Hosted by Sunday Fiction at https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2017/11/19/sunday-photo-fiction-19-november-2017/
GREAT INDIAN BAN PARTY-
Playing at a theatre near you
By Neel Anil Panicker
A ghoonghtaless brave Rajput princess bedecked in mesmerizing regal wear, prancing around in her own magnificent gold bedecked palace courtyard, dancing her heart out in gay abandon, her swirling lehanga swishing wildly in huge concentric circles while her dainty hennaed hands rise up to the skies above, her beautiful kohl-lined eyes sparkling with divine love, her lips a prayer, ever seeking blessings for the earthlings below.
Or, a near desperate woman forced to step out of her home in search of her ‘missing’ husband, overnight losing her moniker Goddess Durga; instead finding herself metamorphosed into a mere object of man’s lascivious predatory instincts.
Still another, bogged down by the vicissitudes of fate, compelled by the dire need to keep body and soul together, sheds her clothes under the harsh glare of arc lights, only to rejoin her starving family of five including a paralytic father and three mother-less younger siblings, their hollowed eyes hooked onto to the bread crumbs that she clutches in her hands, her paltry wages of the day.
Disturbing, uneasy, uncomfortable… is that what these images evoke in us?
Yes, and that’s because it’s we, the male of the human species, who decide the status of women in this world. It’s we who decide whether women are to be revered or reviled.
For us, especially, the men of India, women are a binary.
It’s easy slotting them. They are either good or bad, the compartmentalization arrived at from the periscope of our ever vigilant male eyes.
We decide who is to be worshipped and who is to be crucified; we decide who is to be hailed as a princess and a goddess, and who is to be hauled to be coals and branded a witch, a siren, or a slot. It is we and we alone that decides who is a good woman and who is a bad one.
And woe betide anyone who dares to defy us, challenge us, question our unquestionable hegemony over all such matters.
We vow to throttle all such voices; swear to ban, burn and bust them, crush them to pulp__all ye ‘uncultural voices’.
Such pests must best be put to rest.
Long live the Indian male, long live India, the India of our dreams, the India of our vision, the India of only our vision.
©NEELANILPANCIKER2017 #358WORDS #PADMAVATI #BAN #THEMOVIE #RAJPUTKARNISENA #SATIRE
Note: I have slightly deviated and written a longre non-fictional piece as i felt this is a story that needed to be told in the present context that is playing out in India. Hope you shall forgive me for this rather off beat, long piece.