In what has been an age old testament regarding the sensibilities of the genders, we have a preset imageries of the Sterner and the Fairer Sex, leading to the sediment of a quasi – rigid quasi – stubborn mindset which is stereotypically ubiquitous in nature, definition and essence, wherein the Sterner Sex, the Male Gender has been termed the Protector, the Provider and the Adventurer while the Fairer Sex, the Female Gender has been termed the object of Beauty, the Home Maker and the Life Giver. Men feel great providing and feel like God when they protect someone, especially a Woman and in this process often forget that they too are humans who can need someone. They feel a big problem discussing their problems and feel low doing so, forgetting the fact that they too are humans, females, on the other hand, find it quite natural to discuss their problems and also do not feel low doing so. This process combined over years of practice has led to a seemingly true and apparently explained perception that Women need a lot of protection and that protection has to come from a Man, wherein it led to the establishment of the euphoria mirrored in the statement, “Men’s Duties and Women’s Rights” which has been very instrumental in the design of the social norms and the legal design as well and Men have been highly instrumental in designing this euphoria. Over years of turmoil and toil this euphoria caught such an attention that the need or requirement for its conjugate euphoria, mirrored in the statement, “Men’s Rights and Women’s Duties” has either been never been felt or if ever sounded, was over – sounded and over – shadowed by the first one.
So ubiquitously it has been assumed that Men are guilty of crimes and Women, even if criminals are so due to some COMPELLING REASON, this has led to men being cornered over centuries so much so that, they are now viewed with suspicion and biased assumption, not only by Women folks, but by other Men as well. It is not uncommon to see that when a woman is embroiled in some crime, men and women, in general, empathizing with the culprit and struggling to find reasons leading to her metamorphosis to a criminal. On the other hand, the same case being with a Man, not only is he subjected to condemnation, prosecution and punishment shall also follow as package bonuses. That does not mean that he is allowed to commit crimes and should be encouraged to do so. Crime is Crime and is independent of gender. If a Man commits a murder or if a Woman commits a murder, it results in the same after – effect, a life is snuffed and denied existence. Then why do we have different standards set for treatment with the criminal based on gender. The man committing the murder is viewed as a criminal while a woman doing the same is viewed as an object of sympathy.
We do have such standards, for as they say that the society is male – dominated and if it is actually so that the society is male – dominated, then those men are spineless men who have set such standards. A standard suffering from an undue sentimental balance towards a particular gender which associates different assumptions for Men and Women. Very recently we had a landmark judgment from the Honorable High Court of Delhi expanding the ambit of the Domestic Violence Act 2005 to female partners engaged in live – in relationships with their male partners. This article is not meant to condemn the particular judgment, but the saddening fact is an unexplained assumption as cited in the judgment, “the court said that in a case of women having live-in relationships with a man it could be fairly assumed that the relationship was initiated by the man.” The question here that irks the rational mind is that, is starting any relationship solely dependent on only one of the partners or is it that when the relationship is sweet, both the partners cherish the fruit and when it goes awry only the Man is borne to bear the brunt of the fallacy. Did we give considerable weight age to other possibilities that the relationship was started mutually or the Man was forced into the relationship keeping in view the protection laws that exist in case the relation does not work and in that case a monetary relief from the Man to the Woman will be on its way?
Further points of gravitational significance in the judgment are “since an assumption can fairly be drawn that a live-in relationship is invariably initiated and perpetuated by the male” and “the court should also not be impervious to social stigma which always sticks to women and not to the men.” If we are going to have cases to be decided on such biased and preset assumptions then probably we can do away with the legal process and decide the cases arbitrarily because anyways Men are going to suffer from such assumptions wherein they are going to be denied fair and impartial justice and will be continued to be tried under loosely drafted laws prepared with a mindset against the principles of natural justice. Such judgments are just an addition to the growing mistrust amongst men towards the judiciary as has been recently highlighted with gruesome incidents like Amit Budhiraja of Infosys Technologies murdering his wife and subsequently committing suicide, citing marital problems as the reason for the extreme decision and its consequent implementation to reality and the more recent dual suicide by a techie couple in Hyderabad, again marital problems being at the core of the reason for the snuffing away of two young lives. These persons were of loose persona who preferred ending their lives rather than giving a fight against the adversities and showing the moral and courage to stride against the tide, but on a judgmental and analytical benchmark of post – incidental synopsis the height of frustration and apathy towards the government and the society to solve marital problems also comes to the fore decorated with another age – old assumption that, “Which marriage does not have problems?” If that be so and that being true, is it fair and just enough to allow crimes and murders to be the final solutions in such cases?
Amit Budhiraja was working with Infosys Technologies for nine years, elucidating his stable nature, took the extreme decision of killing his wife and committing suicide subsequently when his wife, allegedly, threatened him of a false dowry case, when he had come to know of an alleged affair of hers with a colleague of hers. He was well aware that with a biased society defined and ruled by spineless men, who prefer believing a woman’s tears more than irrefutable evidence, he had few chances to safeguard himself and his parents, once his wife would start crying TORTURE and DOWRY. It would be very hard for him to prove his innocence and an unnecessary legal battle of 5 – 6 years would ensue, stripping him off his finances. Day in and day out we see more and more such cases, where Men are denied a chance to even defend themselves, let alone imparting justice to them. Let us hope the civil society and the government and the judiciary wakes up to this alarming trend of growing distrust amongst suffering men for the cornering they are offered, leading them to turn to extremist and take the law into their hands, and does something to curb the menace. The article does not intend to justify the crimes committed by men, so what it has been fueled by the distrust and apathy, meted out to them, nourished by the system and the society, there has to be severe condemnation of crime, in order to curb it, but the society needs to wake up to this alarming trend and start to think of the conjugate euphoria described above and referred again here, “Men’s Rights and Women’s Duties”. Are those spineless men who believe that the society is male dominated ready to make an effort to institute the conjugate euphoria for suffering Men?