Women Empowerment sans Victimisation of Men


Woh jail ki hawa kha raha hai.Maine use jhute dowry kes mei andar karwaya hai.”I was aghast to hear this coming from the mouth of a young woman whom I was meeting for the first time. She, just a casual acquaintance, had no qualms in telling me that her husband was cooling his heels in a jail. Rather she was boasting of getting him implicated in a false dowry case to teach him a lesson. What a blatant misuse of the dowry act, I mused.

The Dowry Act is a progressive piece of legislation meant to protect women against dowry harassment, but to use it as a weapon to settle any marital discord is unjust and deplorable. There are instances when the husband, along with his family is subject to reverse exploitation from the girl’s side. In my own close relations, the family of my paternal aunt suffered tremendously because of a false dowry case slapped against them. It was a case of disharmony between my cousin and his wife but, the entire family, not just my cousin but also his parents were dragged in to a false dowry case.

It is indeed sad that another Act meant to shield women against sexual harassment sometimes becomes a handy tool in the hands of crafty women to exploit men. Agreed, many men are vicious but not all women are virtuous. There are cases when the relation between two consenting adults turns sour and the woman charges the man of rape. Is it fair?

Talking about the #Me Too movement, which has given opportunity to the women to air their pent up pain from the past abuse, should be lauded. I am glad that many successful women have taken lead to come out in the open to demand justice. They have taken up the challenge to expose the black sheep, fight their predators who had violated them in the past, thus instilling a sense of fear in the hearts and minds of wrong doers. The lecherous men, who try to take advantage of their position, misbehave with women with a sense of entitlement, must be ‘named and shamed’ but what if an innocent man is framed. A man is deemed to be a criminal the moment a female points a finger towards him. Any wrong allegation or a false accusation can wreck the reputation and career of the innocent man, affecting not just his life but the lives of all his kin as well.

The # Me too movement is a revolt against predatory culture, a clear and strong message to the wayward men to mend their ways. It is capable of triggering a positive change in the behaviour of men at work place and can go a long way in creating an enabling, healthy environment for women to work but it will get derailed if it is used for male bashing in general.

While aiming at women empowerment, the laws that protect women should be handled with care and caution. These should not be used to falsely implicate men to settle any score. The motto should be: No woman should be harassed at home or at work place, but let no innocent man be framed.

(Published in Chandigarh Tribune on March 14, 2019 )



8 Replies to “Women Empowerment sans Victimisation of Men”

  1. I can’t help but agree completely with the points you’ve made. Agreed a lot of laws are made to safeguard women but their misuse is probably just as rampant as their no use by actual victims.

    Also, adding another thought to the whole issue: While we speak vehemently and passionately against sexual exploitation of women, there are no such laws for men, who are just as prone to similar exploitation at places of work and education. The laws against sexual harassment and abuse are very jaundice eyed and assume that the victim will be female. What’s more alarming is sometimes, a Male victim, who is just as traumatised, is scared to seek legal aid or is falsely accused of being the perpetrator by the actual wrongdoer.
    Feminism has always stood for gender equality but if it empowers one gender at the cost of exploitating the other, it’s just as bad as patriarchy.

    1. A brilliant ,unbiased insight into the subject !A mature response coming from a girl of your age! Impressed !

      Yes, definitely there is rampant misuse of the women empowering Acts but regarding the second issue that you have raised in the subsequent paragraph, how widespread is the exploitation of men , I am not sure.

  2. Very thought provoking article Rama, your concern.#MeToo or dowry act is genuine in itself, but like every good medicine,it has bad reaction too as mentioned by U. If we want real good effects of its implications,we need good governance and honest judiciary which unfortunately we lack and the has become like giving a knife in the hands of monkey

    1. It is a matter of concern that many actual victims may not be coming forward but there are instances galore of the abuse of women empowerment.

  3. Beautifully written.
    I am completely agree with each point made by you. Law is made to help women but women are misusing law so that they can teach lesson to men. But in many rural areas we see lot of cases of harassment & dowery and there is no awareness regarding law which are made for helping women.
    Every case should be handle with care and treat both men and women innocent and then decide.

    1. Here is a lawyer speaking. Yes, there is misuse on one hand but on other hand actual victims may not be coming forward due to lack of awareness,poverty or social issues.

  4. Rama it really sends shivers in my spine when one notices number of girls after marriage are thinking & planning how to punish their husbands & in-laws.
    The laws made for the welfare & security of naive girls have become a handy tool in the hands of these artful girls to garner wealth of in-laws and Alimony from husband.
    They even leave their jobs to enjoy free fund luxuries It’s really disturbing.
    It’s a growing menance in the society.
    Rama agreed no woman should be harassed at home and work place but no innocent man be framed

  5. Absolutely , a disturbing trend to harass men and also in-laws. It is nothing but misuse of the act meant to protect women. This ought to stop.
    Thank you so much for reading and posting your valuable comment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Verified by MonsterInsights