I have not read of any recent protests against widows being forced (directly or indirectly) to take off symbols of matrimony (colours, jewellery, make up) – but this event was found objectionable by some.
The display of symbols of matrimony plays a part in the process that pressurises women to Get Married, or become a Suhagan, and then to Stay a Suhagan. It’s not enough for women to get married, and stay married, they also must Stay Suhagan. While it is no longer legal to burn a widow alive, women in traditional communities, are still under pressure to make sure that their spouse outlives them.
What do you think of this news? I believe these small steps are great for starting a conversation, about what is, for a majority of Indians, a taboo topic – in fact it’s so taboo, it’s not even a topic.
The easier way to deal with all such symbols is I think for women to wear or reject/ignore them irrespective of their marital status. Married women not wearing these symbols or single women wearing them would render the symbol useless – because then they fail to serve the purpose they have been created for.
And the easiest, I think, is for married women to stop wearing them.
What do you think?
CHENNAI: Terming the “thali” or “mangalsutra”, traditionally worn around the neck by married Hindu women as long as their spouses are alive, a symbol of slavery or oppression, 21 married women discarded it at a function organised by Tamil outfit Dravidar Kazhagam here on Tuesday.
… According to DK, the event got over even before a division bench of the Madras High Court issued a stay order on the function.
The DK announced the “thali” removal programme after protests by Hindu Munnani against television channel Puthiya Thalaimurai over its proposed programme on women wearing “thali”.
The Tamil TV channel later cancelled the programme but two tiffin box bombs of low intensity were thrown at the channel’s office.
Several Hindu organisations had opposed the DK’s “thali” removal programme.
Tying a “thali” or “mangalsutra” by the groom around the brides neck is a major custom in Hindu weddings. A woman removes the “thali” only on the death of her husband.
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Ditched the dupatta, chucked the chunni – Starry eyed