The dictionary states patriarchy is a system where all the power resides with the eldest male in the family but now more than a system or culture , it has become the biggest enemy of the Indian women. Right from the conception of a female in the womb ,she is battling patriarchy. Whether she will be given a chance to be born or will be just pulled out of the womb and thrown in the garbage , also depends on the mercy of her family patriarchs.And even if she is born , she is destined to a life of servitude and despair. Right from discrimination at home in the basic necessities of life as to the right to education, food, clothing to the objectification of her entity by the society and the mindset of equating a woman with either pleasure or with dowry , is not only regressive but suffocating for any and every woman in this country. The worst part is that its not only men who follow and defend patriarchy but women too play a very big part in sustaining it.Right from only giving birth to sons,to training their daughters to be just loyal servants to their future husbands and discouraging them from becoming self-reliant, they not only promote this system but ensure the second class citizenship of women in this country.
Whenever a tragic and heinous crime like rape is committed , more than protesting and condemning it, women either choose to keep mum or along with the men are making irresponsible comments about the victim in question.Either the victim’s clothes or her character or her decision to be somewhere at a particular time is criticized and she becomes an object of ridicule and is labelled as “she asked for it” because we Indian women are taught from childhood that this body of ours is not ours at all and only our future husband has a right over it, so much so that in a hot and humid country like ours , women cannot wear short clothes because the men cannot take it and will end up raping and as a society we will not condemn it because short clothes means provocation and rape is the end result.So patriarchy is indeed promoting and perpetuating this rape culture and off late I have come to this realization that as a society the only collective activity we indulge in these days unfortunately is “Gang Rapes”
Also in India we women cannot decide to stay single as it is imperative for every woman to get married and bear children and clean after our husbands and in-laws as till to this date the age old custom of women leaving their houses after marriage and going to her husband’s house continues.And what happens after that is very very sad,she is at the mercy of her husband and in-laws who make every decision of her life and reduce her to a mere maid with no dreams, no aspirations or no identity so much so that she is not even allowed to keep her surname which is changed to her husbands surname.And the irony of this situation is that, the woman’s father has paid a huge amount of money to get the marriage materialized , in fact she is the one who bought herself a husband but somehow ends up being the slave , and the irony in some cases does not end there as there are some husbands and in-laws who in their greed burn the daughter-in-law alive and generally a mother-in-law ,who is also a woman is instrumental in such proceedings or what should appropriately be called cold -blooded murder!
And all those who will defend this system will say that it is because of this very system that men are taught to respect and protect women and the proof to that is that form of woman is still worshiped as the goddess Durga and Lax mi in our society but that happens only if women remain in the age old defined roles of daughter, sister,wife and mother and if someone tries to break this and tries to become financially independent or voice their opinions or assert their rights, then what happens?This systems pounces on them like blood hungry hounds killing, raping or burning them, inflicting violence in the name of family and honor.
The million dollar or maybe in this situation the billion dollar question is ,what is the root cause of this violence against women, this undeclared war against women. And the reason happens to be the power tussle. Patriarchy has long been running on the fuel of subservience and domestication of women and now when ,women of this country are finally asserting themselves as individuals and in-turn breaking the shackles of patriarchy though still in tits & bits, patriarchy is threatened and men have subconsciously realized that if this is not nipped in the bud ,it will spread like wild fire and destroy the age old myth of supremacy of men over women . And men hate to share their power that too with women but men have chosen to live in a fool’s paradise for far too long now and need to come out of it and understand that women are creators and a world of equal rights and opportunities is all they seek. To be treated as a human being and not some object of pleasure is all they want, and no vision of paradise has been or would be complete without women.