“Admire women seeking access to Shani temple. Hinduism threatened by gender/caste bias & superstition, not Islam/Christianity. Needs reform”
As it so happens, the above mentioned words weren’t tweeted by Kamaal R Khan but a prominent journalist and one of the pall bearers of Indian Journalism, Shekhar Gupta, fondly referred to by many as ‘Coupta.’ The tweet was so horrendous and so devoid of Intellect and Basic Common Sense, I couldn’t stop myself from asking the man if he was normally this retarded or was it a Republic Day Special. Unfortunately, my tweet did not elicit any response and I couldn’t find the answer to the mystery behind such an audacious claim.
Everyone knows Muslim Women are one of the most oppressed people worldwide. It doesn’t take an IQ of Albert Einstein’s levels to realize this fact. Their plight is horrific by Civilized Standards in most Islamic Countries and they are considerably better off in Secular countries and even in India. In India, however, their safety and Human Rights have been compromised by Political Parties catering to the most Orthodox section among the Muslims for their Vote Bank. But due to the Indian Constitution, the Muslim Women’s plight is not as bad as it is, for example, in Pakistan.
As I have repeatedly mentioned in a few of my previous articles, a women’s football match was cancelled in Malda because the Islamic Clerics deemed it unIslamic and issued a Fatwa against it. I cannot remember the incident sparking any sort of Outrage among our Bleeding Heart Liberals, for reasons obvious, and the cause of women was not fought for even by the Feminists of our age.
Also, one must care to remember the gross travesty of Women Rights that Shah Bano was subjected to. Even after the Supreme Court ruling in her favor, Rajiv Gandhi overturned the SC decision which granted her alimony from her divorced husband. The Muslim Community then came down heavily on Shah Bano and declared that she was not eligible for Alimony as it was against the Personal Laws of Muslims. And it says a lot about the misogyny that Muslim Women have to face every day of their lives that the Supreme Court ruled that Muslim women, like all others, were eligible for Alimony until they remarried only in 2009.
Another instance is the Minimum Marriageable Age for Women set at 18 by the Supreme Court of India. It was vehemently opposed by certain sections of the Muslim Community when it was brought into effect and continues to be opposed by many sections citing the law as infringing on the Religious rights of Muslim Women. The Muslims opposing the law can very well cite specific verses from the Scriptures to further their point and they even have the guts to claim the law doesn’t take into account the ‘Cultural Differences’ between the Women. In spite of the Supreme Court mandate, there seems to be a lot of confusion about the Marriageable Age of Muslim Women even in the Judiciary with the Gujarat High Court ruling in 2014 that Muslim Women can legally marry once they have turned 15. So basically, we are faced with a situation where Muslim Women continue to face persecution because of the existence of Separate Civil Laws for Muslims.
While it needs to be said that Child Marriage is a social evil we have moved away from, only one Community can mount a serious legal defence for it by virtue of its Separate Laws which are still not very clear. The fact of the matter is Child Marriage has scriptural sanction in Islam and eradicating it therefore makes the task much more difficult with their own set of Separate Civil Laws. Hence, to claim that Hinduism is faced with Gender bias and needs reform and not Islam is stupidity of the highest order.
The Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan, with 70000 members across 13 states, recently wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for reforms in the Muslim Personal Laws. In their letter, the women cite their research with a sample size of 4710 Muslim women in which 92.1% said they wanted a total ban on Triple Talaq; 91.7% were opposed to polygamy and 83.3% women said codification of Muslim family law would help Muslim women get justice.
Disgusting and appalling it is that when Muslim women do not even have Equal Rights in Property matters and have to tolerate Polygamy and other such evils that Liberals have the audacity to claim Hindu women not being allowed to enter certain sections of the Temple and certain Temples is the bigger problem.
Another blatant symbol of oppression of Muslim Women which has been turned into a symbol of Women Empowerment by certain Liberals and given a free pass by most is the Burqa and the Hijab. I am not saying all Muslim women regard the Burqa as oppressive but there’s a considerable percentage among them which does find them oppressive and are forced to wear the same because of Social Pressure and the fear of inciting violence from certain groups. The fact is the Liberals are so busy defending the right of Muslim women to wear the Burqa that their efforts are pitiably shallow when it comes to the defense of those who do not want to wear the clothes.
When Conservatives say liberals have lost the plot against Islamism, we mean they end up supporting the wrong kind of Muslims every single time. It would have helped greatly had the Mainstream Media and other bastions of Liberalism actively supported the cause of the Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan. We are doing a great disservice to the most oppressed class of citizens in our country when we say Islam does not need reformation. It’s an obvious fact that Islam does need reformation, does need to come to terms with that fact that we are living in the 21st century and not the 7th.
I find it outrageous that the same people who scream for the rights of Hindu Women to enter Temples do not even spend a breath in promoting the right of Muslim Women to enter Mosques. How horrible is it that Muslim Women cannot enter the Holy Place of their own Religion and still not attract the slightest bit of support from people who claim to fight for Women Rights?
The fact of the matter is more needs to be done to be improve the plight of Muslim women and this phony outrage over Women Rights while ignoring the hardships the most oppressed people in India have to face will not end well for anybody. And it’s high time we start focusing on the actual matters of Women Empowerment rather than those which only feeds into the Cacophony and Outrage over the silliest issues which has gripped the nation.
Featured Image Credits: news24online.com