By the looks of what’s happening in India, it seems the real fight of the Narendra Modi government’s supporters is with the women. Bollywood actor Deepika Padukone’s visit to JNU rattled them. She didn’t make any statement but her act of meeting JNUSU president Aishe Ghosh exploded like a time bomb. Social media only had abuses for Deepika. It resorted to character assassination and used its biggest weapon to do that: a list of Deepika’s former lovers.
Renowned Hindi writer Krishna Sobti said about her romantic relationships, during an interview, that she had never had the bad fortune of having only one lover in her life. This response should make it clear for the supporters of Modi government that a 21st century woman isn’t just quick-witted but also recognises her political and economic power. She has the ability to change the world on her own. She won’t hesitate to speak in favour or against of an ideology.
The Modi government’s supporters also couldn’t understand that Deepika Padukone’s silent solidarity was like an ancient warrior’s act who just stands quietly and realises her strength. All they could do, in response, was abuse her. But can you scare a woman by abuse?
It’s time to understand the changing political consciousness of women. Until a few years ago, mothers and grandmothers could name only Indira Gandhi as a political symbol. It was not that there weren’t enough women in politics before, but ordinary women were not politically active the way they are now.
Following CAA and NRC protests, women across the country have openly voiced their views. And they come from all walks of life. Be it business tycoon Kiran Mazumdar Shaw or Bollywood actors Swara Bhasker, Richa Chadda, Taapsee Pannu, Parineeti Chopra, Chitrangada Singh, Deepika Padukone, Sonakshi Sinha, Instagram stars or the women from Shaheen Bagh — everyone has voiced their protest openly. These are women from every section of society, every caste and religion. They are unhappy with the culture of violence in India and the political parties need to wake up fast.
This is the first time women of India are not waiting for a woman or a feminist man to lead them. All these women who have stood up today are leaders in their respective fields and they are aware of their power. One film actor clearly said that with more power comes more responsibility. Not only are these women contributing to India’s growth with their economic success, but they are also motivating the youth with their political awareness.
In the last five years, a new class has emerged on social media in support of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). This class counters every voice raised in opposition to the Modi government with abuses. And if there are abuses, then obviously it will be against women. Even if their target is a male, the abuses are still aimed at the women of his family. But there’s another class that has emerged at the same time – that of women.
Women in homes who had no one to listen to their political views found space on social media. If they did not like the policies of the Modi government, they spoke up. But the supporters of the government had only one response – abuses. They abused them wholeheartedly, thinking they will force the women into silence.
Abuse is their only response
But what do men want to prove by abusing the organ that has created the entire humankind? The fraud of ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ and ‘Yatra Narayastu Poojayante’ is for everyone to see. It has been proven that men do not have the ability to even talk to women. Men repeat these pleasant slogans to hide their frustration; similarly, the Modi government’s policy has made a weapon out of slogans like ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’. Nothing compensates the filthy abuses hurled at women under the guise of these good slogans.
Get off the throne, women are coming. These are not weak women carrying clothes wrapped in a bundle asking for directions; these are women who understand their power and strength. Your politics are of the old, rotten patriarchal kind. The politics of these women is futuristic. You should remember that in Finland, a 34-year-old woman has become the prime minister. It’s Finland’s education system that every country is talking about emulating, not yours.
Gradually, every system will be reversed. All crowns will be tossed, all tables will be turned. Women, with their hair swirling about them, do not aspire for a crown; for them, the pride on their face is the crown of power.
This article has been translated from Hindi. Read the original here.
Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it
India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.
But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.
ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.