Monday, June 28, 2010

WHEN A LIFE IS WORTH LESS THAN HONOUR


Honour killing..perhaps the most ironical phrase of the english language and the most shameful, brutal, heinous crime possible...

A girl was burnt alive for being in a relationship with a boy from a different caste..
A 19 year old girl and her boyfriend were bludgeoned with hammer and elecrocuted to death by her family in Delhi...
A young boy was killed for marrying a girl who belonged to the same gotra,his battered body was actually displayed in the village...
A 15 year old schoolboy and his girlfriend were killed in Greater Noida, by their own family members after they refused to end their affair...
Yes, honour-killing cases are rampant in most of the states of India, not only in India but also in other countries for that matter..
For the sake of the so-called 'izzat' in the society and to save the honour of the family,caste or religion, young men and women have been murdered by their own relatives and most shockingly, by their own parents in many of the cases..

I,being an agnostic,being completely against the caste system, find it incomprehensibly difficult to describe how shocked I was when I read those n number of cases.. How can a father kill his own daughter just for his family's reputation in the society? For me, the word called 'religion' does not exist,but it is considered to be above the life of an innocent human being for some people..A research paper by a Chandigarh based lawyer states that every year,over a 1000 people are killed in India in the name of honour.. And, on top of that,for every case that gets recorded, several others go unreported..

THE ROOT CAUSE

In villages, the main factors responsible are probably ignorance, superstitions and stereotyped views,their mentality and above all the Khap.. 
But if you think the main cause of honour killings is lack of education or the dictatorship of the khap, may be wrong..As a matter of fact, there have been many cases in areas like Delhi where the murderers were educated people from well-to-do families and the victims were, of course, their own children and family members..
If you think that caste-ism and orthodox attitude is responsible, you maybe wrong again..
Now, talking about the ultimate reason, well, obviously, a normal human being would never go to the extent of committing a crime as heinous as brutally killing someone close to him.. One of the most interesting aspect of the subject called psychology- crime and psychology- is probably the answer to this..
Every criminal commits the crime either for revenge or hatred or greed or insecurity..A thief or a robber kills for the greed of money, a rapist kills for lust, for sex.. All first degree murders are premeditated, i.e. they are planned, either for revenge or simply for hatred..
Now, when this feeling (of greed or revenge or hatred or insecurity or lust) overpowers an individual, it overtakes his conscience and he does not realize that its morally,socially, legally wrong and inhumane.. 
In case of honour killings, the main reason is perhaps insecurity- the fear of losing the so-called respect, reputation in the society.. the fear of not being able to follow the parampara (tradition).. its when this insecurity or this lust for honour and reputation overpowers him, he goes to the extent of taking away the life of his own son or daughter...

WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE

No matter what the reason is, such an act can never be justified.. It is something that needs to be stopped at any cost, one of the worst social evils existing in India..

Union Minister for Law and Justice, M Veerappa Moily had recently said that they would be coming up with a stricter provision in the law to stop honour killings.. But are amendments in laws enough? Will stricter laws be able to stop, or for that matter, control the rising rate of the number of honour killings?
All the people living in cities and metropolitans are bound to be aware of the fact that murder or manslaughter is a crime, it is against the law and they are bound to be punished for the same..In spite of this, there have been many cases in places like Delhi, Noida etc. 
Moreover, in certain villages, the gram-panchayat had announced to hang boys and girls until death for marrying a person from the same gotra.. In rural areas of Haryana and a few other states, people actually believe that only whores choose their own partners.. Although killing women for dowry, killing innocent people in the name of tradition, in the name of honour, is not considered to be a crime in the same region, but a death sentence is announced for marrying a person from a different caste or from the same gotra..

Now the question arises, even if amendments are made in the laws, even if stricter laws are made, would this put an end to this brutal killing?
Well, as long as these stone-hearted fanatics have their orthodox views on, as long as they feel that young girls are like a 'burden' to the family, as long as izzat and parampara would remain more important than the lives of their daughters and sons, no laws, no amendments would be able to stop this.. And where would the common people go, when even policemen in these areas support the rules by Khap panchayats? Aren't laws baseless and purposeless in a country where the law makers just comment and promise a stricter action and policemen support the same law breakers in the name of tradition and honour? 

First of all, a strict action must be taken against all those panchayats  who actually announce the murders of young men and women.. There must be a police force against the same, with a duty to arrest the people responsible for killing.. Even a five year old kid must be knowing that these murders are illegal according to the law, then why don't the Khap panchayats come to an end?  How the hell do they have the right to announce death sentence to a couple just for marrying in the same gotra? 

In villages, people actually grow up hearing such cases.. They actually believe that this is right.. Call it lack of education, call it lack of awareness, call it ignorance, call it the dictatorship of the khap for power.. But, something needs to be done about it, merely educating the people is not a solution.. Moreover, no matter what you do, you cannot convince the elders of these villages..They must be behind the bars, instead of having the authority to announce death sentences for the youth of the nation.. 

Secondly, the Indian society is certainly responsible for this fanaticism, this psychology.. Indians, in general, give a hell lot of importance to religions, caste and above all their honour and reputation..As always, I would like to state the way I feel that the existence of religions, and the inter-religion, inter-caste hatred is responsible for most of the social evils..
Its high time that people should realize that castes and religions should not be taken as ways to discriminate, that adult boys and girls have the right to marry the person of their choice, irrespective of the community or religion, that society, tradition, reputation, honour cannot be above the lives of innocent girls and boys..
At the end, nothing at all can be above humanity or human rights..

All I could do was to write this blog as a concerned citizen.. Its a request to all the readers.. the next time you read a news pertaining to honour killing, dont just say, "Bahut bura hua, kitni sharmnaak baat hai".. You need to take an action, you need to create awareness, you need to rise above things like castes, religions, communities etc. You need to do something in this direction, for the society, for the country you are a part of, for the sake of the lives of those fellow Indians who are being killed in the name of honour..

This is all I had to say, all kinda comments are welcome..

Sonia Bhatia
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11 comments:

Shanks said...

some times man feels himself above all authorities.
insaniyat is the ultimate religion.

good work :)

Eshan Bhatt said...

No law or no political personality can stop this.
Do u really think that the politicos, do really think about the common masses.
These so called “HONOR KILLINGS” are just morning news for them. Its we who have to do this. No education, no police nothing…….
Its just we the people, when people start shedding those crocked ideologies, that we are ever gonna find a solution. There are times when people do rise up to the occasion to bring justice to the diseased.
Why not now let the masses send uproar, to these people that such things will not be borne and hence should be condemned. Perhaps unity and care for others is what we lack in us. Where were the people when these inhuman acts occurred; at least someone-someone nearby would have heard the cries; someone could just try and prevent these perverts; they could at-least have caught the criminals.
And now we are ashamed when thess people exculpate themselves. wtf we have no right to be angry when we just didn’t stand up when we were needed.
Rather than mourning and blaming what can be done is to create a mass awareness, to prevent such things. MORAL upraising can be an excellent solution but all this would work only when we want to.
The question here is DO WE???????????
DO WE???????????DO WE???????????DO WE???????????DO WE???????????DO WE???????????DO WE???????????

Nice work Sonia

navnina said...

GREAT WORK!... I WAS WAITING FOR THIS BLOG FROM LONG TIME....AS EXPECTED IT IS WONDERFUL...MAST EK DUM!!THE knowledge u have gained to write this blog is amazing....

Sonia said...

@ everyone

thanks a lot :-)

@ eshan

no matter if its morning news for politicians or not, it must not be morning news for us.. we must try our level best to change the attitude of these people, their attitude, their thinking, their psychology..

@ nina
yeah, I was shell shocked to read all that.. n thats the reason why I wrote this :-)

esan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Eshan Bhatt said...

u might b correct in saying, that its not morning news for us; but what have we done against it.

sonia having 3-4 people against the act is not victory, its rather shameful, that only some are actually coming up to put their opinion.

whatever we think has no meaning if it doesnt convert to an action, all words in vain.
who the hell said "a pen is mightier than a sword", even though we discuss this issue, there was yet another (dis)honor killing today.
another mornin news for tomorrow.

rahul said...

Just saw while surfing net
Great blog!
but unfortunately, we really cannot find a solution to this.. i agree psychology is the root cause

Sonia said...

@ eshan
although the number of comments here might be less... but I have received quite a lot of comments otherwise..
Yes, I was a lil disappointed bcoz of the no of visits after i posted this.. When I write a semester blog or a romantic blog, the no of visits are much more..

Well, we need to convince people.. change their attitude.. which is actually the root cause.. this was my first step towards it.. trust me when i say this, there are some well educated people among my friends (engineering students) who used to think that marrying a person from the same gotra is a sin.. at least after reading this they would have realized that no such thing like gotra, caste, religion, community is above humanity

@ rahul

thanks

ankur said...

mind is responsible for everything, so it includes this case also. In my personal opinion, the way one is brought up determines they way we think. we all need respect in society but there are people who are scared from society and hence they take such decisions. Whos fault is it then...society or the concerned person ?

For eg. Even being in upper middle class society my neighbours had to hear a lot from society. And it actually disturbs one mentally..so..i dont think one can decide whose fault it is..

Not that i am supporting honour killing. But its just that people react in a senseless manner to the pressure they face. Yes, killing people is not a solution, but these people are also right in their fear. SOCIETY DOES impact your life.

Indian tradition has its own advantages and disadvantages. And yes it is one of the disadvantage that is coming up because now a days the youth shouts back and is adamant and less adjusting. Again, not possible to choose who is right, and who is wrong.

I am not in support of honour killing, but in my opinion, the only way to remove this is that one should have the ability to compromise. If one is not adamant on his/her decisions, it is possible to find a middle way out, without any harm to anyone.

Good topic.

Sonia said...

I am shocked like anything to read ur comment,Ankur...

I cant believe it...

" it is one of the disadvantage that is coming up because now a days the youth shouts back and is adamant and less adjusting."
OMG !!! What do you feel is morally, socially, or ethically wrong if a girl wants to marry a guy from the same gotra or from a different caste.. You are actually justifying the youth of our country being killed for the sake of honour n society..

I know it is the psychology n mindset thats responsible..
but for people who think that its not possible to choose what is wrong n what is right, I guess that was the only reason I wrote this blog.. n I just realized I failed to convey the message, Eshan is right... It was a failed attempt at creating awareness for a good cause.. I am disappointed..

Amit Purohit (The Lone Soldier) said...

thanks for reading my blog: My Infatuation Love Demystifed.

I found your post quite interesting spl the linking of news with which the narration begins.

do read my latest story

http://shayar4u4ever.blogspot.in/2012/04/cuckoo-behind-kolaveri.html

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