Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

An Open Letter to Young Tamil Men by Niveda Anandan

[Link shared by Sundar]

Dear Young Tamil Men,

Remember this conversation?

“So what do you think of her?” says one young Tamil man to another.

“She’s banging. But yo, I don’t think she’s the type you’d want to marry,” his friend replies.

“What do you mean? You heard something bad about her?” The young Tamil man presses his friend anxiously but dreads hearing more.

“Well, how do I put this lightly? Let’s just say she’s been around. Her ex told me some messed up things about her. I would stay away from that girl if I were you.”

….

Let me tell you something that may boggle your mind. Tamil men – you may have to sit down for this one. …. Just as you experience complete sexual liberation, we wish to have the same without being judged and ridiculed as “not marriage material”. We are not objects to be judged as “easy” or “used” and are disgusted that you would even use these terms to describe us.

[Click to read the article]

The comments are as expected.  I would like to respond to just one sentence in this comment:

 “…. Yes, Women do get sexual urge but you must know to handle it (applies to men also), perhaps that is why Man is endowed with 6th sense. we aren’t Dogs … this stupid, immature article enlights SEX as epitome of feminist liberty

– Patriarchy can’t survive without controlling women’s sexuality – that is controlling with who, when and why women have sex is at the root of most of the other controls, like how women dress, marry, love, socialise, work, walk, earn, spend, sleep, laugh, talk, smile, look, eat, drink, have children, and which children, including which children they can keep and which they must abandon.Women having a choice in marrying or not marrying means also having a choice in having sex or children or a social life, a partner (or more), self reliance etc without being ‘given away in marriage’. [Marriages are sold to Indian women in a glossy cover…?]

Here’s how it works: Patriarchy decides, Who (- a wedded husband, no matter what the woman feels about him), When (after she is ‘given to him in marriage’, irrespective of whether the woman has consented and is a minor, if he is her husband, in most Patriarchal societies he can rape her), Why (Because a woman is not allowed sex before she is married, or after she is widowed). So is women’s liberation possible without Sexual Liberation?
Please consider – how likely are you to hear opinions like this for men?

Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

[Link shared by FakeIndian Bahu]

“Girls are morally and socially bound not to indulge in sexual intercourse before a proper marriage, and if they do so, it would be to their peril and they cannot be heard crying later that it was rape,” reads a 19-page order passed by Additional Sessions Judge

Fast track court judge’s shocking justice, says ‘no pre-marital sex before marriage’ – NewsX

Related Posts:

Why do some ‘rape victims’ fight to get married to their ‘rapists’?

Couples who have premarital sex to be considered ‘married,’ says HC

“Instituting the idea of marital rape raises the specter of a man going for long periods without sex even though he’s married!”

“There is so little conversation about a woman’s desire for sex that a lot of people simply assume it doesn’t exist.”

How illegal bans on Valentine’s day and birthday parties are connected with dowry deaths and sex selection.

Indian loses online bid to buy Brazilian student’s virginity

Here’s why I think the society should not obsess over a woman’s virginity.

“let me ask – how many girls in city remain pure till marriage ?”

Making Marital Rape a legal offence is the fastest way to make it clear that Rape means forced sex, not lost Virginity or Honor.

Five rapists in Patna want to marry gangrape victim.

134 thoughts on “Girls morally bound not to have sex before marriage, says fast track court judge

  1. While I agree with the premise of the article, I feel like controlling pre-marital sexuality seems like a gender neutral thing. Apparently we thrive upon thrusting two sexually inexperienced people into this twisted thing called arranged marriage when they’re expected to immediately sleep with each other, only for the purpose of procreation. It is so very typical of a society that does not celebrate individuality. You must only have sex when you’re someone’s wife/husband. How about treating sex for what it is – a physical need?

    In any case, as a society, we must stop talking about whom to have sex with, when to have sex and focus on the all critical aspects of sex such as safety, birth control etc and stop letting kids get all their sex ed from their friends and porn.

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    • In principle, it could be gender-neutral. In practice, it’s not. Women who choose to have sex before marriage are MUCH more likely to be critiqued and judged by it than men are, and the judgements will be much harsher.

      The risks of sex are overstated. In reality, when sexual-educators say we must teach the young about all the dangers of sex, they are motivated by puritanical emotions as much as by health-concerns. It is true, of course, that having sex can lead to pregnancy and to STDs, but reality is that both risks are low with even simple precautions. Yet a lot of sex-education focuses almost exclusively on the risks.

      Imagine if you where teaching people about cooking and food — and you spent 95% of the time talking about the RISKS: You can get sick from pathogens in the food, there’s pesticides in much fruit, there’s heavy metals in tuna, harmful bacteria grows in meats that are too old or have been inadequately cooled and so on. All of this is TRUE — but a cooking-class isn’t going to spend 95% of the time focusing on danger only. Reality is that by taking a few reasonable precautions, cooking and eating food and sharing it with friends, is a safe and enjoyable activity.

      The same is true for sex.

      Liked by 1 person

      • To claim that the risk of pregnancy is low “even with simple precautions” is a very ignorant and dangerous statement to make.

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    • Also I see that there is a practice, After the wedding the elders/parents get help from astrologers, find out an auspicious day and arrange for the couple to “do it”. How could anyone tell 2 grown ups when to F***. How would a 3rd person know if I am ready to sleep with anyone? And they also decorate the room, bed and stuff, looks like sex is pretty much celebrated here. I do not understand the double standards.

      Is it like, its alright as long as you are f***ing the one picked by them, at the nominated time, with the whole bunch of relatives outside the room – knowing you are gonna do it? Nobody protests this?

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    • “How about treating sex for what it is – a physical need?”

      How about treating sex for what it really is and what its purpose was made out to be by nature? The reason sex is a physical need is because it is nature’s way of ensuring procreation and therefore survival of the species. Birth control is not natural – especially the contraceptives that mess around with the hormones of a woman to stop pregnancy. There is this modern refrain that “Sex is natural” which is used to go against traditional practices of limiting sex within marriage and to encourage sexual activity. Well, OK, sex is indeed natural, but so is its naturally intended result which is pregnancy and new life – why are you using unnatural means to stop the natural result of sex? We hear that it is unhealthy to refrain from sex – ok, but its not unhealthy to use contraceptives to stop sex’s natural result – pregnancy? Hypocrisy and ignorance at its best. If you are all for sexual activity without interfering with its natural result, you have a case, not otherwise. If sex to you is a physical need, then its result, pregnancy, has to be a physical need too – so follow through on both without promoting birth control and your point will make sense. You can’t have your cake and eat it too.The only natural form of birth-control is abstinence.

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      • I guess it’s upto the people involved to decide how they view sex and contraception – meaning, consenting adults can decide for themselves. Those who would rather have sex only for procreation have the right to choose to do so.

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  2. Actually this is an interesting remark by the judge. For sure, it was not for him to make the “moral” remark since it’s not a court’s job to judge morality. If anything, it’s only constitutional morality that is important. But it seems that this was the full remark:

    “Girls are morally and socially bound not to indulge in sexual intercourse before a proper marriage, and if they do so, it would be to their peril and they cannot be heard crying later that it was rape”

    Reading the full article, he seems to be saying it’s not illegal to have sex before marriage and that a woman above 18 is fully capable of recognizing that it’s risky and that a man might not marry her. This actually needs to be said (not the morality party of course).

    I really really wish he hand’t brought up the issue of morality because from the looks of it, this is actually a very sensible ruling and speaks to the huge number of cases of rape that are filed by women who have sex voluntarily and then file for rape when the man refuses to marry them. They don’t even pretend that they were sexually forced. It’s as if they’ve redefined the meaning of rape entirely!

    But none of that excuses the illogical “morality” remarks. Either something is legal or not. The court has to only judge on that basis. Nothing else matters.

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    • You know, I read the article too- and to me *only* the morality bit was a problem.
      Moral ‘binding’ has no legal sanction anyway- so it smacks of patronising BS.

      The rest of his statement I have no issue with- have premarital sex at your own ‘peril- even if ‘he seems to think not getting married to somebody you slept with counts as peril !
      And I COMPLETELY agree with this bit-
      “…conveniently fabricate the story of kidnap and rape in order to escape harsh treatment from parents. It is these false cases which tend to trivialise the offence of rape and undermine its gravity.”

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      • @Lavanya
        Exchanging sex for something like marriage is transactional.
        Thus the refusal to marry after sex is more accurately fraud, not rape.
        It is the trust of the woman which is violated here.

        The crucial question here is whether we want our legal system to treat violations of personal trust, within the context of relationships, as punishable crimes.

        If your answer is yes (as it seems to be), then I propose we debate on how long jail terms should be for these ‘crimes’ of ‘breaking trust’-
        -Not marrying a woman you had sex with (after promising to)
        -Cheating on your spouse with another sexual partner
        -Having sex with your boyfriend or girlfriend and thus breaking your parent’s trust

        Because you cannot be selective about what you want to punish and not punish- when it comes to ‘cheating’ in your relationships.

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        • I think the courts should be extremely careful with accepting breaches of trust as legally relevant. Certainly, if someone made a clear promise, and then broke it, they should be liable for any direct economical consequences arising from this — but that is just standard contract-law.

          But I think promises and intentions are two different things. When people are engaged, they are *intending* to marry, but they haven’t promised it, in the sense that either of them should be punished if they change their mind. In fact the entire point of having a period of engagement prior to marriage is to give the couple a bit of time to make sure that’s really what they want. (if they where really 100% certain, then they might just as well have married right away)

          There’s never any criminal punishment for breaking a contract. Breaking a contract is a civil matter, not a criminal one. The distinction is important. When you break a contract, a court may order you to pay what it cost to rectify the problems caused by your lack of fulfillment, but they will never send you to jail. Jail-sentences are handed out ONLY for breaches of the criminal code of a country, which contains nothing about contracts.

          Thus even if you accepted promises of marriage as legally binding (which I don’t think we should!) you would never get jail for breaking that promise, the worst that could happen to you is that a judge would tell you you need to pay for the direct economic damage resulting from it. For example, expenses relating to the wedding might need to be covered.

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    • Bhagwad, I would like you to define the meaning of rape here. Shouldn’t false pretense be a factor in determining the legality of a rape ?

      Being a woman, I should have the complete right to make a choice that – ‘I will only have sex with the person I’m married to/or will be married to.’ I personally don’t care what choices other people make.

      But if I make that choice for myself and then have sex with someone who promises to marry me, only because of that promise, then shouldn’t such a man be charged with rape if he later refuses to marry me ? Obviously, he knew my personal choice and used it to have sex with me which wouldn’t have happened otherwise.

      Your comment suggests that a woman (or even a man) CANNOT make a personal choice to have sex only with the person they are married to (or going to be married to).

      Secondly, I may have another personal choice not to have sex with a married man. I may then find a man who gets to know my opinion and hides the fact that he is already married. We then have sex (because I don’t know that he is actually married). Shouldn’t I press charges against him when I get to know he willingly lied to me about his marital status in order to get my consent for sex ?

      Taking my examples to even more ridiculous levels, I may choose to have sex with only a person who is an Indian citizen. Even though it may seem ridiculous, I am completely free to make such a choice. So, if I have sex with a man who is not an Indian citizen but feigns it just to get my consent, shouldn’t he be charged ?

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      • That’s not rape, that’s cheating. We can definitely have laws against cheating and the lying person can be charged with inducing emotional trauma and cheating, but it must never be equated with rape. This kind of twisted thinking is also one reason why rape laws are not taken seriously. The definition of rape is quite straightforward: physically forced sex, or apparent consensual sex consented to because of the fear of repercussions. Marriage and cheating and promises, etc, have no place in this and MUST be kept separate from rape cases.

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      • It’s a complicated issue. As Fem has pointed out before me, rape specifically refers to forced sex or sex where consent itself is not married. A decision to have sex only with a spouse might be out of your control. For example, a couple promises to marry each other and have sex. Then they fall out of love. Happens all the time. It’s the way of life. Should they now be forced to get married after they realize they’re not right for each other just because they’ve had sex? Should break ups become illegal?

        I’m even against classifying it as “cheating”. Like I said, couples break up all the time for dozens of reasons. One moves away, they fall in love with someone else, they find out something about the other person they didn’t like, sexual incompatibility, or whatever. Making it illegal is I think absurd. We just can’t do it.

        Which brings us to the cases where a person deliberately lies and promises marriage in order to have sex with the other person. To me, this is the only case that even remotely comes close the “cheating” thing. But then…we have the absurd situation of a court deciding why a person broke up and what their motives were. I really don’t think this is something the courts should bother with. In my opinion, matters of the heart and relationships should be beyond the purview of the court.

        The problem arises I think because women in India is taught that virginity and sex is something “precious”. That if they lose their virginity to the wrong person without getting something in return (marriage), then some irreparable harm has been done. That a woman can’t have sex just for the pleasure of having sex itself. To me, this is the root of the problem.

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        • //For example, a couple promises to marry each other and have sex. Then they fall out of love. Happens all the time. It’s the way of life. Should they now be forced to get married after they realize they’re not right for each other just because they’ve had sex? Should break ups become illegal?//

          It’s more like a man promises to marry a woman (who sees getting married as the sole purpose of her life, right or wrong, that’s the way she feels) and hence would only ‘give’ sex/her virginity to a husband or a future husband – I think she has a right to do that. Her virginity, her belief, her decision. So if the guy uses vermillion or garland or mangalsutra only to assure her that he is either marrying her or will marry her in return of sex/virginity, then I think that is cheating.

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        • Bhagwad, I agree with you for the most part as I too don’t think people changing their minds about commitment after having sex should be considered as cheating, but in this case, there was a faux marriage with mangalsutra and what not. Hence, it’s cheating.

          You are completely right about the root of the problem being the perception that women have no sexual autonomy outside a marriage.

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      • @IHM

        I don’t know…I’m still uncomfortable with the idea. I guess my issue is with the words “give” sex. What is being given? The words “cheating” imply stealing. And I don’t see anything being stolen here. When two people have sex, I have only one presumption – they want to have sex. Like shaking hands.

        Now there might be someone who only wants to shake hands with a future spouse. And someone could pretend to marry them and shake hands with them. Can such a person bring a court case for cheating? I mean…there has to be some limit to what we can call cheating and what we can’t. Otherwise there are thousands of things in the world people can go to court over.

        In my opinion, sex just means two people want to have sex. The reasons don’t matter. Neither is “giving” anything to the other. In fact, I would say that both are “taking”!

        I don’t know of any other civilized country that has this odd definition of cheating. Usually cheating only refers to money or actual assets. I’m not at all comfortable with defining cheating in such a broad manner.

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        • Bhagwad, though I didn’t use words such as ‘giving’ or ‘taking’ with respect to having sex in my comment, I’ll still reply to what you said.

          Maybe you didn’t know but even consensual sex is NOT ALWAYS mutually enjoyable by both the partners. There are instances when one of the partners (more often the female as per my knowledge) agrees to participate in sex merely because the other wants to. It is solely for the sake of the other’s pleasure. Mind you, the active partner does not always force himself on the other (very common among married couples) but the passive partner participates out of so called love to satisfy the other. There is no mutual “taking” involved in such cases.

          One of my closest friends was never too willing for sex with her partner. But she consented to sex just because she didn’t want to disappoint him. Not that he forced sex on her or that she got hurt physically or emotionally by the sex. But still, she wasn’t “taking” anything from it.

          And NOT ALWAYS two people have sex just because they want it. A prostitute has sex in return for the money she gets. So, the reason IS important. That doesn’t mean one can forcefully have sex with a prostitute. But if one has sex with a prostitute and then refuses to pay her, will it be not cheating ? The reason here is money, and it can be something else in another case. But sex didn’t happen just because both partners wanted to.

          And no, I don’t have any morals attached to virginity or sex as far as I’m concerned. But still, its my choice to have sex with someone whom I marry. You can call me stupid, but being stupid is not illegal. Is it ?

          And finally, you said “getting something in return (marriage)” which is an absurd statement and a contradiction to your own logic about sex. How can marriage be something that is ‘given’ or ‘taken’ ? Shouldn’t the two partners be equally involved in a marriage ?

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      • @Lavanya

        I’m perfectly willing to admit that sex need not always be physically enjoyable. But nevertheless, it happens because two people want to. By definition if consent is obtained and if it’s not invalid consent, the two people “want” to go ahead – for whatever reason. The girl may not want it for physical pleasure. But she then “wants” it to make her partner happy. Either way, she “wants” to. In this case, what the girl “takes” is the pleasure of her partner. The specific pleasure is not defined as physical. My point is just that it happens because both parties want to do it.

        I fully agree that you have every right to want to have sex only with a married person. I’m just saying that those wants need not always come true – like in my example of a couple breaking up afterwards. And yes it’s also possible for a man to lie about his marital status and have sex with a woman. I’m just hesitant to define that as “cheating” because it’s a question of “What was the person cheated out of”? Which goes into the question of why they had sex in the first place. And my contention is that sex happens because both people want it to happen.

        Of course you’re right when you say that a prostitute can file a case of cheating if she was refused payment after sex. But I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s a specific case of money – no different from a person not paying the bill in a restaurant. The crime is not that the person ate at the restaurant, but that they didn’t pay the bill which is a financial contractual obligation. Very different from mere “promises”.

        I guess what I’m saying is that in the absence of an explicit or implicit legal contract (usually applying only to money), I don’t like to call something “cheating”. Words and “promises” shouldn’t count for anything in a law and evidence based society. Unless it’s in writing, I don’t believe any legal obligation exists on anyone.

        Several unfortunate things happen on the basis of spoken “promises” but can’t be prosecuted in law. If A gives money to B without any documentation and only on the “promise” of returning it, A cannot file a case against B in court. B might be in the wrong. B might be a jerk. But B is not a criminal in the eyes of the law.

        Do you understand my meaning? I’m not saying that a guy who lies to a woman is doing a good thing. Quite the contrary. But I’m saying it doesn’t make him a criminal without any formal contract beforehand.

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        • Bhagwad, your description of ‘want’ is rather flawed. Next we will have people using your logic to a ridiculous extent.

          Suppose a girl is raped while a gun is pointed to her head. Obviously, the victim will offer little or no physical resistance due to fear of being killed. Now, will you say she ‘wanted’ to have sex (be raped) in order to ‘get’ the security and surety of remaining alive ? By your logic, after all, she will be ‘getting’ the surety of remaining alive by offering no resistance. Or will you say she ‘wants’ it to escape death ? Do you understand now ?

          Satish, please read my comments again. I never said other people should be bound by my choice. In fact, I clearly said that I should have the liberty to exercise my choice without being cheated for it.

          Here, I would like to know what you people think when a person is raped (or has sex) by an impostor. Like for example, a person who has sex with a female under a false impression of being her partner.

          Another example. What if, suppose, a person knowingly fakes himself as a doctor and goes on to intimately examine a female patient. In such case, there will be consent from the female (to get intimately examined) and there wouldn’t be any monetary loss to her too. Then would it be called cheating or will the accused just be called as a flawed human being ?

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        • @Lavinya: “What if, suppose, a person knowingly fakes himself as a doctor and goes on to intimately examine a female patient.” I hope you are aware that impersonating a doctor is a serious crime and is illegal, Never mind Munna Bhai. But still, not rape.

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        • In marriage women buy peace by consenting sex. Many studies in India have shown married men create big scene when denied sex just the fear that man will take it outside the bedroom and shame the woman, many women consent sex, there is no sense of pleasing the partner for her but her own survival in peace.

          Now coming to the unwritten word, that is what the colonists did to the native, “The land doesn’t belong to you because you never had a written document thus I take it.” Now that is what is being to done to tribals in India and other places in the world.

          So the written word and it’s unwritten consequences are two very different issues. Cheating by definition is also beyond monetary exchange there should be no doubt about it.
          Peace,
          Desi Girl

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      • Lavanya, I’m afraid I do not agree with you here. You might have a personal preference to have sex only with the person you are married to/going to be married to, but other people are not bound by your personal choice. Personal preferences are not legally binding decrees. People’s feelings change all the time. It’s not just the guy…even you might end up changing your mind about marrying someone after having sex with them. Would you want the freedom to change your mind or would you want to be held legally liable simply for falling out of love?

        Even if it turns out that the guy’s promise to marry you was made with “malicious aforethought”, it would still not be a crime (in my opinion) as the fact that you had sex does not diminish you in any way. If you are really serious about your personal choice and you want to lose your virginity only to the person you are going to marry, then you would probably need to consult a lawyer and get your partner’s promise of marriage legally documented before you have sex. Even then, I would presume that the other person will be liable for breach of promise, not for rape.

        My point of view is that I can have a hundred different pre-conditions that I expect my partner to satisfy before we have sex, but the onus lies on me to ensure that my personal preferences are met. If I cannot ensure that, then I need to go into the relationship with open eyes with the understanding that my personal preferences are just my personal preferences and need not always be respected by the other person. It might make the other person a flawed human being, but it would not make them a criminal.

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      • @Lavanya

        The use of force in our society is a very special case. It invalidates everything else. This is an accepted basic principle of modern civilization. Physical force, financial threats, or threats of force against a person or their loved ones. These are strict no nos. They cannot be used to arrive at a valid definition of “want’. Because the basic assumption is that something is being “forced” on them via physical means. Courts all over the world have time and again reinforced this basic principle.

        Legal “harm” can only occur when something is physical, or financial, or a violation of property in general. We can debate about whether or not physical force should receive special status. But it does and we all accept it at a basic level.

        If you have an example of “want’ without physical force that seems wrong to you, I’ll be happy to hear it. Otherwise, the use of force or threats thereof automatically negates everything else.

        Let me try and show you why taking a person to court for not meeting your preference of a sexual partner seems absurd to me. Say there is a girl who says “I only want to fall in love with a person of my caste”. I’m sure you’ll agree that this is her prerogative no matter how stupid. It’s her mind. Her choice.

        Now someone comes to her and pretends to belong to her caste. They fall in love. They do not have sex. But the damage is done. She’s fallen in love with someone due to a misrepresentation on the part of the man. Question – do you think she can take him to court? According to you, the answer is yes, she can. Whereas I feel she cannot.

        If you say that “nothing happened” because of the lack of a physical relationship, my point is that the presence of a physical relationship per se is not a divine event. It means as little (or as much) as falling in love depending on the person.

        You’ve also given an example of a person pretending to be a doctor. Being a doctor is a verifiable academic qualification. And it’s in place to prevent quacks from harming the health of people. Note, actual health. There is a very real physical implication here. It’s not moral. It’s a very concrete physical danger for someone to pretend to be doctor when in fact they are not. Forget about intimately examining a female patient. Pretending to be a doctor for any purpose is illegal! The illegality does not become compounded just because he “intimately examines” a patient.

        This is true for any other profession. Construction. Banking, and what not. It’s in place not for moral reasons but to prevent real physical and financial harm. Don’t you agree?

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      • @Lavanya

        I might also add that sex due to impersonation is a very clear case of non consent. If a man pretends to be a woman’s husband (or boyfriend or whatever) and has sex with her, it’s obvious that she has not given consent to having sex with that particular person. She’s consented to sex with her husband and the husband and the impersonator are two very different people.

        But finding out that someone is of a different caste or finding out that a person is married do not change the person itself. Consent when given in these cases is given for these specific individuals alone. The person doesn’t change and consent doesn’t become invalid if the woman suddenly finds out certain facts that she didn’t know before.

        So impersonation goes right to the very heart of the definition of rape – namely valid consent itself.

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        • Bhagwad – spot on! Actually, i first commented saying its cheating, but reading your comments, made me rethink. You are so right and i find myself nodding my head at each sentence of yours🙂

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        • Bhagwad, merely twisting the words will not change what you have already said. If you associate ‘want’ with a sexual act, then it applies to all types of wants. Be it the want of pleasure or want of life. No one forces a wife to ‘want’ to make her husband happy by consenting to sex. Similarly, no one forces a woman to ‘want’ to remain alive if threatened by physical force. If you talk of ‘want’ it is voluntary in every case be it for pleasure or for life.

          And instead of ‘giving’ or ‘taking’ sex is about pleasure or fear. A person has sex because of the physical or emotional pleasure he or she derives out of it. OR a person has sex out of fear. Either fear of death/physical harm or fear of the emotional/social effects (like in the case of a wife reluctantly consenting to sex with her husband). It is pleasure OR fear. Not ‘give’ or ‘take’.

          As for my example of a person impersonating a doctor is concerned, I didn’t mean that the impostor is actually working as a doctor. I was merely suggesting what if a person impersonates as a doctor only to violate the personal space of a patient for voyeuristic reasons. Nothing more. And yes, the patient doesn’t undergo any physical or monetary trauma by such voyeurism too. So isn’t that an offense ?

          According to your logic, voyeurism shouldn’t be an offense since it does not harm a person physically or monetarily. You said, “Legal “harm” can only occur when something is physical, or financial, or a violation of property in general.” But voyeurism is causing none of those.

          Bhagwad, going by your logic on cheating, then extra-marital sex or adultery shouldn’t be illegal too. Obviously you will agree that it shouldn’t be illegal. But people still go to court and apply for a divorce on grounds of cheating by their partners. There isn’t any physical trauma or any monetary loss or loss of any physical assets if a person has sex out of marriage. But still it has legal consequences.

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      • @Lavanya

        Like it or not, we live in a society that makes four basic assumptions:

        1. No one wants to die
        2. No one wants to be physically hurt
        3. A person has the right to their property
        4. It’s possible to measure physical pain

        This gives physical pain a special place. Like I said, it’s no use debating this point since it’s a fundamental axiom of modern jurisprudence. The law assumes that consent under threat of physical force is invalid.

        So sex due to fear of death or physical harm is rape. Sex due to fear of social repurcussions is not rape since the woman has the choice to just say “no”. I have been writing about the difference between physical harm and emotional harm for years:

        http://www.bhagwad.com/blog/2012/rights-and-freedoms/physical-harm-is-more-serious-than-emotional-harm.html/

        http://www.bhagwad.com/blog/2012/rights-and-freedoms/physical-harm-is-more-serious-than-emotional-harm.html/

        I’ve already explained that impersonating a doctor is illegal and a very specific crime. We don’t need to make another one for it. Voyeurism is once again a very clear case of non consent. The person being watched did not consent to being watched! And since a body is one’s property we have the right to decide who sees it and who doesn’t. Voyeurism is a very definite violation of property.

        And finally, of course extra marital affairs and adultery should not be illegal!! Whoever gave you the idea that it should?? Applying for divorce on grounds of adultery is a very different thing from adultery being illegal. In fact, we need to reach a stage where you don’t have to give a reason for divorce at all.

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        • Bhagwad, I went through the links you provided. Though a lot what you’ve written makes sense but somewhere along the way you missed some extremely important issues which have led to your present viewpoint about ‘harm’.

          As about the four assumptions you stated,
          1. No one wants to die. – ever heard about suicides ?
          2. & 3. appear to be quite valid.
          4. It’s possible to measure physical pain. – How actually ? Please enlighten us all about the measurement units and instruments of measuring physical pain.

          The basic fact you don’t seem to understand is that even without the threat of physical harm, a person does not always have the choice to say ‘no’.

          About voyeurism, where did this new concept of non-consent arise from ? Earlier you stated that “Legal “harm” can only occur when something is physical, or financial, or a violation of property in general.” Voyeurism doesn’t comprise of any such harm. As for the body being the private property, agreed. But what physical or monetary harm is being done to the person being watched ? Is there a measurement for that type of harm ?

          Violation of property occurs when someone encroaches physically on it. Like a person who trespasses on a personal property can be accused of violating the property, but not if he merely watches the property from a distance. Similarly, if the same logic is applied to a person’s body, then only physical touch can be taken to be a violation. But voyeurism includes watching too. Therefore there is something more than mere physical violation.

          As for adultery, do you think adultery cannot be a ground for divorce ? And if one doesn’t have to give a reason for divorce at all, then won’t we see people getting married and then applying for divorce in order to get the share of assets jointly owned by the two partners ? Should it then be a law that people who don’t give a reason for divorce do not have a right to anything from the partner ?

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        • And yes, about the importance of non-consent… the people who get cheated for issues other than money or physical assets, do you think they consent to being cheated ?

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        • @Lavanya – “Bhagwad, going by your logic on cheating, then extra-marital sex or adultery shouldn’t be illegal too. Obviously you will agree that it shouldn’t be illegal. But people still go to court and apply for a divorce on grounds of cheating by their partners. There isn’t any physical trauma or any monetary loss or loss of any physical assets if a person has sex out of marriage. But still it has legal consequences.”

          Yes – a person goes to court to apply for divorce. But the very act of extra marital affair, which breaks someone’s trust is not punishable by law, that is, it is not a criminal act. Can a spouse ever go to court and claim, that i have been having sex with my spouse thinking that he/ she is faithful to me, but he/she has not been. So, he has cheated me and my having sex with him is now rape – so please jail him – is it ever possible Lavanya?

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      • @Lavanya

        You’re right. People do commit suicide. But like I said, we’re starting off with an assumption that no one wants to die and if a few people don’t fall into that category, we’re ok with that. It’s an assumption that we agree to live with even if it doesn’t cover everyone. In any case, we can always claim that a person’s life is their property so they can do with it as they like. But this isn’t necessary.

        While individual pain is subjective, it can and has been measured: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolorimeter . In any case, this is an example where for legal we equate physical pain with the extent of physical damage which is very easily measurable.

        You need not demonstrate harm in order to show a violation of property. I can have rules saying that no one in my house should have green eyes and anyone forcibly violating my rules is guilty of a crime even though there is no demonstrable harm. The violation of property is a distinct one from violation of physical harm.

        Also, there is actually one more right that is implicit in civilized societies. The right to privacy. While not explicitly mentioned as a constitutional right, the Supreme Court in India as well as courts in other countries have held it to be an implied one as part of the right to life and liberty. Voyeurism is a clear violation of the right to privacy.

        Coming to adultery, I’m saying it’s none of the court’s business why two people want to get divorced. Most civilized countries in the world have the concept of “irreconcilable differences” when it comes to divorce. I used to write for a law firm in Colorado and I know that Colorado statutes don’t even recognize any other reasons for a divorce. The state is essentially saying “You wan’t a divorce? Fine. Don’t bother me with reasons. Reasons are your problem not the government’s”. Property division after divorce is quite a nuanced topic. It’s not so simple as just divorcing the next day and getting a share of the other person’s property!

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        • Bhagwad, please do not get ridiculous in your arguments if you cannot debate logically. Where in the world do you find any court of law using a dolorimeter to measure pain inflicted on a victim ? Does law even recognize the results obtained through a dolorimeter ? And what about the pain which has no visible physical damage to measure ? Please do not argue just for the sake of arguing.

          Secondly, you are contradicting your own logic when you say that “You need not demonstrate harm in order to show a violation of property.” If there is no harm done, then where is the crime ? But you still refuse to accept the same logic with my examples.

          If a person’s body is his personal property, then so are his thoughts and emotions. So, if a person gets cheated (as in my examples) it is also a violation of trust. You need to decide if specific harm needs to be demonstrated to show violation or it doesn’t. You cannot be selective in your arguments.

          And about divorce, I never said about getting divorced the next day and getting the share in property immediately. Leave the time frame out of the picture. Still one can marry only to get the property share by divorcing.

          For your confusion about the word ‘cheated’, please refer to any simple English dictionary.

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      • @Lavanya

        As for being cheated, if money, property, or physical harm (or privacy) is not involved, I doubt the word “cheated” can apply at all. Can you give me some examples?

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      • @Lavanya

        There’s no need to call me “ridiculous”. We’re having a nice polite discussion. Let’s keep it that way.

        I’ve clearly mentioned that physical pain for legal purposes is measured by the amount of physical damage (or the amount of physical violence used). Or did you not read that? Can you give me an example of a court case dealing with assault without any physical violence or damage?

        I’ve also clearly mentioned that property violation is a separate violation from harm! Is there some confusion about this?

        Your thoughts and emotions surely belong to you. Is anyone taking them away? Is anyone forcing you to think something else? Is anyone prying on your thoughts and emotions? Being “cheated” does none of these. I’m unable to comprehend your point.

        As I mentioned before, can you give me some examples of being “cheated” where there is no physical violation, no financial violation, no property violation and no privacy violation? Then perhaps we can have something concrete to discuss.

        Finally, if someone is willing to get married for years just to get property, then that’s perfectly fine. I don’t see an issue with it. Do you?

        And I would appreciate it if you refrained from getting personal. Let’s keep the discussion clean shall we?

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        • Bhagwad, again, how can the amount of physical damage or physical violence used be measured in any court of law for any legal purpose. Suppose a person is kicked hard in the stomach by a random man in a deserted street. Now how do you measure the amount of physical damage in such a case ? Or is it perfectly legal to kick someone hard in the stomach as it shows no visible signs of physical damage ?

          And you are yourself confused about property violation. You used different yardsticks for different types of property. Can looking at someone’s property without their consent be a harm ? If yes, how do you measure that harm ? If no, why is voyeurism a harm ?

          A person cannot get physically harmed if he or she is watched in a private or intimate moment. Neither is there any monetary harm. So it should then be accepted by you that harm other than physical also matters.

          And if you are fine with people getting married for the sake of getting property, then you must also be completely fine with people getting conned by con-men. Don’t you consider loss of property and/or money after a divorce a type of harm ?

          Lastly, I hope you do read my comments properly. I used the word ridiculous for your arguments here. I didn’t call you ridiculous. Where did I get personal ? I didn’t know you were so emotionally sensitive that you would get upset if I called your arguments ridiculous irrespective of whether they are ridiculous or not. There are much harsher and personal comments made by lots of people commenting here in the course of a debate without people getting upset about them.

          And yes, this also goes to show that emotional harm does matter contrary to your belief that it doesn’t. Or else you wouldn’t have got so upset.

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      • @Lavanya

        I’m sure you’ll agree with me when I say that some evidence is necessary to bring a case to court. If a person is kicked on a deserted road with no physical marks, no witnesses, and no circumstances whatsoever that indicate it happened then the case will be thrown out of court. Like it or not we live in an evidence based jurisprudence system. And all in all, I think that is a good thing.

        Yes I use different yardsticks for different types of property. Is that wrong? We agree in our world that a person’s body has a greater right to privacy as far as viewing goes than other property. Would you have it any other way?

        I think I’ve already explained to you that privacy violation does not need “harm” to be proved. It’s assumed that violation of privacy is prima facie harm enough. I think my previous comments have made it clear that “property harm” by violation of property rights and privacy violations are counted as harm is that not so?

        As far as con men go, it depends if there was some illegality. The type of con men you’re referring to almost always do something illegal. If everything is illegal I don’t see how you can bring a case against anyone.

        Finally, your example of me finding “harm” by your “ridiculous” comment is an excellent test case. I may find it offensive but do you see me dragging you to court over it? No. Do you see me complaining to the government? No. Do you even see me asking for your comment to be removed? No.

        And that’s how it should be in a civilized society. We just put up with stuff unless you’re harmed in one of the specific ways agreed upon. And no – offense does not count. Feeling bad does not count. Getting your heart broken does not count. These are problems we have to deal with ourselves without going crying to the government.

        Do you agree?

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    • I agree with desidaroo here, the only problem seems to be the idle moralising. But to give the judge the benefit of doubt, I think he remarked it out of sheer exasperation, having to deal with ‘rape’ cases like that take up resources away from real rape case.

      And Lavanya, I don’t think you get the point of the existence of criminal justice system – it is not in place to treat the violations of people’s personal ideals and values as a punishable offence. Leave that to priests. If a woman will ONLY have sex on the promise of marriage, with the clear implication that sex is something she is ‘giving’ as a consideration for the promise of marriage, I think it would be a valid ground for a civil suit – a breach of contract as it were. Kind of like the implied contract that when you order food at a restaurant, you pay. Making it a ‘rape’ is a mockery of the criminal justice system and taking away the spotlight off real rape victims.

      Rape is an aggravated form of physical assault (or in legalese, a ‘battery’) and it should be treated as such.

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  3. Yes. You have “Consensual” sex, then if you cry it is rape, no one can prove it was consensual. It is the shim and the wish of the lady. The only thing is men, NEVER get into sex with any one but your wife.

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      • Oh ya. Leave the minors,m it’s illegal alright. What about those many women who artfully plot to have sex with a man just to accuse him of rape? And if you have marital rape laws, how on earth will you say it was not consensual and prove it? Today I will happily have a steamy session. Tomorrow I have a fight with my husband and then cry h “raped” me. Poor husband.

        Same for boy friend also. Today it may really be consensual. Tomorrow after some fight or some anger,If I just say he raped me, world will believe me. The man has no choice in India. What the woman says is true. And that is dangerous.

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        • So IHM wants the WOMAN to have the final word and decision on when to have sex. The man’s desire must get PERMISSION from his wife, to have sex. Why not have a “Sex consent form”, to be approved by wife before every session, to be safe from her accusing him of rape, later?

          You speak of controlling sexuality and condemn it, but that is what you want to do – control men’s sexuaity and have 100% decision and control to decide if and when you want to have sex. Hypocrites.

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        • “What about those many women who artfully plot to have sex with a man”

          The world isn’t a TV serial, Bollywood movie, or a fast-paced thriller novel for such things to happen with the commonality that you claim they do. There are cases, yes, but nothing quite as dramatic, horrifying, or common as you think.

          “world will believe me”

          I don’t know what world, universe, or alternate dimension you happen to live in, but the last time I checked, the world does two things when you cry rape. 1) They tell you that it’s your fault. 2) They outright deny it, hush it up, and say that it doesn’t happen in “families/societies/cultures like ours” and “he’s a good/rich/educated/successful/cultured man who would never do such a thing, so you’re lying”.

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        • “So IHM wants the WOMAN to have the final word and decision on when to have sex.”

          Um, yes. Because if one party does not want to have sex, and the other party forces the issue (man or woman), it is rape. If one party in the act does not give consent at any point in time, and the other party continues in spite of the lack of consent, then it is rape. If the man initiates sex, then it is the woman who gets the final word as to whether or not to proceed. If she does not want to proceed, and the man persists, then it is rape. If the woman initiates sex, then it is the man who gets the final word. If he does not want to proceed, and the woman persists, then it is rape.

          It takes two to tango. If one person doesn’t want to tango, and the other person insists on dragging them across the dance floor with no respect for their wishes, then it is wrong. You need the consent of BOTH people in order to proceed with an act that requires the equal participation of both individuals. If one person consents, and the other person doesn’t, then you stop. Because sex is not just about the man, but also about the woman. And it is not controlling someone’s sexuality when you are the one who also has to participate, and it is you who is getting affected as well.

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        • Why would any woman accuse a man of rape for no reason? That’s just stupid. That’s like cutting off your nose to spite your face, especially in the Indian context where a rape victim is something less than a human.

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        • And yes, men must get their wife’s consent to have sex with them because wives are not their husband’s property to be used as they please. They are individuals who decide how their own bodies shall be used.

          And Raghav, why are you SO obsessed with this blog?

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    • I read somewhere once that there are more rapists getting a conviction and going to jail than there are women who have consensual sex and attempt to say it is rape in order to defame someone. Think about that for a second. The odds of getting a proper conviction for a perpetrator are slim as it is. The odds of a man being accused falsely of rape are even slimmer than that. Which makes your argument fall apart pretty easily.

      Not to mention–a man getting into sex with his wife can still be classified as rape if the wife, at any point, says that she does not want to have sex with him before or during the act. Marriage does not equal consent to using someone’s body the way you want either. Nor will it protect a man from rape cases, or even false accusations at that. The only thing protecting husbands from being convicted for rape is the fact that India still has not criminalized marital rape, as IHM pointed out.

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  4. Chastity and virginity are now bad words for immoral women who pose as feminists and modern women. The excuse? men sleep wit many women it seems. Even if that was the case, if one eats rubbish, should you also eat it? LUST. That is the prime factor in these immoral activities. No virtuous man or woman will want a person – man or woman – who had sex before marriage as their spouse. This is not like west where one can “date” and sleep with as many people you want, marry and divorce at your sweet will. Adjusting, commitment for life etc are required. Today’s woman does not want it. With rights come responsibilities. You don’t want the latter. Shame. I hope I never meet any of you feminists in my life. Screwed up in heads!

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    • I hope to God I never meet anybody like you in real life either. I don’t think I’d like to be held responsible for whatever actions may occur as a result.

      Also, if sex is totally immoral, what about lying, cheating and stealing? And torture, wars, violence, hatred, and bigotry? And greed, corruption, murder, bullying–do you want me to go on? Aren’t all of these things immoral as well? Yet, in society, we almost never see anybody systematically or stringently oppose any of these things as much as they oppose sex and sexual liberty. Somehow, it’s okay to police the actions of two human beings that have little to no bearing on anybody else, but I have never seen anybody in India take as big a stance on any of the above as much as I see them take a stance on sexual morality. Nobody ever polices our corrupt politicians as much as they police innocent men and women who interact with one another. Nobody ever goes the extra mile to make sure that law and order exists in this country the same way universities do to make sure that men and women don’t share the same shade or even look at one another.

      Maybe, if we actually expended our energies for worthwhile, more pressing pursuits, we wouldn’t have such a screwed up country. Maybe, if we measured the value, worth and virtuosity of a human being by their kindness, sincerity, good heart and ability to love, instead of how in accordance they are to a made-up social construct, we wouldn’t have so many issues. But no. Our priorities will always be messed up, thanks to attitudes like this. This is exactly what is wrong with our society. Not the lack of “moral”, “virtuous” men and women who don’t have sex, but people like you, who place importance and value on things that aren’t any of your concern.

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    • Chastity and Virginity are not bad words at all. What is bad is attaching the strings of morality to what is very instinctive and does not affect you in any which way at all.

      FYI, people in the west dont just randomly sleep with anyone and go through divorces like its going out of fashion. Like us, they too invest a lot in relationships and for the most part want it to work out. But they are not chastised by the society for moving on if a relationship does not work out for them. Divorce is extremely expensive in the west and is a complete last resort for couples.

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    • But Jayanthi, LUST is a feeling that is given to us by GOD. Are you going against what GOD has created? Are you saying that GOD is a fool to give us such feelings?
      By your definition, I am not virtuous. Alas! I completely understand that LUST and SEX are completely normal activities and has nothing to do with morals or responsibilities. Oh I am screwed up but what makes me happy is that being screwed up as per your definition is much better than sharing your views.

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    • I dont understand why such a big deal is made out of chastity and virginity!! And why are these words only associated with women?? And Ms. Iyer need not speak for other people. Does she mean only men can be lustful? And women should just be dutiful and quench men’s thirst? She also needs to step out of her coccoon and travel around the world before making such stupid assumptions about the West. Instead of waxing eloquent about morality.. such people must advocate the use of safe sex, birth control, sex education etc.

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    • Yes, you are right, “No virtuous man or woman will want a person – man or woman – who had sex before marriage as their spouse.”

      That is why in agrarian India, oh Bharat we have child marriages (India refused to sign UN Human Rights council proposal on ending child marriage and forced marriage), nata (sending woman back to her parents if she fails to reproduce or birth sons or does not meet household obligations to the satisfaction of the man and his family and they in return pay back the bride price and marry her off to another man and widow remarriage to the deceased’s brother or cousin. So much for virtue, virtuous men and women and Bharat.

      Yes, you should not meet feminists but enjoy the fruit of their hard work, the regulated working hours from 14-12 long days to eight hours and weekly offs and safety of child workers were brought about by feminists in India in textile mills not men.
      DG

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    • Again i see the comparison with the west. What do you have against the west and the free will of having a life and doing what you want. A healthy society is one that having rules which not deprive you of individual rights. I don’t say that west is a healthy society, far from me this thinking, but at least is little more healthy then others. If you will check the Maslow’s hierarchy of needs you will see that sex is a primary need near the breathing, food , water, sleep, homeostasis, excretion. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is a theory in psychology. Based on this sex is nothing then a primary need and this is the truth. Some societies made from sex something so much important just to control persons and specially women. Sex is just a normal basic need. What is important is the love that complete the sex. So some people do just sex, others make love not sex. The last category will attach different feelings to the basic need of sex and changing it into something more then a basic need. Is nothing wrong in having sex or making love and society is not having any right to involve in the primary needs of persons. If society involving in primary needs then society should tell you when to eat, what to eat, how to eat, how much to eat, when to take out what you ate, how to do that , etc. I don’t think society is telling you anything like this. So why society will make rules when and how to make sex. Is your free will. Is there in indian society a sort of hate against genders that i will never understand. Women and men should love each other and try to find their peace together, having families or not, having babies or not. Try to understand that is nothing wrong in having sex and no commitment. Are many people that are commited for life even without sex. Commitment come from love and trust and understanding and not from sexual intercourse. And to tell you truth we all want commitment and specially women wanting life time commitment but after we meet few cheap persons like you we have two options: life time lonliness or sex with no commitment. Sorry to tell you cheap but your thinking is really so so so cheap……………….. And regarding rape shame for women so cheap to make false accusations, shame for men worst then animals, shame for who marry without love and then rape or accept the life time rape. Life is like you make it. What you want that you will have.

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    • You talk about Lust like it was an alien object sent to kill us. Isn’t that simply inate? Just like thirst and hunger. What good could come from the so called “virtuous” man who has no respect for me? I’d rather be with a man who knows how to respect women, also someone who knows what he is doing😉

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  5. What’s wrong with what the judge said ? In India, unlike other countries, we have a ridiculous definition of rape. Even if a girl has consensual sex with a man and then if he refuses to marry her, she can cry rape. In what way is this justice ? But, if a girl sleeps with a man and then refuses to marry him, then she is free to do whatever she wants. This particular aspect of rape law is ridiculous and what the judge observed is absolutely valid.

    If you women want to sleep around before marriage and not follow the social norms, that’s your choice. But, don’t come back running to the society crying rape once the man refuses to marry you.

    PS: This comment is specific to rape on the assurance of marriage. And, please try to avoid Ad hominem attacks in your reply.

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    • “she can cry rape”

      But is the rapist actually convicted in such cases? How many actual rape cases are even convicted? She can cry rape, yes, but most of the time, the accused in question gets let off, irrespective of rape actually occurring or no. In fact, the de facto assumption in many cases is that the woman wanted it, then changed her mind afterward, even if it was a case of actual rape and not just what you described. And a lot of the time, the man gets off unscathed, no damage to his reputation done.

      I’m not saying that this in any way makes what you described correct, or justifiable. The point of my comment is to say that accusations are different from convictions and accusations can be made without consequences being followed through. Especially in a system like India’s, where even if a girl cries rape with legitimacy, that is also discredited and she is made into a pariah. While being falsely accused of anything is a terrible thing and a blot on someone’s credibility, the consequences of such a false accusation do not have the same type of weight as say, a false accusation about a girl’s modesty would.

      Again, I’m not saying that false accusations are correct–just that one should examine how much weight and water that accusation would actually have in society, and how much impact it would have upon a person.

      “This particular aspect of rape law is ridiculous”

      Totally agreed with this part. I think the idea of the promise of marriage with sex has a lot to do with just how unequipped Indians are in dealing with relationships, period. If only more education was done, to shed light on how to have successful, healthy relationships, with successful, healthy break-ups and movings-on, we wouldn’t have to resort to Bollywood movies in order to take our cues about how to behave.

      The whole load of crock about “first loves” and eternity that is sold to us messes up everybody’s head. That, coupled with the fact that women who have sex need to be made into “honest women” through marriage, and the whole idea that you’re only worth so much as your sex life is terrible. At the end of the day, all the problems come full circle. You start to unravel one, and you find another one, and another one, and another one. How far back can we go? The dawn of civilization? Society ought to come with a reboot button and a system restore. Would make life so much easier.

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      • I am not sure how you are refuting my point. My only argument is that the judge’s observation is correct and IHM’s criticism of his observation doesn’t make sense. Women can sleep with whomever they want before marriage. But, don’t go running to the courts crying rape the moment he refuses to marry you. Not only is it immoral, it also artificially increases the rape statistics and also makes people doubt even real rapes. Several courts have made this observation recently.

        http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-05-26/india/39538054_1_justice-g-p-mittal

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        • Even when women are in relationships, rape is possible and in those cases, no matter how immoral the courts thinks women being sexually active is, the accusations need to be taken seriously. Being in a relationship doesn’t mean giving up the right to deny consent. In case the accusations are false, that should be proved like in any other case, but to say that women are morally bound to stay asexual except with their husbands (where they lose the right to deny consent) is immoral and patriarchal.

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        • @IHM: In the current case, the victim accuses that the accused got consent on the pretext of marriage and hence it is rape.

          “The prosecutrix states that she consented to sexual intercourse with the accused when he applied vermilion over her forehead in the hotel room and declared that they are now a married couple.”

          So, your argument about rape in a relationship is irrelevant. The rape under question here is one where consent is given on the assurance of marriage.

          All the current laws are biased against men on the assumption that women won’t have sex outside of marriage. If the judge shouldn’t assume that, then we should change those laws too.

          I do agree with you that all rape cases have to taken seriously and thoroughly investigated. And even here, the other aspects of the case like nude pictures that was taken and the assault that the victim alleges have to be investigated.

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        • I wasn’t refuting your point at all, I was agreeing with it. I was just pointing out that the consequence of false accusations for men have a different weight in society, that’s all. Otherwise, I agree with the premise about not going to court over a broken engagement and such. You’re very correct about how that decreases the credibility of actual rape cases.

          However, that wasn’t what the judge was observing. IHM is objecting to exactly what it says in her blog post title. The very first thing the judge is saying is that girls are morally bound to not have sex before marriage, as though doing so decreases our credibility and our worth when it doesn’t.

          Why should people not object to this observation? If the judge was making only a singular point about how many rape cases do not fit the current definition of rape as defined by the law, then why not just say that and be done with it? Why bring the morality of women having premarital sex into the statement at all? There is nothing particularly wrong with his second observation, but he could have very well stated that all on its own and still made a strong case for it without having to start by defining the worth of a woman based on her sexual status.

          Furthermore, it implicitly discourages women who have premarital sex, who have been actually raped, from bringing a case to court. It implies that if you’ve had premarital sex at all, your case will not be taken seriously, because the judge will believe that you were just another girl who had sex and don’t want to deal with the consequences. His statement dangerously implies that girls who have premarital sex cannot be raped, as their honour no longer exists to be violated, and rape is only a crime if the victim’s honour is destroyed.

          This is what I object to. It does not matter how sexually active I am before marriage–if I am raped, a crime has been committed against me. My sexual status should have no bearing upon the credibility of my case. Unfortunately, his statements seem to imply otherwise, which is severely problematic.

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  6. My guess is according to the judge, if a woman has sex outside of marriage, then
    – she will ALWAYS want to have sex with ANYONE, hence she cannot be raped
    – she has no ‘modesty’ that is enraged, hence her rape is inconsequential
    – a few women have cried rape when their boyfriends refused to marry them, hence ALL women who have pre marital sex are plotting against men to bring false rape charges.

    Of course, once you are married, according to the great Indian law, you cannot be raped by your husband. Even if he confesses.

    What a judge should be is impartial. Someone who looks at each and every case based on EVIDENCE and gives a decision as per the law. They cannot go on spouting misogynistic nonsense just because they power and a platform.

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  7. Why are women always saddled with upholding morality in a society? For a society to be moral, all the human beings in it have to behave with morality, don’t they? Why do we give free passes to 50% of the population, while criminalizing the other 50% of the population for not upholding some idiotic convention that can only be defined by the individual in question? Also, why on earth is having or not having sex equated with the morality of a society? Since when does sex involve anybody except for the individuals who are involved in the act? Why has this even become the benchmark by which we claim a society is “good”, and not other things like education, equal opportunity, and the ability for people to have basic human decency?

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    • Where did the judge say that women alone have to uphold morality or men don’t need to uphold it ? The current laws assume that all women are “abala naaris” and “sitas” and if there is an accusation, then the man is always at fault ( at least when it comes to rape, domestic violence etc.) So, it makes sense to expect women to be “sitas” and not abuse the system.

      Like

        • Well, if we don’t want any such assumptions, we should go for gender neutral DV laws and gender neutral rape laws, none of which will work in our country.

          Like

      • “Where did the judge say that women alone have to uphold morality or men don’t need to uphold it ?”

        The judge starts his words by saying that, “Girls are morally bound to not have sex before marriage.” He doesn’t say men and women. He does not say youth. He does not say couples. He says, GIRLS are MORALLY BOUND to not have sex before marriage. We are in bondage to uphold an ideal that many of us don’t believe in. If he didn’t believe that women alone have to uphold morality, then the judge would have chosen his words differently to reflect his thoughts.

        “and if there is an accusation, then the man is always at fault”

        Only a fraction of rape cases out of the total are ever reported to the police. When the accusations are brought forth, false or otherwise, the questioning always goes along the lines of this:

        “What was the GIRL wearing?”
        “What was the GIRL doing?”
        “Why was the GIRL walking out alone at night?”
        “Why was the GIRL talking to that boy? Doesn’t SHE know any better?”
        “Why didn’t the GIRL behave well and not provoke the boy?”

        Sexual assault has always been touted as the victim’s fault for provoking her attacker. SHE should not have dressed that way. SHE should not have done this, or done that, or done something differently. The onus is almost always upon the WOMAN to uphold the morals in a society. In comparison, the men are always thought to have been “provoked”, even though they are the ones who committed the crime. Men are not held at fault, and even if they are, the weight of the blame is shifted to the woman because he is said to “not be himself”. So no, the man is not always considered to be at fault. Not by a long shot.

        As for women “abusing the system” — 80% of rape cases are never even reported. Why? Because even if they were reported, they would be dismissed outright as they so often are. It is not possible for women to abuse a system that is not even designed to help them to start with.

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  8. I will never stop being surprised by the number of times the false accusation argument is brought up for rape – especially marital rape. False accusations can be brought up for anything. One could potentially falsely accuse their spouse of stealing, domestic violence, or any other criminal activity. We don’t those entire crimes being legalized just because there is a chance that someone will falsely accuse. This is exactly what the courts are for – to examine evidence and only then make a judgement. Why should it be any different for rape?

    And then ofcourse, there is the sad possibility that so many Indian men have forced their wives to some extent that it hits too close to home. As long as it is legal, they can still be considered righteous men. But call them what they are – rapists and now they have to confront what they have been doing all along.

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    • Rapes are different from the other crimes you are comparing them too. You cannot get arrested based on accusations by a single person in the other crimes you are comparing rape too. Socially you pay a heavy price when you are accused of rape. Just like some people think women are lying most of the time, there is an another set of people who believe that most men will rape if given a chance and they are guilty of the crime before the court hands down any sentence.

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      • Are you aware that most rapes/sexual crimes are not reported? And the biggest reason for this is the difficulty in getting the police and society to see that rapists and not the rape survivors are responsible for rapes?
        Do you think rape accused should be treated differently? Would that help control the crime and discourage rapists in general and life easier for women and their families and friends?
        How do you think should the system change to make reporting and conviction easier?

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        • @ Indian homemaker I agree with what you are saying.
          That is why the word of a victim has to carry more weight than other crimes that are being compared to rape.
          @Fem and this is what makes what i have said in my previous comments true.

          Like

      • What nonsense! You don’t pay a heavy social price if you are accused of theft or murder? I don’t know about you but I certainly wouldn’t want to be hanging around a murderer and any such person would definitely be left out of all my invitations! Just like rapists …

        Like

  9. I think that many Indians don’t really understand what rape actually means. There was a study conducted in South Africa on what men thought about forced rape, and the results were shocking. Most men thought that women are happy with it, and a lot of men also did not realize it was wrong for any specific reason. The result: the rape statistics in SA is very high. I would guess the same is true of India.

    We should basically address rape at the grassroots level. First, have sessions in school where children are taught sex-ed, and boys are taught about how women feel when they are violated. This actually can also be used to make the kids understand when they are being wrongfully molested and report it to the right people. On another level, people in professions such as the law, police, doctors, etc. should also be made to attend sensitisation workshops to keep their licences.

    Shouting about rape and how wrong it is, is very well for a start, but it’s not going to solve things or prevent rapists. We need to stop making rapists out of our young men by not giving them unrestricted freedom to loiter around, by not having different rules for brothers and sisters at home, and by refusing seggregation in schools and colleges.

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    • “I think that many Indians don’t really understand what rape actually means.”

      This is very true. Unfortunately, educating Indians about rape would mean having mandatory and a somewhat comprehensive type of sex education in schools. It is in built into the psyche of Indians that any mention of sex, consensual or otherwise, is bad and should never ever be talked about. Even if it means that this lack of knowledge would give rise to crimes. As far as many Indians are concerned, sex shouldn’t be talked about in any sense of the word, not even to discuss what it actually is, until marriage. So while education about rape and what it actually means is an excellent idea and very much needed, I can’t see it happening any time soon.

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      • Sorry, I should have been clearer. By loitering around on street corners and passing comments on girls because it’s ‘cool’. By loitering around streets and stalking (sorry, expressing loooove) to them by chasing them around on bikes. By loitering outside schools and make girls uncomfortable by staring at them. This behaviour is actually often subtly endorsed by parents because they don’t take the son to task and explain why it is wrong and what kind of psychological damage they are doing to the girls. Most teenage boy REALLY wants to hurt girls, they just don’t realize the consequences of their actions because no one ever informs them, including the girls they stalk / whistle at / pass comments on.

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        • ok, but you should understand that loitering around does not always lead to female harassment. Both boys and girls can loiter around when they have nothing better to do. And most teenage boys do not want to hurt girls or anybody else for that matter.

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        • I never said they did. My point was that they ARE hurting girls without realizing the harm they are doing because they have not been guided properly. I don’t blame teenage guys at all. I am blaming the society which does not explain the consequences of their actions on girls.

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        • **Most teenage boys are not really hurting anybody and you should blame the ones that are and not just the society.

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        • Are you even reading my posts? Parents are responsible for bringing up their children and if teenager boys (under 18) commit acts of sexual harassment on the streets, I am not going to blame them fully, I am going to blame their parents and the society which refuses to guide them in the right path, towards equality and respect to all. Children don’t miraculously grow up into misogynists, they are brought up to be one.

          Like

  10. The judge’s attitude on morality is shared by a lot of people. Fear of this “morality” is one reason why people are forced into pretend marriages and then feel the need to cry rape when the pretend marriages don’t come true.

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  11. I have often wondered why loss of virginity is a big deal in India. Is it really a loss? Shouldn’t we as Indians be more concerned if a person loses their sense of honesty or justice? Consensual sex is an adult individual right.It’s up to each person to choose whether or not you exercise that right.

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        • You already have the right to sexual freedom. It’s not illegal in India to sleep with whomever you want. What you are asking for is the “right” not to be judged.

          Like

      • Oh no, it should be the father’s right to make his daughter sleep with whoever he wants her to sleep with. That sounds much better! In the meantime men should be able to sleep with whoever they want, actually without needing consent they can just rape whoever they want. Perfect. *eye roll*

        Like

  12. The slippery slope is right here.

    1. You will first want the right to have sex before marriage (which is fine legally).

    2. Then, you would ask for the “right” not to judged for not being a virgin. Then, you would want to sleep around and not be called a slut. (No one has a “right” not to be judged)

    3. After getting the first two, you would want the state to subsidize your fatherless child. Worse, you will point at some random dude as the father and make the state force him to pay child support to subsidize your debauchery. This happens a lot in US (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paternity_fraud#United_States)

    4. Given a chance, you would even make paternity testing illegal so that you can sleep around freely even while married (as is the case in France/Germany. That too in the name of maintaining “peace” in the french families). Then, you would redefine fatherhood saying it is determined by society not by biology.
    http://www.ibdna.com/regions/UK/EN/?page=paternity-testing-ban-upheld-in-france

    No wonder why our current Indian system has some restrictions on sexuality, given how women behave with more “freedom”. I agree that governance has to be improved to provide more safety for men and women. But, that doesn’t mean we should give a free pass for women to be sluts.

    And, you think this is what the original feminists had in mind when they fought for suffrage, so that the next generation women will not only have the right to be sluts but also have the “right” not to be called sluts. No wonder society is degrading !!

    Like

    • Fatherless child? Unless the child was born of immaculate conception, biology demands that every child have a biological father and a mother. And as far as state subsidizing the cost of raising my child, it is exclusively dependent on the financial situation of the father and the mother, not their marital status. Which means that even if me and my unemployed boyfriend married, it would have NO effect on what the state’s decision.

      And then there is the poor hapless guy syndrome. Men do not know that sex can have consequences? Really? And somehow every child born out of wedlock has to be against the wishes of the biological father? And then, every child born in a marriage is carefully planned and welcomed by the biological father? Too many assumptions going on here….

      I have no control over nor intend to control your judgements/opinions. What I will fight for however is that my legal rights and economic opportunities not be affected by judgemental people like you.

      Like

      • Since there has been no verified case of parthenogenesis in human beings, a fatherless child obviously means a child with no known father and as a result, the state has to become a substitute by means of welfare.

        I have no idea what the rest of your comment is about. Where did I ever talk about men not knowing the consequence of sex ? I was just explaining the natural progression of “feminists” asking for more “rights” as observed in US with laws like Bradley amendment which forces men to pay child support even if the child is not theirs. And, even worse laws in France/Germany where it’s literally illegal to even know if the child is yours. You are more than welcome to disagree if you have any substantive points.

        Like

    • Ha Ha Ha…What. Utter. BS!

      1. So big-minded of you to acknowledge that other people might want their rights. There will be a temple going up for you anytime now
      2. Nice try. Actually, you really do not have the right to judge other people on their personal sex lives. That’s a violation of their privacy. Is it really that hard to understand that other people’s personal sex lives are none of your business (unless, of course, you are a pervert or a voyeur)?
      3. “fatherless”? As Clueless mentioned, there is no such thing as a fatherless child. There are children whose fathers have deserted them and left the single mom to take care of the children by herself. Are you seriously targeting this group and blaming it on the women? In case you didn’t realize it, for every slutty mother, there is a slutty father somewhere who is also rolling around in “debauchery”. Also, child support is for the children. Are you really going to use a few cases of paternity fraud to malign all child support? Hey, we have a few cases of insurance fraud…maybe we should stop all insurance. There’s fraud in the stock market too…maybe we should close down the stock market and pat ourselves on the back. Yes, there are dishonest women who commit paternity fraud intentionally and they should be penalized, but how is that in any way relevant to the actual fact of child support and the need for child support especially among low income groups?
      4. I don’t get this. A ban on paternity testing hurts women far more than men. Yes, there will be a few men who end up supporting kids that are not theirs…but without paternity testing, there will be a ton of single mothers who will never be able to hold the real father accountable for child support. They would end up supporting the kids by themselves all alone. In your unholy glee to blame feminists and women’s sexuality, I think you are missing the wood for the trees here, buddy.

      The Indian system has restrictions on women’s sexuality because it is a screwed-up, primitive, regressive system. It’s not really up to you or anyone else to decide whether or not women can have sex. Being a slut is a birth right, whether you are a man or a woman. The only problem is, only women are mostly left holding the bag (so to speak) and dealing with the consequences. Child support is a way of making sure men fulfill their part too. You have highlighted the flaws in child support clearly and they should be corrected. But the flaws do not invalidate child support itself.

      I actually disagree with you. Society is not degrading. Yes, I understand you are longing for the good old days when only men had the power to abuse the system whereas now even women are abusing the system. But the difference today is that all these abuses by both men and women are coming out in the open. There will definitely be conflict, but there will also be resolution. Society will be the stronger for it.

      In the meantime, judge women for being sluts all you want. It wouldn’t make you right, of course…I don’t get why on earth would you be interested in someone else’s sex life…but whatever floats your boat.

      Like

      • you have no capacity to face the truth. female rights are nothing but the fight to corrupt and degrade society . in UK more than one third children born are single parent (fatherless). this will lead to incest and ultimately society has to pay.
        women have been given a special duty of child birth by the god and thereby they have to take more responsibility otherwise they will not be saved from the fire they started.

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        • There is nothing wrong in being a single parent.

          Being raised by a single parent does not mean that the child is ‘fatherless’. It takes two to tango. Every child has a biological mother and father or it would not exist. Also, just because a child is raised by the mother does not mean that the father is not involved in its upbringing. In the UK, fathers are often very involved with their children even if they don’t have custody.

          Incest is having sex with one’s blood relatives. How on earth does being a single parent going to lead to incest?o_O Are you on some kind of drug?

          Sorry, we don’t need any special duty or god to tell us what responsibility to take, so god can take the responsibility and shove it where the sun doesn’t shine.

          Like

        • Are you in the right sense of your mind?

          what exactly do u mean by ” they have to take more responsibility otherwise they will not be saved from the fire they started”
          If women should be held responsible for having a child outside of marriage, are you saying the man who caused the pregnancy, did not have any part in it? Can they simply walk away just because men do not bear children? How screwed up are u?

          And what did the society pay ever? We’ve been paying for the sake of it for so many frigging years. Society is a virtual thing, which is meant to improve the individual life, and we are not meant to sacrifice our individuality for the sake of it.

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        • God gave you a special duty of having a brain. Please use it.

          Mother and children are much better taken care of in the UK than in India. Single mums in the UK have a much better life than some married mums in India. Atleast they don’t have a husband or in-laws abusing them for having girl children! These children were not conceived without a father so maybe you should be ranting at men who don’t support their own children.

          “female rights are nothing but the fight to corrupt and degrade society”

          Society is not degraded when men do exactly the same thing that women do? How strangely convenient for you! What makes you confident that you carry god’s message for women, seeing as you are not god and not a woman? Such blind male entitlement! I think you have no capacity to face the truth, which is that your ‘logic’ makes no sense.

          Like

    • Bahahahahaha!

      1. Certainly, I want the right.

      2. Yes again, my body, my choice. What’s wrong with ‘sluts’? They are only free about fulfilling a basic human function. Some people eat more than others, some people have more sex than others. It’s as simple as that.

      3. Not many women in India wants the state to pay for their children. In fact, many women in India don’t want children at all. And fatherless? hahahaha! Women don’t just randomly point at any dude either. They have to prove stuff.

      4. Paternity testing is not illegal in France or Germany. People only have to be upfront about it instead of sneaking behind the backs of their wives.

      Our legal system does NOT have restrictions on women. Our social system has, and we shall break it someday. You simply cannot regulate what happens inside a bedroom.

      Like

    • “After getting the first two, you would want the state to subsidize your fatherless child. Worse, you will point at some random dude as the father and make the state force him to pay child support to subsidize your debauchery. This happens a lot in US”

      — If one is capable of taking a decision to have Sexual partner outside marriage what makes you think they are not capable of contraception? All sex doesnt lead to babies my dear. and are men so idiotic that they will simply accept someone else’s baby as their own and make him pay child support – which age are you in, dna , dna dna …..

      As for it happening a lot in the US .. really? you have stats to prove this? no it is just recorded reported more accurately in the US, we indians like to push all our fatherless children under the dirt and hide them. open and humane we are not …

      There are plenty of absentee fathers in india and plenty of pre-marital sex going on, which is none of anyones business. there is also plenty of forced marriages, forced sex going on in a culturally approved way, again no business to judge. somehow having sex outside marriage leads directly to sluts, fatherless children, welfare and our mahan culture….
      IMO sex outside marriage should lead to choice, right to live the way one wants and respect of adult decisions…
      but we are far from that….we like to see others in misery, judge them and blame them, especially if they are women, not all but quite a few …makes us feel morally superior i guess.

      Like

    • “But, that doesn’t mean we should give a free pass for women to be sluts.”

      Err, what? You are no one to give women a free pass for anything. You don’t hold any passes. You have no authority of doing so. You can judge someone as whatever you want but any idea that you have the birth-right to dictate how half the population live is a delusion. A very silly one.

      “No wonder why our current Indian system has some restrictions on sexuality, given how women behave with more “freedom”.”

      Baseless allegations on half of the world’s population based on their gender. Misogyny by definition. You can judge whoever as whatever but your views will not be made law and the rest of the world is free to judge you as a bigot.

      Like

      • For all you folks wanting equal “rights” as men, be it in drinking or having sex, how come none of you talk about other areas primarily occupied by men, let’s say like army. I am sure our Jawans wouldn’t mind swapping their post with a woman where she can stand guard in sub-zero climate. It almost looks like you only want the advantages of being a man and not the demerits.

        As I have mentioned before, you have the right to do whatever you want, just not the right not to be judged. After all, if you are so confident about your lifestyle choices, why care about what others think of you ?

        @IHM: A similar comment that I made yesterday was deleted. Not sure what you found so “offensive”

        Like

        • Only in 1992 did the indian army even allow women to apply for officers cadre and since then plenty have . SO yes women would stand along with men on the front lines if they could , you should take it up with the Army folks and try facilitate that.
          Many of us did want to join the NDA and couldn’t. You had to be a MALE — see discrimination right there!!!!!

          anyway apart from that short note, how on earth did you come to the conclusion that equality means 1. women want to go around drinking and have sex all the time… is that all men do??/

          it just means be treated and judged the same as men . There are plenty of men who dont work in the armed forces and guard our freezing borders yet they can have sex and drink and have a gala time, how come no one asks them to go swap places with the jawans??? women dont want to be clones of men they just want to be treated the same. not special. not different. not subjugated, just like one would treat 2 different men and not take away the rights of a man just because he liked a peg or 2 or 10.

          equality means — all persons male and female are equal. Ps; read part3 constitution of india — – Fundamental Rights’ — It guarantees civil liberties such that all Indians can lead their lives in peace and harmony as citizens of India. no men women BS.

          Plus why would you be so wired about women having sex and drinking, are you so wired about men having sex and drinking too??? if not why not, dont you care about our fellow countrymen’s health and liver?? how about their moral compass🙂

          Like

        • Women are already part of the army since the 1990s and they have recently been fighting for rights to work in more roles than are currently given to women. We already have a large number of women in the police force as well, so it’s not that women are shying away from this life. So your argument is rather irrelevant.

          Like

        • He does have a point — it’s just not a very good one. While there is a “glass-ceiling” preventing women from getting the positions they deserve at the most prestigeous and best-paid jobs in society, there’s also a “glass-floor” preventing women from getting the most dirty, exhausting and dangerous jobs in socety.

          All the jobs with the highest mortality-rates are entirely dominated by men.

          I don’t think the point is much good though, because it’s not as if men are limited to only such jobs, and whether you get such a job, or a better one, is determined by factors other than your gender.

          Like

        • “how come none of you talk about other areas primarily occupied by men, let’s say like army”

          Err, women in the US have fought and won the right to go on the frontline this year. Their law has been amended. I suggest reading the newspaper once in a while.

          Like

        • @agrajag,

          “there’s also a “glass-floor” preventing women from getting the most dirty, exhausting and dangerous jobs in socety.”

          I disagree. Women are only barred from joining the army because it is seen as an honourable and important profession and women are seen as weak and unreliable. But there are PLENTY of women who work at breaking rocks and cleaning gutters, not to mention that a high percentage of the ’employees’ in the fireworks factories at Sivakasi are young girls. Being a woman does not prevent people from exploiting them in low paid, exhausting and dangerous jobs.

          Like

        • The “glass floor” is mostly a matter of traditional gender-roles, not law. That’s true for the glass-ceiling too: it’s not *law* that prevents women from becoming CEO as often as men, but rather medieval outdated gender-norms.

          And it’s also not law which prevents women from ending up with those jobs which have the highest risk of killing you, perhaps with the exception of the military where women where excluded for a long time, and still are in some jurisdictions. But the next 9 jobs on the list of top-ten-deadly-jobs are ALSO universally male-dominated, despite there in most cases being no law that prevents women from taking these jobs.

          Like

        • Actually, the examples I gave you routinely use women as labourers. Breaking rocks leads to all kinds of lung disorders as well as injuries. This job is mainly done by women as a tradition in some parts of India. There is a documentary on these women. Besides, I have SEEN women all over the place doing this kind of scary stuff. Of course, it is an indicator of poverty than of gender issue to me, but it also means that the idea that women are traditionally excluded from dangerous jobs is not true.

          Like

        • I admire and love both you and Fem and your tireless efforts to advance the cause of feminism in India. I agree with you about this goal.

          Nevertheless, it would not hurt you to admit that despite the fact that women are discriminated against a LOT more than men these days, both at home and in the workplace, despite this, examples exist of areas where statistically men are at greater risk.

          Being killed as a consequence of your work, is an example of such an area. Yes many women also have dangerous work, but this does not change the overall statistical picture. The statistics on this issue are very clear. The differences are big (typically a factor of 5-10) and consistent. We can disagree about matters of opinion, but this issue is not one of opinion, but one of fact.

          And if you look at the actual statistics for work-related deaths, then it is clear that in actual fact, men are much more likely to be killed in work-related accidents. That’s not opinion, that is fact.

          In wealthier nations, the differences tend to be even bigger, not smaller. For example in USA in 2003 (yes I know, but I couldn’t find fresher data) a full 93% of the people who died at work where male.

          Like

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