The ideas do not come on their own abruptly in a flash or like a lightning from the heavens. The ideas are formed as seeds…on appropriate terrain it sprouts, grows up into a tree with flowers, fruits which are yet again ready to deliver seeds… The movement is cyclic though the individual entities change. Nature always is cyclic as our own planet which has got an oval shape. Without taking a U-turn we can ultimately come to the point wherefrom we had started. In other words, the starting point and the destination point can be one and the same.
Then what is the soil on which the ideas eventually have dropped on! I really have taken note from my own experience that I am not seriously received by others; I mean according to the merit and desert I think I am eligible for. For example, whenever I use to warn my friends or relatives about the repercussions of taking a particular step they are ordinarily to brush aside my advice. They take the other route and on many occasions they are found to meet with hardships. I have only sympathy for those who disregard me. I am though not happy with their acrimony to me on account of their failures, which were wholly irrespective of me and principally respective of them. With every such mishap and failure they become more and more inimical, as if I were responsible for their misfortunes. In no way was I responsible for their falls. I from my experiences or from the experiences of others have learnt good and bitter lessons of life. These experiences and the lessons therefrom I think I have come to be less foolish. I never though claim myself as wise as only the fools think that they are wise. I am more commonsensical than I was, say, before a decade. I will never claim that I have the rare excellence of commonsense inherent in me. I also hold the view that “common” sense indeed is a rare virtue.
The faculty of predicting the future problems of a particular step is not god given or supernatural. It is, conversely, due to the strength of experiences and the lessons I have learnt therefrom. Then, if so how could I harness the horse of experiences and derive and acquire the rare faculty. Yes I will say: By being silent, listening, memorizing (not mechanical, like a parrot) and by practicing. What I refuse and am reluctant to do is teaching others the lessons I have learnt. I cannot teach lessons of life. One has to undergo himself/herself through the heat and fire, the very ordeal. Only that will bring about the change for the better. Advice is the last option as it is the most hated thing for too many. Of course I do give advices sometimes as clues to avoid future problems for the benefit of the receivers, especially when they are the intimate, close-to-heart ones, despite the invariable aftermath of me becoming the victim of my own good intentions.
As a rule, I am not predisposed to making watertight divisions about human conduct and realities of life, in general. Anyhow, referring to the foregoing paragraph I am venturing to deviate from my nature. I am to make a broad (never watertight!) classification between the Wise, the Intelligent and the Simpleton! The persons who learn lessons from the experience of others is a wise person; the persons who learn experiences from his own experiences are intelligent persons; and those persons who are not even able to learn any lesson from their own experiences are indeed fools! This is not a watertight compartmentalization. Still it is an indicator to fix one’s status.
The reality of life is that no one has walked on earth without falling. Humans have learnt the faculty of standing erect and walking through many a fall. That is why they say, “Failures are Pillars of Success”. Hence, listen silently, patiently, memorize what you have listened to, put into practice the lessons you have learnt from your experience and of the ones of others as well. If you have passed out all the stages successfully you ultimately are qualified to teach the lessons of life to others.
Advice? Me? Yes: why not!
“Never ignore clues, namely, the indicators and signals on the road.”
“Never blame the Postman for a bad letter.”
Dutiful Work and Beautiful Life!
There is the tradition in Ayurveda thereby every treatment is initiated by giving medicine for complete emptying of the bowels. I am purified by Mr. Smirnoff and all the impurities are now out, thanks to the spirits in Mr. Smirnoff. I have a new day at hand in Kuwait. I am quite new to the life and habits here and I, therefore, have to begin afresh. Every Examination day I have to get ready sharply at 7 a.m. when Mr. Tanveer, the staffer of Universal Institute for Private Training, arrives at my apartment in Salmiya which is located near the City Center mall. With no or little sleep during the night and no rest during the last couple of days, I am a bit worn out and shabby in order to take up the job at the Off Campus Center.
By the time I have done all the nippy morning duties Mr. Tanveer has arrived to take me first to the Vegetarian hotel, “Uduppi”. Seeing vada-sambar and Idli my nausea has given way to saliva. After the sumptuous breakfast, by 7.20 we reach the Center. Lo! There are Ms. Fatima, Asha, Danesh to receive me. My first impression is the best impression, especially the warmth, the resourcefulness of Ms. Fatima! The Indian Embassy Officer Mr. SanjivSakalani who is already there with the question paper packets indeed looks like a very friendly person to chat with. Every one of them behaves as experienced experts in their respective duties. There are only a handful of candidates to take the supplementary examinations. I am hurt to note that the regular off campus programs outside the university jurisdiction have been struck down by a far-reaching university order.
I say far-reaching university order, because I, by the very first day itself, have come to experience how earnestly people here are craving for doing courses of M.G (Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam). Almost every phone call at the Center is concerning enquiries about joining courses of M.G. The reason is that the people in Kuwait, especially, Indian, Bengali, even middle-east repatriates or expatriates and N.R.I’s prefer M.G. to other Indian universities. They, with reluctance and displeasure, are constrained to join courses of Mysore or Calicut Universities. Now I wonder why M.G. alone follows meticulously the bizarre upshots of litigations while others still continue to run Off Campus institutions beyond their territorial jurisdiction! From my experience in regard to the enthusiasm displayed by the stake-holders to join my university, I have learnt that Mahatma Gandhi University positively enjoys the approbation of the whole world, thanks to its unique name “Mahatma Gandhi”.
The Examination started at 7.30 a.m. (Indian Time- 10 a.m.) and I have completed the related work well in time. Actually everything goes smooth and hassle free, far better than in most of the affiliated colleges of the universities in Kerala. While sitting idle I use to overhear the classes going on there. The classes are apparently engaged by faculty of high quality and experience. I think my guesswork cannot go wrong as their beautiful English, uncompromising pronouncing skills and stylish accent really are quite illuminating their credentials and talents as pedagogue. The picture of reality is far from the overestimated allegations of commercialization and malpractices. It is quite a classified truth that some of the self-financing colleges in Kerala are more commercialized and a few of them reportedly not having qualms even to abet copying malpractices during university examinations. Right from the days of my first acquaintance with Off Campus Institutions in 2004 as section officer of Off Campus Tabulation Section to the date of the promulgation of the recent university order striking down the institutions I never or ever had the slightest apprehension of such an abrupt closure. I constantly had a notion that Off Campus Institutions would stand there as far as the University is there!
With the exception of the above unenviable future prospects of M.G. Off Campus Centers, I am a happy man. The accommodation, food, transportation, etc. are “ash-posh”. My primary concern was my vegetarian ways. This has been well rejoined by the Uduppi Hotel nearby. In short, I have to note that by the first day itself I am on the right track sans any friction or hardship, whatsoever. I look forward to the same degree of rapport and smoothness in the days ahead too in respect of my work and life as well, here in Kuwait. I hope that the first impression which indeed has been the best one will carry on to retaining the same pitch throughout. The work is certainly to be engaged dutifully, the life too is hopefully to be spent, buoyantly, beautifully!
[i] The repercussions of the order are, indeed, far reaching. This may be understood only by knowing the concerns and grievances of the students, alumni and other stake-holders in Kuwait who want to see the retention of the institution as an Off Campus center of Mahatma Gandhi University, Kottayam. I have acquired this collective knowledge through informal chats with the staff here, the students and other visitor. Let me enumerate them, one by one:
- It is reliably learnt that Off Campus Centres of other Indian Universities having recognition of U.G.C. are still conducting Courses/ Programs in Kuwait.
- In today’s world of technological advancement, the question of territorial jurisdiction may not be made a reason for closure of Off Campus Centre of Kuwait, since the world has shrunken to a global village within the World Wide Web. In this respect, it is relevant to note that many of the high profile western universities and a few of the Indian Universities as well have switched over to online mode, rather irrespective of the territorial jurisdiction of the institutions.
Inter alia, it is reported in the media that the Union Government is about to allow six Off Campus institutions to Deemed Universities, though these Universities have no jurisdiction anywhere other than their own campuses.
- The allegation of misuse of Off Campus system is founded on the prejudiced notion that there possibilities for commercialization and dilution of education in Off Campus stream. The authorities appear to be under the misconception that there are examination malpractices in Off Campus institutions. Regarding the expenses for undergoing studies in the Off Campus centre in Kuwait I can honestly tell that the expenses here are less, when compared with other educational institutions in Kuwait.
Regarding the alleged malpractices in Inter National Off Campus Centers I am of the view that there is a fool proof system which is capable of making malpractices well nigh a matter of impossibility. This is so because here the University examinations are conducted under the supervision of the Indian Embassy. The Chief Superintendent is invariably a high profile official from the Embassy, the Additional Superintendent is a senior Faculty of Mahatma Gandhi University or from colleges affiliated to the University and the Administrative Superintendent is one of the experienced Senior Staffers of the University.
- As mentioned earlier, the majority of students and aspirants here are originally from places which are well within the territorial jurisdiction of Mahatma Gandhi University. When the Indian Government is earnestly extending all succor to N.R.I’s and even seriously thinking about granting them the right to participate in elections, it is an unjust and untimely backtracking decision to close down the Off Campus Centre on flimsy and nonexistent grounds.
- Many of the Indians working in Kuwait have come here by depriving themselves of their academic advancement as they were forced to discontinue their studies in India to earn a livelihood in Kuwait. Off Campus Centers did provide them a chance to resume their education from the scratches.
- There are facilities for Indians here to pursue studies upto Plus Two level. Thereafter, especially for girl students, the chance for U.G/higher education is getting dim as the expenses are higher and that the educational institutions and their affiliations may be even bogus ones. Besides, the parents do not prefer to send the girl students to hostels of such not so reliable institutions.
EVER REWARDING FATE!
If there is a desire there is bound to have a way to fulfill it. A desire shall never be allowed to tone up to the extremity of an infatuation. Even without getting to the disturbing level of obsession, I am endowed with the bounty I may not even deserve. I am given more than my due. I am not avaricious, though I do not hesitate to take whatever comes to me naturally. Others may term it as lack of direction, but I prefer to call it the faith in fate. I am patient and willing to wait for the opportune moment to fulfill my desires as and when they come by, one by one. With this patient waiting the fate rewards me chances slowly but surely. Fate is not an antagonist; conversely it is a protagonist, at least as for me. So you may ask the question, ‘then you have no role to play in your selection of choices (chances)?’ Yes, I do take the necessary steps as soon as the fate shows the all-important clue to proceed with the chance. I never show my back to the clue of fate. This has rescued me a lot from committing blunders, falling in pitfalls. This permanent, patient, alert, vigilant waiting for the clues of fate has rewarded me with umpteen opportunities as well.Hence, as for me fate is both corrective and progressive a force to reckon with, for accomplishing a fruitful life.
Going abroad and that too airborne had been my cherished dream for quite a long time. I have accidentally struck with the chance of going abroad by air. See the felicity of Fate in fetching me the coveted chance! I never snatch a chance from the hands of Fate; conversely chances are handpicked for me by fate from time to time. Lo! Listen to me for a while how the vicissitudes of Fate converge upon someone like me, in what all strange ways!!!In my office as I was searching for the examination results of the students, I came across the University order inviting willingness for deputation to international off campus centres to conduct examinations in the Gulf region. It was 4.15 pm, and that I had to personally hand over the willingness to the concerned office before 4.45. I got a print out and filled within no time, got the counter signature of my superior. Only 25 minutes to cover 10 K.M. It is not possible by bus. To my pleasant surprise I saw Somanathan Sir about to leave. I ran unto him and he showed great interest in taking me to the destination. Later my willingness got accepted and I was able to leave for Kuwait on 10th April 2016 from Cochin Airport at 9.05 am.
Lo! See me standing there in the majestic Cochin International airport sans any idea or knowledge about the etiquettes and formalities of air travel! Of course I had to yield to nervousnessa bit, the nervousness in the anticipation of the unknown. Fortunately, there was nothing untoward; the checking was hassle free and it passed off smoothly as the personnel there were all cordial. The transit from one counter to the other was so natural that I could not feel stress of any degree. As I had heard the final call to proceed to board the flight, my heart beat began to mount. After I got in it got subsided to normalcy. The safety demonstration of the crew was lively and gracious. It did make my mind calm. I fastened the belt. I expected I would be given cotton to stop my ears. But nothing happened. I was expecting some bitter nausea like experience during takeoff and while climbing up the burgeoning heights. Within a few minutes the plane was at an altitude of 3 K.M. After some time it climbed up to 7-8K.M. altitude. I checked with the temperature, it was below -3o. I was warned about the cloud collision, but fortunately I experienced none. To speak the truth I had no experience of air sickness and I found it a pleasurable experience altogether.
One more thing I have to tell. The Jet Air flight was not a direct one to Kuwait. It was a domestic one taking me first to Mumbai. In the meantime the crew member gave me breakfast with dish including sambar-vada, salad, tea, biscuits etc. I was prepared to take a peg, if it was for free…I did not see them provide liquor, anyhow. I found it too difficult to dine with fork and knife. Still somehow I could take food using them in a messy manner. The announcement for landing had resounded in my ears. The plane landed exactly at 11.05 a.m.with a thundering sound and it sped fast through the runway quite some distance. I was there at the ChatrapatiShivaji International Airport in Mumbai for the first time. It looked quite stupendous in size and looks. It was neat, silent and smooth to walk around. The connection flight was to take off only at 5.55 p.m. I was nervous about spending the long time and also about the emigration procedure. I left everything for fate but with constant vigilance on the clues emanating from the Goddess of Fate. The airport was so ravishing to the eyes that the time for the connection flight looked not enough to completely relish its grandeur. I spent the time in such a worthwhile and pleasant way that I could not even reach at the right time for checking and emigration clearance. I was ready and waiting curiously for my second journey on air and of course my maiden international areal excursion!
Anyone reading my post is likely to wonder why I attach this much importance to my maiden flight journey to a foreign country. The fact of the matter of attaching this much importance is thanks to the reality that unless I have travelled this time I would not have travelled abroad in the near future. Now I believe that this is a good beginning that will take me to the better ends…I am patiently, vigilantly awaiting, listening to the clues of fate to avail the next bounty or to avert the next heartbreak as these clues could turn out to be the turning point in life.
The other day the neighbor maid while sweeping the courtyard accidentally and unawares picked a snake mistaking it for some natural waste. Realizing the reality she threw the wriggling thing instantaneously with a sharp shrill. It was 7’o clock and my wife was about to depart for her workplace.She turned around to hear the strident voice and took a cudgel to strike the snake. The snake was lying still on the ground as the rough ground was too uncomfortable for it to move on. I was in a quandary, whether to strike or not was the question pestering me. I snatched the cudgel from her and commanded her to leave .
It was there a matter of prestige and pride for me.If I did not strike then all my esteem and prestige would have vanished into the thin air. My inner voice stood against killing any living being.The external pressure of circumstances, at last, had the last word. For the first time in my life I was about to kill a living thing.(exceptions:mosquito, ants,very small insects and micro-organisms)My mind was unwilling, hands shivering still circumstances trigger me to commit killing in cold blood. I struck with the cudgel right on the hood of he snake. There was no need of another thump. Its tail till wagged. I closely examined the being to know that It carried all the traits of viper.
As for me the event turned the morning rather a moody,murky one. The scene of the wagging tail, wide open mouth of the reptile really had made me sick. The sick mind was not just thanks to the ugliness of the being but comprehensively due to the compunction heaved from the empathy with another living being which also had felt the same pain (any human would have felt) when it was thumped with a cudgel.After all, why humans turn inimical to snakes.His very reflex action is but killing the poor being. In the instant case the reptile was lying on the ground helplessly trying to get out of the rough patches..the maid picking it up inadvertently…. It is striking that the reptile did not strike. In spite of all the curtsy it was mercilessly attacked and killed. Now I understand that mostly the cause of violence is fear. The snakes hiss, bite humans; the humans kills them at the very sight…all this conduct grounded on fear and prejudices.
By any standard killing a snake may be a trivial thing. But as for me it looked like a deviation from my real nature. I have been unacquainted with ways of violence. Nonviolence was there in my blood.Yes, the stress on AHIMSA has been there in my blood, handed down from generations..My mom,Dad,their parents and all their forefathers were supposed to be Swaathikas or good natured, nonviolent people.They were pure vegetarians too! Are we all good natured just because we are pure vegetarians? Are all the ill natured people are so just because they eat non vegetarian food? Does food effect character? If so things would have been easier to reform criminals! The reality is that the seed and the Terrain do equally contribute to the formation of character.I am a pure vegetarian, still I do not think that I am nonviolent to all living beings because of this. Conversely I am a vegetarian due to my nonviolent traits. I have been so from the seed, from the homely terrain. The fact may be that I hold firm to the view that I am part of the whole world, nay! the whole universe where every living being is uniquely entitled to its life and share of resources.It is not just the survival of the fittest…it is the survival of the fittest who can survive the mutations and adapt themselves to the new challenges. Those who cannot adapt will wither away to oblivion.The term ‘fittest’, therefore, cannot be equated with muscle power.
The killing of the snake and the surrounding thoughts have revisited my mind at the glimpse of the sad visage of my young daughter, Surya. She was stunned to see a the sad spectacle of a dying cat. The cat carried no bleeding injury. It was weak and had limped upto her and then collapsed before her…She had to witness the demise of the cat.The sight had stirred her mind…The feeling of empathy rose high and there were tears in her eyes. After a few words of wisdom I could relieve her of the intense feeling of grief. I was happy to see that my daughter literally takes after me in showing empathy to all living beings as I had taken after all my forefathers. Conversely it is the powerful expression of moral courage. It is never a frailty. My vegetarianism too has deep roots into the soil of moral courage which activates me to choose nonviolent life in every respect, at any cost.
Hence he answer is that the inability is rooted in moral courage and not grounded on the ineptitude of cowardice.The moral courage not to commit violence or an offence which is harmful to other living beings is not there just because of one’s food habits. A person, a vegetarian, may be incapable of perpetrating physical violence on others; but at the same time he may be a person who has no qualms to mentally harass others and that he may have no scruple to commit any sin. Food habits have, therefore, no role in evolving one’s character. The three forms of violence, violence of mind, words and physical deed, are equally harmful to the victims. A perpetrator of violence of the first two types are in no way of lesser culpability than the third one.
I’m a beneficiary of this gift of our ancient heritage…
The richness of the bliss handed down by the sage
Made invisible to us by those who kept us in seige
The Great Man Modiji has regained our lost visage!
He helps us recover our lost lustre in history page!
The great United Nations was made to cheer Yoga
Dear Modi could make twenty first July Day of Yoga!
The insu!ts of seculars offset with pride of Yoga!
|2 minutes each side.|
|Bend left knee, place left foot under right hip. Bend right knee, place right foot on left side of left knee. Hold left knee or right foot with the left hand – keep right knee on the left of left arm. Turn tunk to right, look back over right shoulder, right hand on ground or on waist as close to left thigh as possible.
Repeat with left knee bent and trunk turning to left.
You may also hold hold hands through the gap below the raised knee.
|Increase the elasticity of the spine, and massage the abdomen and internal organs|
|Promotes healthy secretion of the circulatory, respiratory, alimentary and genito-urinary systems. Keeps the spine flexible preventing the bones from early ossification. Supplies large quantity of blood to the spinal roots of the nerves, thereby giving them…|
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PROTECTION OF WOMEN FROM VIOLATION OF SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS WITH REFERENCE TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ACT OF 2005.
Sex and Reproduction are two unique and inseparable facets of spousal relationship. They are one and the same, still as antonymous as between sea and the shore. They are mutually exclusive and inclusive like the two sides of the same coin. Sex is possible without reproduction; reproduction can be possible without sex, in the surge of new scientific inventions. Sex provides the natural impetus for reproduction. The two are intertwined and have inseparable connectivity pertaining to the health of the engaging partners. As health is a precondition for the quality of life as enshrined in Article 21 of the Constitution, the denial of the precondition conducive to attaining this right can be legally redressed through Constitutional remedies.
In matrimony impotency is a ground for divorce. But if a woman is denied sex due to the apathy of the husband, she has no choice to leave the matrimony. If she is denied the excitement of consummation during sex she has no remedy. This is too personal a matter for law to lay its hand on. Denial of sex to the spouse is indirect cause for the commencement of domestic violence. This is a case of emotional abuse which has serious ramifications in family life. If a man can keep his woman happy on bed he is assured of a peaceful home. As between a husband and a wife lack of sexual relations can lead to incidence of domestic violence. Sex is not a mere tool for reproduction as Sex is a rejuvenator of relationships.
Domestic Violence and Other Wrongs:
Domestic Violence is a standalone type of a wrong which evade\s a satisfactory, comprehensive, all-inclusive definition. The unique facet of DV is that it takes place in the intimate relationship, in the apparently safe shared household. Whereas other wrongs are perpetrated, maybe, by a stranger on another stranger. One occurs in the private sphere of life and the other in the public sphere of life. The State is more concerned about peace in society than peace at home.The state cannot allow the delinquent to have his capricious ways as it is disconcerting to the State. The State employs punishment to the sinner to promote deterrence and to have retribution to satisfy the victim. The other aspect is the need of rehabilitation of the offender as he cannot be allowed to freely roam in society. The protection of the victim appears to be the last priority of Criminal Law. The emphasis is on social control through correction, deterrence and retribution. The aim is social security and not the security of the victim alone.
Domestic violence cannot be called a singular, exclusive incident of violence of the perpetrator on the victim. It is a continual infliction of violence by manifold, unknown machinations. The crime of a stranger on another is punishable by law; but the same act if perpetrated by the husband on the wife could be qualified as a crime, is a moot point. Law can take its due course despite the fact that the offence has occurred within wedlock. The attitude of general Law is not gender sensitive to protect the woman. Hence the need and relevance of a gender sensitive law.
In reference to the issues of sexual and reproductive rights the occurrences wherein these rights are denied need not be singular. In wedlock a single incident of violence is condoned; the violence does not stop there. It is repeated in fresh cycles of violence. The woman is in utter helplessness and in a dilemma as to whether leave or not. The recurrence of violence is endemic in domestic relationships. There is no deterrence, no retribution , no correction, owing to nonreporting of the incident.
The wrong of marital rape does constitute a domestic violence in the Act of 2005 or in any of the Indian statute books. This discrepancy between the treatment of Law to the same act in two realms of human life, namely, Private and Public is discriminative and prejudicial to women. Though Indian Law does not treat forced sex as a wrong, the law on Human Rights has made inroads into the private sphere of life. The Law on Human Rights of course has got the voice of International Law criteria, and the same spirit is deeply engrained our Constitution in its Fundamental Rights.
When Sex is viewed from the angle of health rights it has umpteen diverse dimensions. Sex of course is a precondition for begetting progeny. Indian law on domestic violence has not criminalised forced sex or marital sex. That is, consent is not a legal requirement. In short, law condones or even permits rape if it is within matrimony. Invariably, the victim is the woman. The after-effects of rape within marriage and without marriage are differently apprehended by Indian law. Certainly this stance of Indian law may have its own unique reasons. Cultural relativism plays a role in the making of different criteria in the formulation of domestic violence in different national laws. The same Indian law which takes unnatural sex as an offence even in marriage, though with consent, is strangely blind to the more heinous crime of marital rape. Though marital rape can be broadly termed sexual abuse, inflicting irreparable damage to the body and psyche of the victim, it has failed to figure in as a specific offence or wrong in any of the Indian statute book. If consent is not a prerequisite in marital sex, what right is left in marriage, as for women? This is a serious blemish on an otherwise spotless enactment. The grave denial of sexual and reproductive justice to women cannot be viewed just as a personal issue. It has to be taken to the human right jurisprudence, so that the private matter could be brought to the public dominion of human rights. Personal becomes political. Her predicament is not biologically determined, conversely it is socially determined.
The D.V Act is found ineffective and insufficient in protecting the reproductive rights of the woman in the shared household. Domestic Violence may be seen as men’s counter reaction to women’s ever-growing yearning for emancipation from the oppression of home as men want women to remain tied to their domestic prison called home. If a woman challenges the patriarchal order by venturing out of the shared household in a nonconforming outlook, she will be indicted by society as misguided beings who have sacrificed life for success.
Woman’s status in Adultery vis-a-vis Marital rape: Glaring illustration of denial of sexual rights:
Woman is an object and Man is the subject. In S.497 of IPC the husband of the woman who has abetted adultery is entitled to proceed against the man who has committed adultery with his wife. Woman is here denigrated as property or chattel of the husband who is the master or the owner. If the property called wife is stolen by another man, the latter could be nabbed on a complaint by the owner of the property, the husband. This is a clear indicator to the patriarchal attitude of law. The same attitude is seen expressed in the case of marital rape. The violence perpetrated by the husband is not weighed in terms of propriety or neutrality and criminality as the married woman is an asset owned by the husband for his exclusive enjoyment and possession. The (lack of)law on marital rape and the law on adultery are violative of the sexual rights of married women as victim and abettor, respectively. The woman is not held as a human, but only as property of men for his possession and enjoyment. As a property she has no right of her own. The abettor woman in adultery is not liable because the owner of the property has to continue with the possession of the property. The abettor woman is set free not because of the gender sensitive law but for certain patriarchal reasons. In a country where justice is administered to women as if she were a property under the ownership of men cannot guarantee the sexual and reproductive rights of women.
Right to Healthcare and Addiction:
Smoking is injurious to health; passive smoking is more injurious to health. The victims of passive smoking are the members of the family, those who are intimate to the smoker. He is exposing his wife and children to health hazards, with no fault of theirs. The bad effects of smoking are harmful to the reproductive health of the woman and the safety of the foetus inside.
Consumption of alcohol is another grave menace to the peaceful ambience of family. The intoxicated condition alone cannot be branded as the very reason for violence. Alcohol is but the stimulant to externalise the internal attitude of the perpetrator. The alcoholic husband can cause fatal injuries to the woman and children leading to the denial of reproductive justice of the woman in unseen, umpteen ways.
Personal Law and Domestic Violence:
Prevalence of Personal Law is a threat to application of general law in family law matters. Religion and culture are too blended to separate one from the other. Personal law is the customs, rules of the respective religion, imbued with the status of law. The rights and duties of men and women in family life are governed by personal law. The rites of marriage, the prerequisites, inheritance, divorce, adoption etc, of the people of one religion can be different from the people of another religion. Cultural relativism is the harmful outcome of personal law. The desired unique uniform civil code is upset by the overemphasis on personal law. Consequent on the prevalence of personal law, the issues concerning (eg. Bigamy, divorce) family matters could be distinct from one person to the other depending on the religion he or she belongs to.
The national as well as the international stakeholders are in two minds as to whether it is appropriate to apply uniform civil code or to maintain the culture, customs and usages of personal law in order to protect the identity of every culture, to stop invasion of minority rights , etc, As a consequence of personal law and the orthodox customs embedded in it the women are made to suffer. This is so because the personal law is based on religious rules, age old customs and usages which are patriarchal. Under the influence of religion women have to turn pregnant against their will as victims of marital rape. This repeated, recurrent pregnancy of the woman becomes a real threat to her health. Not only the woman, but the progeny too is disregarded and ignored, giving way to a new generation without health or wealth. In this context it is apt to voice support for a uniform civil code for the overall progress of the nation in general and the women in particular.
Mutilation of female genital parts is another incidence of damaging the sexual and reproductive health of the women.Under the adverse influence of religion women are denied right for abortion. As a consequence of recurrent occurrence of pregnancy and child birth followed by child care the women are always at the receiving end. Anyhow, the Indian DV Act is succour to women who are reeling under the tribulations perpetrated by their life partners on them due to the respective personal law. In India women are misguided by men to the degree that they are made to think that religion is higher than their own health rights. Under this ploy the women victims turn a blind eye to the protections of the DV Act and take recourse in the orthodox personal law remedies which are patriarchal. Unless women take the initiative to safeguard their rights through DV Act by eschewing the personal law, women will have to lie low suffering from the patriarchal personal laws.
Three fold Encumbrance.
A woman in wedlock has to engage three fold responsibilities viz. of a house-wife, mother and a worker. On the other hand her male counterpart is not to share the responsibilities of the household. She is reeling under the yoke of maternity, menstruation, pregnancy, household work, professional hardwork. As a consequence she becomes a physical wreck. The bitterest experience for her is the apathy of her mate. She has no rest even at a time when rest is inevitable for her very existence. In joint family households rest was compulsorily imposed on her during menstruation. Though this is held by us as an orthodox Hindu custom, in real life terms this period of rest was for her a blessing in disguise. Now the woman of today has no respite anywhere, any time for any exigent reason.
The home is often the place of masculine domination in which men expect the women’s labour to secure the peace they crave. The terms for an ideal home are fixed by his standards. Women are blamed by men for not meeting his standards in maintaining an ideal home. Her standards, health rights, preferences are ignored.The pretext of biological determinism has been employed to tie women to domestic responsibilities. In reality, the inferiority of women is socially constructed rather than biologically determined. This factum can be verified and explained by real life social situations where the degree of inferiority is a variable from society to society. Women’s disabilities are enforced and not biological or natural. The world is Male and the Woman is the ‘other. (de Beauvoir, 1949).Her socially determined burdens and the biologically determined duties have made women incapable of playing a vital role in public life. Her entry in public life is discouraged by men with allegations of misguided conduct. Her domestic services remain unpaid. Her role in procreation, protection, rearing of the offspring goes unrewarded by society. Instead of rewarding women, the patriarchal society is victimising her as she is perpetually subjected to gender violence in a shared household.
What de Beauvoir said about women’s plight in 1949 holds good to contemporary India. Humanity is man. He is the essential and she the incidental; he the main, she the subsidiary or the relative. The life in private sphere becomes explicit in public life. The tribulations of women in one sphere are transferred to the other and vice versa. That is why the author had said, ‘personal becomes political’. The personal ordeal of a woman in a shared household is reflected to the political or public sphere of life through the introduction of Human Right law which does not labour under cultural relativism. Its appeal, content and spirit are couched in universal language.
In short, the three fold tribulations of women have consequently degraded them to a physical wreck, totally and adversely jeopardizing her health. This has exacerbated their sexual and reproductive life, meting out abject injustice usurping the very fundamental rights of human existence.
Lack of toilet facility:
The Government and its administrative machineries are lukewarm in addressing the issues faced by women in respect of menstruation. Toilets are not there in adequate numbers. Houses are not bath or toilet attached. This has raised serious concerns of health and hygiene hazards in the reproductive life of women. In the backdrop of absence or inadequate toilet facility women are forced to store urine in bladder to harmful levels. This, therefore, is a clear case of denial of sexual and reproductive rights. Society or the Government was patriarchal in approach towards the life and death tribulations of woman’s life. Only now the Government and the society have risen to the need of the hour to have toilets in every home, with the new impetus given to cleanliness through the movement National Swachchata Mission. The recent incident of suicide by a girl due to lack of toilet at home shows how critical this issue is for a woman and her self-respect. The absence of toilet in the shared household is essentially to be considered a gender abuse under the law of domestic violence. Marriage of a woman to a household where there is no toilet facility must be checked by law by making toilet facility a precondition for marriage.. This grave issue does not find a specific, deserving mention in the DV Act of 2005.
Domestic Violence: Standpoint of Law.
In a society where everything is patriarchal it is not reasonable to expect something unique from Law. Presumably and explicitly Law is neutral. Bizarrely it is addressing exclusively and essentially the Male. The dichotomy between explicit and implicit is suggestive of hypocrisy. Hence law is an imposter in reference to its proclaimed objectivity, rationality and impartiality. Undoubtedly and unfailingly the reasonable man of Law rules out women from its ambit. In other words, the generic reference to law is Male. Women’s fate is adjudged by standards set by men for men. Men are subjects of law and women its victims. Woman is still invisible to Law as law looks at women with the same standards as it looks at men. Law is made by men as a result of gender inequality in public life. Every administrative and academic branch of Law is governed by men and their patriarchal outlook. A woman’s life is regulated by law, religion and social policy. The paradox about gender justice is that the victim’s fate is adjudged by her very oppressor. Hence her autonomy is a fiction. Grave issues of women are mainly within the spheres of intimate shared household and they still remain largely unregulated by law.
The failure of law to address the issues of women was mainly due to its patriarchal outlook and its generic reference to male. As for law woman was nonexistent. The solution to this problem is introduction of gender sensitive law both in public and private spheres of life. The Domestic Violence Act of 2005 is a humble beginning in this direction. Dowry Protection Act of 1961 was followed by introduction of Section 498 A and Section 304 B in Indian Penal Code. All theses enactments indicate a steady progression of law towards gender sensitive laws, especially to protect women from domestic violence perpetrated on them in the intimate relationships of a shared household.
Constitutionality of Gender Sensitive Domestic Violence Law:
Right to equality is guaranteed by the Indian Constitution in Articles 14-18. Article 15(1) commands, ‘the State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds of only on religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them. The principle of equality before law is a necessary corollary of ‘rule of law’. This mandate of equality which is but non-discrimination has enlarged the scope of Article 14.
Inter alia, it is striking to note that the Supreme Court while commenting on S.497(Adultery) of IPC, ‘….Articles 14 and 15 taken together validate the sentence of S.597, which prohibits a woman from being punished as an abettor of the offence of adultery.’It is strange that the abettor under S.497 and the victim under S. 498 A of IPC are protected by this Constitutional provisions, though under different jurisprudence. The PWDVA of 2005 is held by Delhi High Court as ‘class legislation’ by upholding the Constitutional validity of the Act.
The Constitution enjoins upon the State to make special provisions for women in prohibiting discrimination on grounds of sex. Besides the fact of the neutrality of law is a myth and only gender specific laws can protect the woman victim from domestic violence. In the privacy of a shared household Articles 21 and 14 find a place in order to protect the woman victim of domestic violence through ratifying the international instruments on Human Rights Law by the national government. It is no longer inappropriate to introduce the Constitution in the home.
 Yusuf Abdul Aziz V. State of Bombay, AIR 1954, SC 321.
 Aruna Pramod Shah V Union of India, Writ Petition (Crl) 425/2008.
 Delhi High Court in Harvinder Kaur V. Harminder Singh,( AIR 1984, Del 66) had voiced discontent on introduction of Constitution in the home.