SLUT

Slut by msh

Before you read this article, here is an exercise for you:

Exercise:

  • Imagine your mother, sister or daughter walking on a deserted road.

  • Now imagine a man following her.

  • He gets closer and keeps his hand on her back.

  • Then he sexually harasses her.

  • Then he passes a creepy smile and leaves.

Done ? OK, lets begin the article.

__________________

There are tears in her eyes as she looks up for help. She clinches the seat of the bus more tightly and tries to change her position. But all in vain, as the bus is jam packed. She is barely eleven years of age and is being sexually harassed in a herded bus, in the presence of her ignorant mother. She couldn’t utter a word of protest as she is too young to figure out a way to explain what is happening.

The man is 45 years of age. He very cautiously touches her private parts. A girl nearby notices the activities of this man and with all her might pusher the old man away and pulls the girl close to her and hugs her tightly.

The aforementioned incident is not a fictitious fib. Unfortunately, it’s a true account of what happened in a passenger bus in Kashmir. In a herded bus, we assume it to be normal seeing a woman stuck among men. Well, its not. Many a times we fail to see the trouble the girl is in. She seems fine but she isn’t. She, as you fail to realize, is being molested by some person in the presence of gobs of people. After getting home, she is probably going to lock herself in the washroom and cry for hours, for being too weak to protect her integrity. To molester it doesn’t seem molesting as such, because he is not abusing her sexually to the extreme extent. He concludes, since the girl is not complaining or kvetching, she likes it too. The people nearby conceive that if the girl was in trouble, she would have complained about it. They expect her to say, ‘Excuse me, this man in this crowded bus is molesting me’. She knows the man could simply pass on an excuse that the bus is crowded and the touches were unintentional and then the girl would be the laughingstock.

A very good friend of mine recently shared her story. She tried to kill herself thrice because she was a victim to sexual harassment by her teacher. She was even warned with severe menace that if she intended to take any action against the teacher, the teacher would rape her. She was too scared to take any action and when no option appeared binding, she tried to commit suicide.

Religious scholars have taught us very well, that women should cover their bodies and dress as per Islamic shariah. Very well. We should appreciate the endeavors our Imams and Khateebs are making in this regard. But what is much required in our society today, is to preach, that a woman wearing any kind of clothes is not a treat to enjoy. If asking girls to wear modest clothes is a requirement, then it is equally required, to teach men to lower their lustful gaze when a girl passes. Zulaikha tried to seduce Prophet Joseph by wearing the best of her attire and invited Joseph to a locked room. She was beautiful, rich and young. But Joseph was a man of honorable character. He didn’t commit any sort of indecency with her. Why don’t we take away morals from such stories. If having sex or sexually harassing was a way to treat girls wearing revealing costumes, then Joseph would have disgraced and sexually harassed Zulaikha. He didn’t. Instead he saved his character by lowering his gaze. If we ask of girls to have a highly respectful character, we equally have to try to attain Joseph’s character.

In an definitive tone I’d say that in Kashmir, a girl wearing jeans has been called a slut. If western clothing is a scale for measuring a slut level then every girl who wears a western outfit is a slut. Even if she is not a Muslim, she is a slut. We don’t stop here. I have witnessed people calling a girl in simple sharwar kameez, a slut. Because her gaze ran through a boy for 2 seconds. Slutified. The one in Abaya, covered from head to toe is also a slut. Theory states, she is a huge slut and now she is trying to hide her identity because everyone knows she is a slut. These are not some concocted thoughts that I am writing to make the article sound more appealing. This is the actual truth of our society. Just because you have not heard or seen it yet, doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. This is the reality of our society. In Kashmir, being a girl means being a slut.

If you accidentally see a boy in his eyes, you are a slut. If you receive a call in a bus you are a slut. If you speak in English, you are a slut. If you are making a phone call while walking on a road, you are a slut. If you are eating chips in front of people, you are a slut. If you go to restaurants, you are a slut. If you talk to your male classmate about the classwork, you are a slut. If you laugh in front of elders, guess what ? you are a slut. Remember this, even if you are not a slut, You are a Slut.

A very important elucidation is to be made. Those people who keep on calling every second girl a slut are very few. Most men wont call any random girl a slut. But the former are strong, vulgar, vivid and more on the surface. We all have our likes and dislikes. There is nothing wrong is hating western style of dressing. There is nothing wrong in sharing your dressing preferences with people as long as they are not insulted. There is nothing wrong is holding a respectful conversation with a girl who is wearing western outfit and sharing your views with her in a respectful manner. But on the basis of one’s dressing, no religion allows you to call her a slut or abuse her or harass her.

Most of us have seen women being harassed, verbally, sexually or in any other way. We think its normal to pass a comment on a girl walking by. Not only normal, we feel obligatory to speak some ill. We laugh at her after abusing or passing a rude disrespectful comment and even go on to claim that its our birth right to abuse and harass a female. Well then its birthright of some other men to abuse and harass our sisters and daughters and mothers.

May be you haven’t noticed it yet, but sexual harassment is happening. Its real. Women are being molested. In Kashmir, within one decade, 95 of every 100 female (10 -50 years of age) are being harassed at least once and at most hundreds of times. Considering your family to be among the left out 5% ? No. They are the elderly women or infant girl children.

We have heard around us that in colleges and schools, the teacher is the molester. In offices, the colleague is the molester. In public places almost everyone is enjoying their share. At driving institute, the instructor is the molester. In police departments, some policeman is the molester. In courts, the lawyer is the molester et cetra. This is happening. Believe it or not but it actually is happening. I asked you to imagine your mother, daughter or your sister being molested. Because that’s the only way we realize how dreadful sexual harassment is. And what you imagined, has actually happened. Who knows even more than that and she couldn’t even open her mouth because she was afraid that she would be called a slut. Young girls are afraid to open their mouth in front of their parents, because they feel ashamed to talk such things to their parents. Some girls disclose their ail to their mother and the answer usually is to ignore them. Mother has been there once. She was helpless then and she feels helpless for her child, now. So the suggestion daughter gets is to ignore people touching her body.

If in anyway you muster all your courage to raise your voice, these molesters will prove you wrong by the ‘all prepared’ answers and then you’ll be a target for taunts and pangs. People will call you an attention seeker or even a slut.

So when all doors shut, the only way out seems suicide. You think you’ll commit suicide and all will get better. But it doesn’t. The second part of the story begins after the suicide. If you commit suicide there are multiple suicidal theories for you.

Theory 1: She committed suicide because she was in a relationship and the boy left her.

Theory 2: She committed suicide because she got less marks in examination.

Theory 3: Her parents wanted to marry her somewhere else, et cetra.

Ten minutes after reading this article, you’ll forget about it. OK let it be twenty. But what if I tell you, right now as you’re reading this, your sister in washroom, is crying because someone has sexually harassed her recently . Will you still ignore everything ? Will you still pay a deaf ear ? If not your sister, but right now, at this moment, while you are reading this, someone’s sister is crying and thinking of committing suicide. And who knows, may be someone has even committed suicide.

If you are educated enough to read this, I am sure you are not one of the molesters. But if you are doing nothing to stop it, you are as equally a molester. You see everyday, friends, shopkeepers, guards, bus conductors, drivers, rickshaw drivers, pedestrians et cetra passing rude and harassing comments to girls. You don’t say a word. Because she is not your sister, not your mother, not your daughter. And when your mother, daughter or sister is being harassed, other men like you would feel the same. Not their daughter, not their sister, not their mother.

The concept of respectfully approaching a girl is alien to Kashmiris. In Kashmir, harassing a girl actually means impressing a girl. We don’t realize that there is a fine line between impressing and eve teasing.

Way out:

To every problem are hundred solution. If any sort of molestation or harassment in any form happens to you, don’t feel afraid or shy to raise your voice then and there. If you feel any bad touch, which you think could be unintentional, politely ask the person to maintain distance. If he repeats it, call them out loud on their behavior and inform everyone who is around. Don’t sound confused. If you know he is doing it on purpose, speak confidently and tell everyone that the person is trying to abuse you.

Its incumbent on men of realization, who see a girl in a crammed space stuck with other men, to offer help by giving off your seat. Or if you feel a girl is uncomfortable, ask her politely if she needs any help.

Its simple, no philosophical saying, ‘being good is good’. If you raise your voice against this social evil, we can surely make a huge difference. Share this information, talk these subjects with friends and family. Remember, if you are trying to protect the modesty of some girl, someone else, somewhere is trying to protect the modesty of your mother, your sister, your daughter. A woman is a part of our society and an equally important part as men. We should ask ourselves. Do they have to get raped to live in our society ?

Information:

The section of the Indian Penal Code that can be applied on the cases of harassment against female are:

Section 294, 354 and 509.

Moin S. Hakak

4th day of June 2017

01:12 AM

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s