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What The Internet Gave The Kerala Man (Apart From Porn)

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By Sandhya Menon:

I am often at the receiving end of, “Oh but you are a Malayalee. You come from a matriarchal society,” when I talk about anything from feminism to food preferences. I take great pains to correct that statement. I patiently start with correcting the term (matrilineal, and not matriarchal), then I gently point out there’s just one community in Kerala that was so, and that Kerala has many communities, along with the usual mix of religions. I then ask, what does that have to do with the price of fish. Because, while in some ways it might be empowering and perspective ­altering to receive your mother’s name, and her property (technically, traditionally it is the maternal uncle’s property that used to get passed down to his nephews and nieces among Nairs), for all practical purposes, a household used to be run by a man, usually the maternal uncle, who decided everyone’s fate. Matrilineality, therefore, in my observation helped with one aspect of independence and liberation: financial security. But it did nothing to empower Nair women with self confidence, that is needed to get out of an oppressive relationship that she could be enduring in the domestic sphere.

Laying that down as a context, I shall zoom out a little, and look at the larger Kerala with its rich, textured, and varied ethnic groups, and communities. With a society that’s arguably progressive and educated, ­ Kerala is a place where this structure sustains patriarchy. At an immediate glance, this is as surprising and confounding as it is deep rooted. In a state where Communism (whatever its avatar today) thrives, where women work just as hard as men, ­if not harder, to sustain their families, the incongruity of the existence of male chauvinism and blatant patriarchy worries and fascinates me. If educated and financially independent women struggle for justice, safety and equality, then what hope do those without the above­ mentioned privileges have?

The evidence of a sexually repressed and frustrated people is all over Kerala. On the streets, on TV, and online. Take the streets, for instance. Young women, and sometimes not-so-young-women get flashed at regularly. I bet a whole lot of women in Erna-­flasher­central-­kulam, have seen their first erection right in the middle of a busy street, on a dreary old work day. Fathers still decide how the women in their family will behave, husbands still stay a mile away from child care, and running a home. I regularly hear women in my age bracket say if they wear a (moderately) low­cut blouse with their sari, their husbands will “pack them off”. It is said with laughter and camaraderie, but it isn’t a joke at all. ‘Decent’ married women don’t do things their husbands don’t like. ‘Decent’ single women don’t do things their fathers and brothers don’t like. Anyone who decides to not be ‘decent’ has then crossed over to the slut territory. I suppose this could be said for the rest of India.

Enter TV presenter and actress Ranjini Haridas. A 30 ­something presenter, who very successfully anchored a reality talent show for six years, on Asianet, a Malayalam TV channel. Ranjini Haridas is possibly little known outside Kerala, and so is the hate that she inspires. People of both genders criticise what they see as inauthentic – her heavily anglicised Malayalam, which is Haridas’ trademark, a chip she wears proudly on her shoulder. She is quoted as having said in an interview that the few years she spent in the U.K. as a Masters student were responsible for her forgetting her Malayalam (I can’t verify the authenticity of this statement). That may have been a young woman’s knee jerk reaction, wet behind the ears, as she was, to the criticism she received (in droves) when she first began hosting the show. But over time, more and more interviews quoted her as saying that she didn’t care for what people said, this is the way she chose to speak and that was the end of it.

She wasn’t spared, pilloried on mimicry shows (a still ­hugely popular genre in Kerala); blatantly and publicly told off, by respected senior actors; guests on her own show, and other women anchors, have all taken potshots at her. She’s a classic template for poking merciless fun at girls who decided to be ‘modern’.

Men hated her. But the women, ah, here was a fascinating story unfolding. Young women, ripe for rebellion and finding their wings, all over Kerala, felt here was something they could point to in case of a crisis – “If she can, I can”. Haridas wore sleeveless clothes, body­con dresses, knee­length shifts, off the shoulder blouses, see­-through ensembles, stuff that no anchor had worn on Malayalam T.V. hitherto; she experimented with her hair with high glamour; she didn’t shy away from adventurous make up; she wore exactly what her free little heart desired, and she did it with confidence, not letting criticism against her clothing, or her speech, cramp her style in the least bit. Men kept hating, she kept working, laughing all the way to the bank in her designer high heels.

She was in stark contrast to the Malayalee TV presenters, who had bored the hell out of viewers till then. These women wore a look of innocence, a certain freshness one associates with the ‘untouched’. Their makeup was traditional, with pink (ish) lipstick, and kohl-­lined eyes, made up and yet not so much that it would make an impact. Their hair was tucked away in demure braids, or in a little bun at the nape of the neck, and imprisoned in jasmine. These presenters didn’t use their hands much, and smiled idiotically a lot. They were a vision, a girl-­you-­gawk­-at-­in-­a-­temple vision. Beautiful, efficient and tameable; completely devoid of impact, a threat to none of the men who ogled, and aspirational for none of the women these men lived with.

If a channel was targeting a younger crowd, you’d find young women dressed in jeans and a perfectly unremarkable top, with requisite hair and makeup, and a personality that was even more unremarkable than the T-shirt. Usually, there was a guy who co­-hosted, and hogged all the air time.

You see, us Malayalee women look down on those who wear make up, although we secretly wish we could carry it off too. We think we are natural beauties (and I must admit some are), and to do anything with a tube of lipstick is to enter the slut category. So, most girls from middle class homes will wear lipstick on an occasion, and blot it till it very nearly disappears, because ‘good girls don’t wear lipstick’. (For those of you who are going to come at me saying “but I have Keralite friends who aren’t like that,” I am going with a middle class majority here. Not those who have lived in cosmopolitan places, or cities outside Kerala.) Until a few years ago, we didn’t wax our limbs; not because we believe in our feminist right to do what the hell we want with our body hair, but because salons are the dens of the devil. You could end up in a porn video on the internet if you went to a salon. I suspect that isn’t the case in the bigger places in Kerala, like a Cochin or Trivandrum, or Trichur, but most of Kerala still believes a salon will sell you off to pimps. And even those who do go to a salon, and get all smooth, tend to do it very quietly. It’s not a thing we’re comfortable talking about.

It was into the households of these women, that Haridas with her open hair, loud laughter, gender­ irrespective hugs reached. With her ‘beauty ­contest­ winner’ title, her U.K. masters degree, and a sense of fashion that was more confidence than style ­which, I suppose, is true style. Suddenly, there were Haridas clones all over Malayalam TV. Open hair, clothes that edged away the ornate salwar kameez, or the graceful sari. Suddenly, and hilariously, perfectly ordinary girls were speaking Malayalam like it was a foreign tongue; and men were mercilessly skewering them over it; women were touching and hugging boys on screen, and bantering with celebrities without the usual deferential tone. Just like Haridas. Just like normal young women do off camera. And men hated it.

Till my mother recently pointed it out to me, I didn’t realise how much of a Haridas non-­supporter I am. My mother, a woman of great wisdom and gentle confidence, is pro-­Haridas. My objection is simple: I don’t like that she has distanced herself from her mother tongue, but that comes only second to the fact that she does it in the most inauthentic way. My mother’s reasons are also simple: she loves the show, and says no one can carry it off as engagingly as Haridas. And that she lives exactly how she pleases, no matter what the rest of the world says.

This conversation led my mother to direct me to a Haridas fan page on Facebook. A regularly updated, selfie­ heavy, hate­ filled page. If that woman (Ranjini Haridas I mean, not my mother) reads the comments on a regular basis, and still continues to post as she does, she has all my respect and then some. Because, OMG, there’s an army of perverted, hateful and angry men, spewing venom there, doing whatever they can – from calling her a slut in different ways (I had no idea how many words Malayalam had for slut) to offering her a screw, so she’d ease off.

They abuse her ancestry, they call her a ‘slut’, a ‘corpse’, a ‘cunt’. a ‘eunuch’, ‘ugly’. I was repulsed by almost 700 comments collectively, in the first few posts on her page. (I didn’t see any threats of rape, the favourite hate­ tool men use to intimidate women online, thankfully.) But the sheer volume of hate, and all from men, was appalling, and fascinating. Why were all these men hating her? A middle aged man called her the South Indian Sunny Leone (because a porn star is not an actor but a ‘whore’, correct?), going on to abuse her in Hindi, English and Malayalam, so great was his objection. Another one posted a picture of a firecracker, the Malayalam word for which is apparently colloquialism for, guess what? Yep, whore. They leave no aspect of her untouched – ­her makeup, who she is with in the picture, her clothes, her smile, teeth, even her being single, or being raised by her mother, having lost her father early. She’s ripped apart like a carcass in a butcher’s shop would, if you let a hungry mob in.

This one, for instance, has a misspelt speech bubble to make it sound like Haridas’ Malayalam. It basically says, “I know very little Malayalam.”


Or this, where the insults are heaped high, all basically tiresomely calling her a whore (or a variation of it), or old, or ugly, including a comment with a picture of her with an African person, an intended insult I am afraid to explore.


This one below basically asks her to die, now that she’s old (she isn’t 35 yet.) The comment below that is captioned “who is prettier?”


And this below is our firecracker guy. Under which is a private photo of Haridas that went viral a few years ago, and brought her under another deluge of filth.



In reply to this, and much much more such harassment, Haridas posted this on voting day recently, telling her detractors exactly what she thought of them, in classic tongue-in-­cheek Ranjini style. (The comments on this one heap more abuse, more firecracker, more I’ll fuck you, more ‘you ­ugly­ whore’ hate.)


I decided to explore a little and checked out the pages of other presenters/actors/professional celebrities who are women in other places. I found very little abuse, very little misogyny, addressed to those in the public eye. My observation is that harassment and misogyny are directed more at regular, non-celebrity folk. Posting numbers, abusive language, lewd comments, direct hate are all directed mostly at women, who aren’t in the public eye. But in the fan pages of actresses/models/TV personalities, there was more empty adulation, than outright misogyny. There’s the odd deviant pimping his services, or some creep posting a name and number of a girl, but this kind of rampant bile, this kind of utter disrespect was rare, if not almost absent.

To me, it says many things, this hatred from men in Kerala – young and old, educated and not, married or single. The insults are almost always sexual in nature, the language is highly disrespectful, (apart from being abusive itself): the use of nee, the informal word for ‘you’ in Malayalam is the only way she’s addressed. Her lack of hypocrisy is another source of anger. Unlike many women who care about their reputations, Ranjini Haridas tends to live life candidly and if that threatens the Malayalee men, then so be it.

The way I see it, the anger these men feel is directed at her for being happily single, even though she’s … gasp… nearly 35! Anger at her being unfazed by the barrage of biting criticism, at her completely normal way of behaving even on screen (she hugs, touches, gesticulates, and uses her body freely the way you and I do). The anger is towards her success – six years of calling her a whore and she’s still the top rated, and possibly the highest­ paid anchor in Kerala. The anger is towards her completely ignoring the very men that hate her; they just can’t seem to get a rise out of her. But I think the thing that threatens them most is that she is an inspiration. She is what a lot of their daughters, sisters and wives would like to become – glamorous, articulate, successful, confident and assertive. Everything that these men don’t want in their women, lest they get left behind; lest they get dragged to a police station for raising a hand; lest their women leave them after finding self ­worth.

If I were to say just the way that Haridas dresses and talks is what’s causing the outpouring of misogyny, to anyone who looks at it superficially, I might be right. But if you look around, and see another instance of hate, I’d be proved wrong. Manju Warrier, arguably one of Malayalam cinema’s best actresses, returned to acting after 14 years of staying away from the industry. She had a daughter with her actor husband who incidentally continued to act with women half his age. She made a home and never gave a single interview in all the years she was in the background.

Last year, she has separated from her husband, and has made no public statements about her marital situation. Her husband, actor Dileep, has gone on record to say he doesn’t like women working after marriage, while all these years he insisted it was Warrier’s choice to give up acting at the height of her successful career. Their daughter, a teenager, lives with the father.

Warrier, too, has a Facebook page that updates her fans about her news. She posts happy personal pictures, pictures of her shoots, travels and messages about causes, and yet the hate spews. As she fits better into the mould women are expected to fit in Kerala, the language is a lot more toned down. Clearly, having been married and proving to the world you are fertile is a cause for people to be more respectful when they talk. And because Haridas dresses the way she does, and talks more English than Malayalam, and basically flips everyone off, she deserves to be spoken to disrespectfully.

The hate on Warrier’s page manifests itself differently; she’s called a bad mother on the basis of the interview her husband gave in a woman’s magazine. She is wished ill ­luck with her come­back film; she is condemned for leaving her marriage, and her husband, a man whom much of Kerala adores and considers a great actor. Outside of these three things, apparently, Warrier doesn’t exist or rather, shouldn’t exist. Women too join this criticism of her, openly posting judgemental comments on what they think of her decision to leave her husband, criticising her bitterly for being ‘negligent’ of her daughter, for seemingly classifying fame, career, and money, higher than her daughter and husband. Mind you, all this while not knowing anything else, but that the two are separated.

There’s scores of advice on the page of this 36­ year­ old artiste, urging her to go back to her husband, to stop being selfish, to ‘realise’ that beauty, fame and wealth won’t last forever. The denigration is endless, and by the looks of it, hugely one ­sided. You see, Dileep’s fan pages are full of people kowtowing to his talent, looking forward to his new films, and the usual fanboy drivel. No advice to him on his personal life at all. Even newspaper reports have been inherently sexist in reporting any developments on the divorce/separation.

This duplicity emerges repeatedly in Kerala, in conversations and in the mainstream media, and now internet hate. It’s okay for a woman to work, bring home money and support, either single ­handedly or as a second income, her family. But the minute a woman decides to pursue a career, she’s just turned into the devil. The second income (in some cases the only income), she brings in is very welcome, but not the success, or the sacrifices that she has to make. Among all the different kinds of men I’ve met, no one hates a woman’s success more than a certain kind of Malayalee man.

I started this off as an internet hate piece against men in Kerala, the internet as a new place to flash and wave figurative penises at women they cannot go anywhere close to. Successful, dignified, articulate women who threaten their glaringly obvious chauvinistic attitudes. Internet hate towards women in the public eye isn’t particularly new, and takes on different forms, as Amanda Hess’s explosive essay earlier this year in the Pacific Standard illustrated. But the issues in Kerala that lead to what is clear misogyny, are so much more, that I had to digress a little.

The truths that this kind of internet misogyny reveals to me are scary: Malayalee young men continue to be sexually frustrated; traditionally thought to be a sexually permissive society, Kerala, in the last few decades, has seen a huge change in morality, with patriarchal attitudes towards sex becoming more prevalent, where virginity as a virtue is priced highly, and sex is seen as corruption.

If these men are a sampling of most men in Kerala, then it would seem that Malayalee men are inherently crude, disrespectful, and have no finer sensibilities with regard to equality, individuality, racism or sexuality. But perhaps the most disturbing thing of all, to me, is the fact that all this is juxtaposed with education. That it exists in a society that for decades has upheld socialist values of equality and respect between genders. How does one reconcile the two? What is the point of education if it hasn’t helped you cultivate respect for the girls you go to school with? How badly has education failed us, if men still consider sex and sexual insults the best way to attack a woman? Authors and artists, both male and female, have stood at the forefront of progressive feminist attitudes, writing, art and debate.

Why has education failed to integrate their work and contribution towards building a society, that is more respectful towards women?

NOTE: This article was originally published on the author’s personal blog.

You must be to comment.
  1. Rosemary

    Well written 🙂

    1. Harsh

      Wow, what an article !! The topic, the research, the writing itself.

      Also, hats off to you ma’am, bringing this on a media forum.

  2. findingfeminism

    Awesome write up!! It is hard on ambitious women for sure.. But there needs to be a change.. Things should not remain the way they are!!

    1. Raghul

      people are taught to follow, not to think.. this is just a proof that, not every person in India got served the same nectar.

      I am very interested to know the purpose of this article.(even I couldn’t read it, I judged it by the title pictures and comments ): hint:sarcasm

      wow!! you just proved that MEN are RAPISTS.

      a more suited title is: Frusrtated men comments on Ranjini, even though she gets the fact and is so cool with it!!! I am offended, because if I am in her skin, I will cry. (yes, this is a long title but, pretty much covers the whole story)

      you know, I can easily turn this article in reverse. ask me, HOW?
      what is the role of women as a mother? think about it.
      if men are FRUSTRATED, then that shows the FAILURE of women as a MOTHER, a WIFE, a SISTER,a TEACHER.

      ps: MATA( mother) is considered as the prime influence in a humans life.( in hindu scriptures). so, this means mothers are failures.

      empower the women to become a better mother instead of blaming men for being an a..hole.

      what I exactly want to say is “Bitches makes Assholes.” so stop being a …

      the final judgement should be always after hearing the two parties.
      and this is very one sided.

    2. You’reStupid.

      You are exactly the kind of person she is talking about in the article. I hope you are proud.

    3. Abhijit

      Wow, you just proved her point!
      Just take a moment and try and understand the writer’s angst. Also it’s not the case where she has completely absolved women in the failure of society. She has certainly raised her concerns over the women who have engaged in perpetuating misogynistic ideas, over the internet. It’s not just the men but the failure of the society to have a very basic sense of decency

    4. Beatch!

      Are you for real ?? I find it hard to believe that someone so stupid actually exists !

    5. Dilip

      This is one of the weirdest comments i have ever seen. So if a man is wrong, dont just blame him. Blame the fact that the women around him werent “good enough” mother/sister/wife/daughter etc.? Hmmm. Interesting. So the father/ brother/son of the man and GASP – the man himself are so “spine-less” and “brain-less” that it takes the women around him to make him what he is? I think you may be such a man but i’d rather be a my own man – who takes responsibility for himself and not blame anyone (man or woman) for my failures.

    6. Sugar_daddy

      Ha ha ha i was going to dump a load of ice cold water on ur head,so u can cool it off.. u feel offended buddy, so am i. but this is not the way to show it. ur points should be reasonable other wise u will be mocked

    7. aisha

      You are the perfect example of a sexually frustrated malayalee man. Get a life and learn to respect women

    8. TheWorldIsShittyBecauseOfYou

      Hahaha. You Asshole.

    9. Shabana

      Really?? Are you joking or do you enjoy being the exact text book version of men the author was talking about? Apparently,commonsense ain’t so common and so is respect for women( who are not just baby-making machines)

    10. Arjun

      wooooaahhh , am i surprised or
      Shocked or is it because your one of those pathetic men , she was talking about . Are you for real , you are an insult to the whole race of men . I am a keralite , i am a man and im disgusted and feel sorry for my own people! and how dare you talk about motherhood when you yourself has got no self respect or self respect . Come on man, its 2015 and still you find it hard growing up !!

    11. Aman

      Now calm down…you don’t want to blame your mother just because you turned out to be an a@%%&@ like this as you suggested in the comment…. Or are you really…. Hahhahhaa.. U are indeed a coward blaming men’s behaviour on women around them..try to take a man…

  3. Aravind

    Strongly written, Sandhya. Much appreciated,

    Interestingly, in spite of all this, Ranjini continues to be one of the most sought after anchors in Malayalam. And, Manju Warrier’s come back film (and a brilliant one at that) was a big hit. Yes, heights of hypocrisy! Or may be, on an optimistic note, a majority of good souls over these hate-spewing morons. May hope prevail…

    On your closing note, Kerala claims 100% Literacy, not education. I believe we have a long way to go for the latter.

  4. Mickie Menon

    Love, love, LOVE this article! It talks about everything I believe to be true about the hypocritical middle class Kerala community. It’s not just the men though- the majority of women subscribe to these stagnant ‘values’ and preconceived notions. I guess change is a scary concept.

  5. Shyam Madhavan Sarada

    Absolutely spot on! The men of Kerala seem to be caught in a perpetual state of regression, even as the world moves forward. Unfortunately, the majority of women too, keep them company. The ones that ‘don’t fit in’ leave the godforsaken place… God’s Own Country has no saviour!

    The women who stay and fight, like Ranjini, are truly liberated women. Someday, and one can only hope, the rest of the women in the state will find some spark of enlightenment that will show them that stepping out of their comfort zone is necessary to make any change. The men? Hopeless.

    Let the trolling begin!

    1. Seema

      Thank you for noting that women are also to blame for not supporting and worse, instigating hate against other women who want to live their lives on their own terms. I don’t know if it is fear or envy that prompts women towards being hurtful to women who choose to be different.

  6. ravi

    I agree that keralites have looks and education. But there are very successful mallus mostly outside Kerala. As far as the anchor is concerned I dont know why so much importance is given to her either in the article or on TV , she looks very ordinary ( ofcourse she can be talented)
    I will suggest this to a few of mallu girl friends and would see their reaction. And manju mam way to go.

  7. neil george

    Dear Sandhya,
    A very well written piece but as in all one sided pieces of journalism, you make the mistake of banding all Malayali men in one little pigeon hole. So that you are aware, there are more than 15 million Malayali Males around the world and I find it disturbing that your piece describe all of them under one broad phrase. I hope to see your piece how you would describe the average Malayali so called oppressed woman. Be my guest and walk into any female hostel in or outside Kerala where we have a large number of female inmates.

    Key point I make is that paint the shades of grey lady, hey and don’t put Us into pure black and whites. It will do your journalistic skills some good.


    1. Bii

      Dear Neil,
      Refraining from getting defensive on behalf of the entire male community might do your sense of self some good as well. You can rip a good article for its semantics, but if you understand the gist of it, which I truly hope you have, you know she’s talking about a type – a type of men who do exist in millions. And the shades of grey are exactly what she’s talking about – our so called education mixed with old school chauvinism and misogyny. Picking on a detail and taking it out of context doesn’t make for a great argument. I hope, instead, you will see how warped the thinking of our society is and to not see women as rebels for doing what they want, and to simply see them as humans. (I don’t see any relevance to your point about female inmates, unless you feel like being descriptive).


    2. Ridhi

      Unfortunately the title reads “what internet gave the Kerala man (other than porn)”. And this article is currently trending in this website. What message does this headline and for that matter the entire gives to people from rest of India? It is pretty simple and require very little critical thinking. It tells people that mallu guys lack the character to accept a successful female. Stay away from them. And I can give u 25 screenshots to prove it.
      Nobody is taking it out of context. You can just try reading it by replacing the word men with women and see if it offends you. Because I think that is the only way women will understand how men feel about this article. If I write a similar article about women breaking up families, ending careers, exploiting men for money ( trust me there is news about these things on every newspaper almost every day. It is just not interesting enough to make front pages) will you argue that it is not defaming women? You simply cannot. Because the whole article is oriented that way. The very purpose of the article is exactly that. You know why you can’t see it? Because you don’t think that men can be targeted. They can never be the victim in your eyes. Because ladies being mistreated by men is the story you always heard, and men don’t give a rats ass about their declining position in the society and heavily biased laws. No one is supposed to stand up for men’s rights in this country. They are faceless villains who degrade women’s rights. Slowly and steadily through different legislations and loud mouthed thick skinned feminists men are being sidelined. I hope one day when people realize what equality is all about, they will understand that this is injustice to an entire gender.

    3. Meena

      Bwahaha, yeah I replaced the word men with women and you know what I am not surprised or hurt! Cuz its Kerala and shit like this happens there. narrow minded losers who leave their land and try to spread their hate and venom all over the world.
      Go back to your country really!

  8. TempleTwins

    Was Sunny Leone a whore? It is debatable as porn stars indeed get money for sex. I don’t know if Ms.Haridas is a whore but she clearly is an attention whore who is cashing on all the attention she gets by giving Keralites a cultural shock with a pretty face. Haridas wore sleeveless clothes, body­con dresses, knee­length shifts, off the shoulder blouses, see­through ensembles, stuff that no anchor had worn on Malayalam T.V and that unanimously makes her an attention whore and she got attention from unsavory individuals whom the author often said sexually repressed.

    Perhaps women from kerala could help their men from being sexually repressed by being all sex positive even to the commoner who they don’t have a second look. Then there could possibly be a cultural revolution, instead it is like going to parts of Africa where there is famine and you are having tasty burgers in front of them, saying it is your choice and freedom and it is not only deplorable but also unproductive and inhumane.

    1. Mike

      Thanks TempleTwin for your comment,,,, some has sense here … 🙂

    2. KB

      @TempleTwins & Mike – The article is intended for people (assholes) like you to change your attitude and manner, and i’m glad it is reaching out to you.
      You’re analogy of Burger in famine does not work here, living beings can’t be shared unlike a burger or food.
      And if being beautiful and being open about is her fault, the being and asshole (and possible not attractive enough) to get a women like her is your fault (coming from the burger analogy), so if you had a FB page i’d gladly pour my hate at you for being an asshole and ugly (coming from your burger analogy)

    3. Kerry

      Sleeveless clothes? The horror!!! Has the censor board heard about this? A woman? Wearing clothes? With no sleeves? On television? Clearly she’s up to no good. No, no my friends, we shan’t stand for such crass behaviour. Perhaps we should all band together and paint sleeves on the television sets in every good subcontinental household to ensure our minds aren’t perverted by the flagrant display of arms running rampant through our cable networks.

    4. TempleTwins

      The article is intended for attention whores who want to claim victim status for all the attention they get for being attention whores.
      Woman to a plastic surgeon :- I want my implants to be large enough so that I can become indignant when men stare at them.
      I wont be changing my attitude to hypocrites, I am a social critique and you won’t stop me until you censor me.

      You’re analogy of Burger in famine does not work here, living beings can’t be shared unlike a burger or food.
      That is debatable, there are individuals who are in an open relationship and there are gang bangs too, so to say that human beings can’t be shared sexually is very ignorant of you. If you know the number of partners an average woman has before she gets married you’d know what I am talking about.

      And if being beautiful and being open about is her fault, the being and asshole (and possible not attractive enough) to get a women like her is your fault.

      What makes you think I want someone like her? Besides women go for ugly men all the time if they treat them like spoilt entitled princess like they assume to be.

      By being all sex positive?” That statement, and the whole paragraph doesn’t even make rational sense.
      If you are sex positive you wouldn’t be so surprised seeing a cleavage because most women has them(excluding the flat chested ones), you won’t be surprised if women have multiple partners, you certainly won’t be surprised by seeing an erect penis. It’s all fine and dandy.

      YOU HATE THEM BECAUSE YOU AINT THEM! Looks like somebody watched ‘the interview’. I don’t hate them, to hate someone is to invest emotionally and they aren’t worthy of any.

    5. TheSeeker

      Gang bangs and open relationships are consensual. A burger does not have the mind to think that what is happening to it is unjust.

    6. TempleTwins

      Gang bangs and open relationships are consensual. A burger does not have the mind to think that what is happening to it is unjust.

      To say that human beings cannot be shared was illogical, now that we got that out of the way. The point being going a place which is sexually repressed and giving them a cultural shock with your attire and how you carry yourself would bring about people who would hate, envy, annoyed by you. That is exactly what Haridas faced.

      I don’t understand why u picked Africa when India has 269 million (or 22 percent) people under the poverty line..
      Nitpicking much? When was the last time India had a famine? I was giving that example for Indians being sexually repressed anyways and these scantly clad anchors rub it their eyes with their out right insolent behavior.

    7. Megha

      “By being all sex positive?” That statement, and the whole paragraph doesn’t even make rational sense.

    8. Bb

      I don’t understand why u picked Africa when India has 269 million (or 22 percent) people under the poverty line.. I am guessing you arehaving kanzhi and payare everyday if not u r as “bad”as these women and btw u r an IDIOT..

    9. TheSeeker

      Templetwins, may I know what your MBTI type is? Just curious.

    10. TempleTwins

      INTJ, cheers.

    11. TheSeeker

      Me too. Thank you ☺

    12. sachin

      Absolutely well said… This journalist is one among them… don’t blame the entire Kerala men as 1…. and I personally hates any attention seeks be it female or men… You hardly find such insane facebook comments when it comes to Shobana, Revathy actress etc… Even they had worn similar attires for movies.. but their attitude is different from those called fake attention seekers… and one last thing – these stuffs are not just limited to Kerala,,, you search for Paris hiliton photos – you can see more wierd comments from Westerners…

    13. Fem

      And there you go again….

      I stopped reading your comment after the 1st line – ‘Women judge the men all the time’. I didn’t even finish the sentence. Its not constructive to me or to this discussion if the only thing we do is generalize and close our minds to all possibilities and reasons.

      Signing off now. There’s only so much you can invest in a discussion. At some point you realize that the person is stubbornly set in his ways and spending anymore time on him is waste of your precious resources.

    14. Fem

      Sorry. The comment was for templetwin

    15. Nair

      Because women are nothing more than burgers or fast cars! People like you are a curse on society.

    16. TempleTwins

      I feel both men and women are objectified in different ways. If women are burgers, men are ATMs. Women in our society are still hypergamous, so regardless of how much they earn they still cash in on their vagina and their baby making abilities or else why would they marry up? Our laws says that men should maintain their wives financially even when they are no longer together and not copulating. So it simply says you had sex with this woman for so long when she was young now she can’t cash in on her vagina so you maintain her financially. People like me are a curse to the society? Perhaps it is the curse that this society deserves.

    17. TempleTwins

      I feel both men and women are objectified in different ways. If women are burgers, men are ATMs. Women in our society are still hypergamous, so regardless of how much they earn they still cash in on their vagina and their baby making abilities or else why would they marry up? Our laws says that men should maintain their wives financially even when they are no longer together and not copulating. So it simply says you had sex with this woman for so long when she was young now she can’t cash in on her vagina, so you maintain her financially. People like me are a curse to the society? Perhaps it is the curse that this society deserves.

    18. Fem

      If you think both men and women are objectified in this society and that it is wrong then stop doing it. Be the change you want to see.

    19. TempleTwins

      You tell your sistas to not objectify men fem. If you are successful let me know, I would tell my brothas to not to objectify women. Perhaps I am too cynical and I know we would simply take what we want and what we can and there is no end to pointing fingers at each other. We are at war and you are my enemy and there is no fraternizing with you.

    20. Fem

      Yes. You are too cynical.

      I don’t objectify men. My ‘sistas’ do not do that either. The ‘sistas’ I do not know, if I come across them doing it I do stand up to them to tell them not to do it because this is not logical or right or even beneficial to any party involved.

      The war, the way I see it is, created by you. So its only you who can stop it. I don’t want to go the preaching way but lets first stop putting gender into everything and then generalizing and then getting all frothy at the mouth. Lets start with ‘we are all human beings and we should all be treated equally and with respect’ regardless of gender, cast, creed, color, social status. Lets stop with we vs them. Once you can do that inside of you, you can start pointing fingers at others who are doing it. Till then its not constructive.

      And for the record – I do not consider you my enemy. I do not even know you. For all I know you may be the person sitting next to me in office with whom I go out for occasional drinks. But what I do consider is that your thinking pattern is completely different from mine and I only hope that you can see my way one day. Although I know its not going to happen.

    21. TempleTwins

      Women judge men all the time with the money they earn, the cloths they wear and the car they drive. When women stop being all ultra consumerist and materialistic in their world view, then perhaps the objectification of men would cease to exist, but we all know every parent out there and every women out there are interested in knowing how much you earn. Your value as a man is based on your usefulness to her is how society at large sees men.
      I probably don’t know you either but we are at war. I recognize that class war exist, you as a woman are trying to take away my human rights, my freedom, just so you can be more free, with your false campaign and the societies inherent gynocentric sympathy. The war is not started by me, we sure might end it. You just have to look at the laws and see where we stand already, in favor of women. This war has been going on for eons, the battle of the sexes, men telling women how they should be and women telling men how they should be, trying to restrict each other, use and manipulate each other. Women got an upper hand now by those fraternizing vote banking politicians, with UN oxfam on propagating on campaign which reeks on misandry and one-sided female victim narratives. You fem agreeing, that women are at worst which justifies your indifference to the other half of the population and the existence of one-sided laws. You can claim you are not in favor of it but what have you done to make it right? Just giving a lip service won’t do anything.

    22. Fem

      And there you go again….

      I stopped reading your comment after the 1st line – ‘Women judge the men all the time’. I didn’t even finish the sentence. Its not constructive to me or to this discussion if the only thing we do is generalize and close our minds to all possibilities and reasons.

      Signing off now. There’s only so much you can invest in a discussion. At some point you realize that the person is stubbornly set in his ways and spending anymore time on him is waste of your precious resources.

    23. TempleTwins

      I’ve said it before and I will say it again. Generalities exist, A bigot thinks there are no exceptions. An idiot thinks everyone is an exception. Your argument is subjective in nature, I am not like this so rest of the women must’ve be that way too. During olden days women weren’t allowed to speak in a public sphere for everything is subjective for them and can’t speak anything objectively. You are the one who is closing your ears now and going la la la.
      I don’t really care about those few good women who remain silent in this culture of gynocentic sympathizers, the most vocal ones are doing a disservice for all of you. I never asked you to address me, it is so typical of you, saying what you want and closing your ears and running from responses. You wanna change my opinions give me reasons not excuses.

    24. Fem

      I don’t wanna change your opinion. You flatter yourself when you think you are my sole focus in life.

      As long as giving reasons are concerned, I have done that many times on different articles. You are not open to them. A reasonable man discusses. A hater spreads hate.

      Please don’t change. Stay the way you are. I love to see you seethe and stew in your own hate.

    25. Fem

      “Your argument is subjective in nature, I am not like this so rest of the women must’ve be that way too.”

      By the way, my argument was never this. That all women are like this or that. This is what *you* say. What I was trying to tell you that its not the case. The world is made up of all kind of people and that they exist in both gender. I do not even know how many times I must have stated my position. But that never reaches anywhere.

      So lets talk about “A bigot thinks there are no exceptions. An idiot thinks everyone is an exception.”

      What are you? An idiot or bigot?

      I think this is the last time I am counter-commenting on any of your comments. Talking to you is not productive anymore.

    26. TempleTwins

      I don’t wanna change your opinion. You flatter yourself when you think you are my sole focus in life.
      I never claimed that I am the sole focus of your life, I don’t flatter myself that way. But regardless you commented on my opinion and when I discussed how the majority of the society is, you want to shut your ears, end the discussion and go away because you would rather be in your ignorant bubble, than to accept the nature of human beings and be a realist.

      You are not open to them. A reasonable man discusses. A hater spreads hate.
      I am as open minded as it gets but that doesn’t mean I am a conformist. Like one of those wishy washy sheeple who follow the crowd. Courses such a womens studies often view the world in the eyes of how a certain thing affects women socially and culturally. Now when I see a tragedy and point out how it affected boys, you were like ‘oh no why do you see gender in dead bodies’, you call yourself a feminist, the feminist academia sees gender in everything which is totally fine and dandy, yet when I, as a man points out that it is not children who died but boys, you were like don’t see gender in everything, everybody matters blah blah. Why don’t you go tell your feminist sistas to stop seeing gender in everything, you also claimed what oxfam did was fine and dandy, who saw gender in everything too.

      You are hypocrite fem, when almost half of the population have a gender preference and academically taught as oppressed throughout eons for which society is in debts, so they must focus on half of the population alone and make one-sided laws, social reforms, funds and aids. But when I point out an issue which affected boys, you are asking me to not to see gender in it? You see how hypocritical that is? I am the hater? I don’t hate, I invalidate your hypocrisy.

      I love to see you seethe and stew in your own hate.
      Wishful thinking.

      The world is made up of all kind of people and that they exist in both gender. I do not even know how many times I must have stated my position.
      I simply watch what you do, as I pointed out, you are a hypocrite. You don’t listen to what hypocrites say, you watch their actions. This article was one-sided and over generalizing malu males, did you spoke against it? There you go hypocrite, I caught you again.

      What are you? An idiot or bigot?
      You think everyone is an exception, so that makes you a bigot, I am neither by the way.

      I think this is the last time I am counter-commenting on any of your comments.
      Good for you, it is annoying when you say something to me and then run like a coward before you get my responses, it is like a dog which only barks when the doors are closed. It is better to not to comment on it.

      Talking to you is not productive anymore.
      What do you like to produce? umm? Do what you’re gender is better at, produce some children and over-populate the earth.

  9. Kerry

    A stunning piece of prose. Thank you.

  10. Atul

    Being a male from Kerala, I find it embarrassing to share this on my wall though I agree that this is indeed an accurate description of the alpha-male society in Kerala. But at the same time I do see a change and hopefully in another couple of years, the change would be evident. Problem is malayalee men is never used to seeing the kind of woman Ranjini Haridas is. On the other hand in Metros, the exposure is a bit more. So it’s nothing new in such places. The more Ranjini Haridases we have in our state, our men will begin to accept the reality that the world is moving with time.

  11. Rahul

    I make a case that the vitriolic reactions from the Malayalee male is not necessarily fueled by hate, but by a deeper rooted sense of inadequacy and along with it admiration. I haven’t seen most of the comments, but from similar other uncensored public forums, I imagine the underlying notion is that brute power and the ability to wield that makes the male somehow superior to the female. Since the stereotypical male-female relationships in Kerala is rooted in this power hierarchy, something that is different leaves the average male at a loss on how to process, assimilate and interact. So instead of engaging her as a peer, the first instinct is to revert back to existing power hierarchies and to disregard her individuality of expression.

    The re-aligning power dynamic throughout India as far as gender relations are concerned is fascinating – not uncommon, but fascinating still. Numerous societies have gone through comparable transitions. My premise is that it will take a decade or more (perhaps even a generation) of unsightly upheavals of this nature before more gender equity becomes a social norm.

    I do not think of it as a failure of the educational structure – I do think the educational structure needs to be re-visited to accept changing realities. And any trigger, like Ranjini for instance, that is far to the left, eventually moves the accepted norm closer to the center.

  12. Liveandletlive

    Though I personally don’t care for Haridas’s so in-your-face deportment while compering which is not how compères are supposed to conduct a program, I believe she has a right to her unique opinions or lifestyle or whatever in her personal life. But I am amazed at the duplicity of the Malayalee. If Haridas had been of North Indian origin, she would have been applauded, aspirational, appreciated et al. But she is home grown produce, who has the nerve to be wild and successful!! I just hope the venom spewing “tight assed” Mallu society is going through a transition, paving the way for acceptance to the Haridases of the future, for whom the present Haridas is the sacrificial goat.

    1. Reks

      could’t agree more!

  13. RG

    I’m sorry I missed your point.

    > The title says “What internet gave men of Kerala”. So I gather you are talking about me, since I am very much from Kerala.

    > Then you speak about Nair women and their financial security. (That’s sort of where I began losing the connection. What’s that to do with Malayalees like me and Internet?)

    > “If educated and financially independent women struggle for justice, safety and equality, then what hope do those without the above­mentioned privileges have?” I am not century you live in today. My grandmother used to talk about this in 1950. You still do. We are honestly quite fed up listening to the same old story. Who in Kerala is uneducated? I would like to know. Don’t you have anything new to bawl about?

    > “‘Decent’ single women don’t do things their fathers and brothers don’t like. Anyone who decides to not be ‘decent’ has then crossed over to the slut territory.” You are right, my friend. Just like the women have the freedom to wear whatever they like, the men too have the right to freedom of speech, and thereby to call them sluts, if required – since certainly for men, their spouses are not meant to seek public attention by revealing skin. Men are generally possessive about their spouses. If your husband is not possessive about you, then it is a red-flag. (It doesn’t need much skill or capability to drop the dress by an inch and get undue attention from men. Women mistakenly think that it is due to their credit and beauty, that they get such attention. Spoiler Alert: God made us like that. Men will look, if they see skin. And nothing in this world can change that)

    > How many times have you been flashed? And how many times have you reported this to the police? Men don’t get flashed. So we do not know how frequent it is. I do not know how many times you have been flashed in Cochin. But if you have not reported this police, you have placed other women in the line of harm in that same area. By reporting this to the police, the cops generally increases the patrolling in that area. So instead of cribbing out on blogs and spoiling malayalee guys’ name, please do something constructive.

    > Is this a media strategy for Ranjini Haridas? Or is this Ranjini Haridas herself using an alias – Sandhya Menon? I am a fraud examiner, and we do people profiling. In this blog, the title has a certain message, the introduction has a different message, the body has a different message and the conclusion has another message. This appears very similar to the TV programs she has hosted. Hence my doubts. I may stand corrected, though.

    > I do not know Ranjini very well. There’s something about her which I don’t like. So I do not watch her shows regularly – and I do not even know progam she hosts. However, this blog has published several intimate pictures of her, which I had not seen earlier. If you are not Ranjini, you realize you are liable for intellectual property violations and defamation suits, if Ranjini choses to sue you. But you seem very confident to publish this in an open forum – suggesting that this once again appears to be marketing stunt for Ranjini Haridas.

    > Whether I respect a person or not, depends on me. Just because I respect Manju Warrier, does not mean I need to respect all the women in world, including Ranjini. There are some women I respect, and there are others I do not. I refuse to see all the women under the same stroke of brush.

    > “If these men are a sampling of most men in Kerala, then it would seem that Malayalee men are inherently crude, disrespectful, and have no finer sensibilities with regard to equality, individuality, racism, or sexuality.” In my opinion, I think you are the one who is being an extreme misandrist, vulgar and have used this blog of yours to sexually discriminate men, (by stating that all men in Cochin are ‘flashers’), along with denigration and sexual objectification of men from Kerala.

    > Education has nothing to do with what your ambitions are, whatever it may be.. If you continue to marginalize men like this, mutual respect will never prevail. You and your blogs can’t force us to respect you.

    1. Sugar_daddy

      well said Rg. I too felt that each paragraph was so disconnected and eventually i lost interest in reading the whole stuff… The problem about the author here is the lack of exposure to the world outside kerala, I have been to very rural parts of India were women are treated so badly , and when compared to all those places kerala is heaven and men here are basically protective in nature, when father or bro or hus is forbidding a women from wearing something or doing something i reckon they are saying with the right intention only, and i feel men in kerala are basically little protective in nature and i wont droop my head down for that, i dont understand why the author have no problem when mothers ask their daughter to do the same thing…

    2. SahilS

      Dear RG,

      I think you have missed the point all your life and probably will (sadly). Just wanted to let you know that considering the article is about m*thaf**k*rs like you, its quite evident why you can’t understand the article. On the other hand, I am also a mallu male but liberated and trying to understand how and my kind oppress our significant others and I totally agree with each and every word. You (and even I) made her and all of them extremists like you made me one in this post. We all have a choice, RG hope you make yours and start questioning who you are becoming. Rest I apologise for the cuss word, I lost my temper. Take care and try to be a good man. All respect starts at home and it starts with her 🙂

    3. TempleTwins

      Sahil is trying to be that one good guy the op wanna pat, as he would cuss at anyone who criticize women folks. He probably gets his daily dosage of blue pills from these blogs and with constant self-loathing he would put his manliness, manhood to shame for an approval from the women folks. He says he is liberated but he is not, he assumes the role of an oppressor by birth and he wants to redeem himself of all the sins he was born with, a male genitalia. He says all respect starts from home and starts with her and what he fails to understand is respect starts with the self, only if he was a self-respecting individual he wouldn’t need to cuss at someone for having a differing opinion. He is one of those guys in the ‘how can she slap’ video swing punches and he is proud to be an unpaid thug for womenfolks.

    4. RG

      I definitely do not respect you

    5. RG

      My earlier comment when I said “I definitely do not respect you”.. That was for Sahil – or is that your real nam?. Perhaps – do you also call yourself Ranjini? 🙂

    6. RG

      🙂 @Templetwins: Well-said, brother. This is clearly another one of Ranjini’s stunt trying to backlash against guys from Kerala, and trying to personify herself as Manju Warrier, by bringing her name also into it.

    7. Ridhi

      Liberated. I will liberate you for real. This is not the story you will hear from any news channel or in any public forum. It is a story being played out secretly in the background. After the parliament passed the anti rape bill, there have a flurry of rape charges around the country. 65% of them came from women who were in a relationship with the men in question. The honorable SC of India later commented on one such case that mutually agreed sex cannot be considered rape (of course it cannot, but our retarded politicians made a law that allows women to accuse anyone who had sex with her of rape). I know women who ruined careers with wrongful sexual harassment charges, who took away kids from their fathers (because in an event of divorce by default you have no right on your kids custody if you have a dick , but of course you can pay for them and your ex wife half your estate. How cool is that? Men are truly liberated) What does this tell you about women? Are all of them opportunists and cunning? Is it ok if I make that generalization? Absolutely not, you cannot insult the entire gender based on that (Not my words, Arundhathi Roy said this in a television show)
      However with a few facebook screenshots on one celebrity’s wall ( no one knows how her wall became the standard to measure mallu man’s behavior online) the author goes on to make serious allegations about men in Kerala. And it is completely fair somehow. Of course you can have opinions. You have no right to call people who stand up for their gender Motherfuckers (come on at least have the balls to type the whole word) just because you disagree with them

    8. vijeesh


      Nice observation.

    9. JP

      RG & TempleTwin: You guys nailed it. This ‘Ranjinification’ will die soon.
      Well, women in my family as well as many of my lady friends (in different parts of India) never appreciated Ranjini.
      It is just a conspiracy by some women who think they have “seen it all” and “had it all” without even giving the remotest respect to their parents who showered them with plenty of cash for their “UK/US degrees”!
      And for the so called “anchoring success” in Asianet, well TRP you morons! Why wouldn’t Asianet commoditise her for their TRP?!

  14. Karthik

    Hey Sandhya, to say I loved reading this piece is an understatement. You not only made some really astute points about gender in Kerala but you did it so well. I’m honestly in awe of your writing. It was thoughtful, funny and so well observed. Honestly, kudos!

  15. shreya

    The blatant truth about what majority of women in Kerala face. Kudos to the author .

  16. Naveda

    hi sandhya,
    my friend showed this article to me and asked me- “is this why you hate mallu men”?
    i’m a malayalee, born brought up outside kerala. No matter how modern ive chosen to be, when i go back to my hometown, im afraid to wear anything i generally wear.i stick to loose fitting outfits, salwars or kurtas. still i’m hooted at, cat called and have sexual comments thrown at me. The entire mallu male attitude has put me off so much that even if i meet a mallu out of kerala, I coldly walk away.
    What you have written here, is every word in my head, every thought in my conscience. thank you sandhya. time to give the others a reality check.

    1. Jonam

      The comment above is the reason why the article can be deemed as a factual misrepresentation of male stereotypes originating from Kerala. The cliché that the author paints here for the average malayali guy by being a malayali herself is highly opinionated. It’s just based on her nit-picky observation towards forming a theory by eulogizing gender actions unfaithfully. In this case Ranjini Haridas, a highly talented anchor serves as the role model according to the author. What are the attributes for wisdom and confidence and who gets to decide them and how? Respect isn’t demanded but won with your own virtues. Equality follows.

      “Men kept hating, she kept working, laughing all the way to the bank in her designer high heels.”
      All men cannot be put in the same misogynist domain, despite vast diversity through cultural and religious backgrounds. This applies to men both being inside and outside Kerala whose comments are reflected on many levels. The sexual comments/ threads are sad but most of the explicit ones are never addressed inadvertently. By being in a community like ours there are cultural values that if ignored can lead to instant denigration. Why would the author consider those adhering to the values beneath her? Why are the other local successful TV anchors not being highlighted here who are equally paid and popular?
      The subtleties of logic to appease the audience who would have followed her otherwise was virtually non-existent in her attitude towards many interviews she faced. The opportunity to garner followers was being busted with sheer arrogance one after the other. Infact her objections on moral policing were dictated on her own terms and it manifested into hatred from within her community.

    2. Tina

      Dear Naveda, Life cycle of a Keralite: Birth -> Think what others will think -> Die. If you understood this you will not be having any difficulty in living in Kerala. There are some categories good and bad. People wanted others should identify them as good, as well they believe they have the right to judge others are good or bad.

      My husband is born and brought up outside Kerala. He says Kerala men (applicable to teenage boys also) stare at a woman as if they want to rape them at spot. In Kerala, women are allowed to study, go out and do jobs. The situation is far better than other states like UP and Bihar. But there is a difference, in UP and Bihar, society is not much favour of women going outside, in villages so you can expect such incidents. In Kerala educated people, civilized society…. But they haven’t yet learnt how to treat women!!!

      Ultimatey they want a show off, to be into the category ‘what a civilized society!!’. But inner mind is not yet changed (for both men and women).
      All my dear fellow Keralites, please teach your sons/brothers how to treat a women, atleast to the new generation.

  17. Sabarish Chokkalingom

    I used to think that why there is such a cultural shock in Kerala rather than any other parts of India. But the bitter reality came, when I travelled across India, other than the metropolitan cities and found that Kerala is far far better in treating and respecting women. When you travel to the Rest of metropolitan cities in India, the situation is pathetic and there is always a male chauvinism prevailing and the women being considered as mere objects of _______.

    There has been always a “concept of woman” in Kerala since the start. This concept was not of woman being treated as slave, but as the person who is supposed to manage the family, may make secondary income making sure it doesn’t imbalance the family and carry fashion in a traditional portrayal of beauty. When Haridas challenged such an institution, definitely there will be a sense of insecurity among the men on their chauvinism, which sprouts up as internet haters.

    Literacy and Education has never helped Kerala in the real roots of inculcating character and respect for woman, but instead it has just helped them earn some prospective jobs.

    The nation where mother and sister are used as bad words, it takes either lots of struggle to change this attitude and create a better place for woman or it just gets worsened.

    Respect and empowerment for woman has to start from our homes…

  18. Sooraj Soman

    Well written.
    I like inspired writing. But you must learn to control your emotions and frustrations and not let them flow onto what you are presenting.
    Because it loses its charm and the reader would consider you just another feminist who has just tried to break the shackles, and the article reflects only protest.

    Your write-up should inspire not only women, but also men. Good luck.
    That will be an article of real class. Am waiting.

  19. Anamika Nair

    Hi Sandhya,

    Thanks for writing this article. You’ve absolutely hit the nail on the head.

    As a woman who has lived in Kerala for many years, I’ve been the subject of a lot of harrassment on the streets of Kerala. Married men in trains giving me their number completely unsolicited, a guy masturbating on a bus in front of me, getting stalked on my walk home in Trivandrum. Random guys on the road passing comments on my appearance and attire. What was my crime? That I was wearing a pair of jeans annd a loose T-shirt? Strange men calling out to me with the words “Edi”, “Vaadi”, “Podi”, “Nee”, “Penne”, “Mole”

    A few reasons I think this is happening –

    1. My hypothesis is that the lack of economic prosperity within the state has made many men insecure about themselves, and when they see a strong, independent woman who doesn’t give a damn about their opinions, they see this as a personal attack on their masculinity

    2. “The Good Mallu Guys” exist, but sadly they’re in a minority. Most successful malayalees do not actually live in the state.

    3. Men and women help perpetuate stereotypes about gender roles. For example, very few parents in Kerala bring up their sons to take an active part in household chores

    4. The media also reinforces the image of women as evil mother/daughter in laws, who have zero meaningful/professional aspirations. Most women on TV are shown crying helplessly or at the other end of the spectrum, they are plotting another woman’s downfall. Very few women are shown leaving abusive relationships and standing up for themselves

  20. Nithin S

    I read the full article and I am very glad someone spoke about the increasing harassment of Women(especially the ones who break the tradition) in Kerala. I am from Trivandrum and yes, those abusing flashes are prevalent here too. To be fair, one of the most important thing I must point out is that although there are men who speak only in the language of abuse, there are also men of great character and free-thinking. No gender is perfect. There are always people who oppose change, and that’s part of human behavior. If you think from their perspective, they are doing what they believe is right. But never they realize their words and actions are causing a big scar in the hearts of the victims.
    I liked Ranjini Haridas during those years she anchored the program and I never cared for how she looked(maybe because I was only a kid, unrotten by our society) but lately her words seems to be loud and thoughtless, sounding like a dumb politician’s(the ones who speak stupidity for attention) words, even though she might be expressing the problem of millions of women in our land. It would’ve been more effective if she chose another approach. But maybe she’s just being herself, or maybe I’m the one wrongly judging her. I do believe that the light will shine in those darkest minds, praying that they come out of their hatred and make our world, a better place to live in.
    Thank You.

  21. vinod

    I loved your writing! Please do pass me your contact.

  22. jay

    You are right, education has failed us. There is no point in boasting the literacy rate, unless it is producing normal human beings.

  23. Sarath

    only one side of the problem, we gotta change the whole ” I am better than you ” attitude and for that we need to throw feminism and other ” ism” s of the window. I do dream of a world where men and women are treated equally , but my logic tells me , it aint gonna happen, at least not in the near future. what we can do though is to accept that both men and women are unique in their own ways and they complete each other through friendship , marriage or what ever way they can work together. Mutual respect is the way to go , but a lot has to be changed to get there.

    Dear Sandhya , there are good men out there , and I am pretty sure you do have met some of them. I am a little concerned about the article depicting all men as barbarians. Trust me ,there are a few bad eggs , but not every one is bad

    1. San

      True sharath… We should celebrate the difference… Both are designed differently and are biologically different… No one is above the other – but there is a difference which should be celebrated… The author appears pretty frustrated…

  24. Ranjeet Menon

    Dear Sandhya,

    Very well written but by exemplifying two women who have stood by what they believe in, you seem to have generalized too much about malayalee men as a whole. The matrilineal society in the Nair community came about because Nair women were practising polyandry. Nair women used to have children with multiple men. Different children would have had to be given different family names if a patrilineal structure was followed thats why mother’s family name was given. My great grandfather was a Brahmin Iyer who was in a relationship with my great grand mother who was a Menon. His marriage was fixed to a Brahmin woman. When my great grand mother got to know of this, she called him home the day before the marriage and locked him up. He missed his marriage and had no option but to marry her. Didn’t all of this make women empowered? There is always one thing all men have always wanted from women. And all women haven’t taken it lying down either. They have used sex as a tool to bewitch men and fulfill their needs and wishes. In the present day self proclaimed wealthy aristrocratic Nair families, if you look into their not so distant past, you will find atleast one woman who may have used her wiles and guiles to woo rich men and made herself wealthy. So when you speak about Renjini Haridas and Manju Warrier, the meaning of women empowerment has only changed with changing times. An ex-colleague of mine I met in the Netherlands told me that there was a time when women got married to men or submitted themselves to men because they were financially dependent on men. That need no longer exists, so she doesn’t feel the need to get married at all. So you cannot complain broadly about all men being abusive. At some point, women have allowed men to take them for granted. All women are empowered with one divine factor. Only they can harbour and nurture life. There was a time in our ancient past when women were worshipped for this. When humanity became the most dominant species on our planet, the need to procreate was no longer relevant. Men and women no longer knew what to do with each other. It all started from there. This is why history will tell you that more than 50,000 free thinking women were burnt at the stakes by the Vatican during the Dark Ages. All the fury and vile directed at Renjini Haridas on social media only means this confusion of how to coexist continues to this day. I am a person who doesn’t give a hoot about what anyone wears or how they present themselves. I am 38 years old and not yet married because society has made even a simple marital life complicated for us. People have been asking me what type of woman am I looking for, fair or dark, tall or short, long hair or short hair, etc etc. I just reply with one sentence: Look for a woman. All I mean is look into the person and see if she matches my personality. No one seems to understand this, unfortunately. All societal rules are made by us only. Society has to evolve with time and when we hold on to institutions like marriage and horoscopes that have become irrelevant in present times, its ripples will be felt in the society. Renjini Haridas and Manju Warrier are just two examples of people facing the heat in a society refusing to progress and move on. It is simply like they are trying to run when they are held back by their ankles.

  25. Jeevan

    The author seems to concentrate only on the negative remarks against Ranjini Haridas in social media. She does not know the history or reason behind it. In fact Ranjini was liked by almost all in her first two seasons of Idea star singer. Problem started after she tried to gain cheap publicity by taunting male audience. The simple truth is if you give respect , you get respect back. In fact there are lot of actresses and tv personalities who show off in dressing more than Ranjini, still liked by many, Remya Nambeeshan is an example. Ranjini is just trying to be in the limelight by getting more negative publicity. That is what she wants actually. That is why she is jumping in front of lines and accusing men, just to get publicity. She is taking along some extreme feminists like the author along with her in the process. There are bad posts also against male artists like Santhosh Pandit. He is also using the negative publicity campaign to get more attention.
    So please don’t fall in to these traps, young girls and women.. We have nothing to hold against you except roses.

    1. San

      Feminism views females always as victims… And men are dogs according to them.. This movement of feminism unfortunately has the support of few feminized men (low on testosterone) – look at the comments by few here!! When a women is inviting herself to be objectified, there is nothing that can be done to restore their honor… Ranjini deserves disrespect – she just asked for it….

    2. Anamika Nair

      Look up the definition of feminism online, Sam. It’s not about women being superior, but rather feminism advocates for the social, political and economic equality of men and women.

      No woman deserves disrespect for her accent or physical appearance. And I really don’t think ranjini has “asked” to be objectified.

    3. Jeevan

      Looks like Ranjini Haridas is the authors role model.. Feminism is not about bad mouthing men.. Nobody cares a damn if she is successful or not.. and to be successful you dont have to dress in a particular way or wear a low cut blouse as the author claims..there are many men who help daughters or spouses to be successful.there are successful women who are adored and there are better actresses and anchors who are respected..ranjini haridas is a mediocre anchor who tries to gain popularity by her cheap publicity stunts..she has no respect for others and doesnt consider others equal which is evident from the airport line episode…Even in the west, parents make sure sons and daughters are dressed and well behaved.. Even for men, they cant go into an office in shorts and get the respect..its just the same..

    4. TempleTwins

      Look up the definition of feminism online, Sam.

    5. San

      Anamika – she does ask for it… There are more successful women people love… But not Ranjini… Sandhya Menon I guess is Ranjini herself 🙂 🙂 BTW – that’s just my opinion though… Feminism in practice means bad mouthing men… I only ask you one question.. In case of calamity (such as fire or earthquake) women and children are always evacuated first – hope you know that… How does feminism not apply here ? This kind of selective “superiority” is what is baffling and annoying… If you are equal (I do consider so) be equal in sufferings too… How many women are prepared to loose that privilege? You may say today “Yes I do” – but I doubt if you will in practice… There is a major difference between men and women – both biologically and emotionally… That doesn’t mean one is superior to other… Why not celebrate that difference instead of theorizing and speaking ill of men ? I care hoots about accent… But dressing is something that deserves responsibility – not just here – but even in USA (the country which many women and few men like to Copy from – I only wish their quest for science and technology is copied similarly)…

  26. Megha

    Hi Sandhya,

    Let me congratulate you for a very well written, very strong article! I hope more and more women read this, and realize that their lives are not defined by or limited to what the male members of their family/ society think… that there are endless possibilities for them!


  27. Nithin

    A well written piece,
    This situation in Kerala is especially curious if you notice the fact that most Malayalee men are mamas boys. Although I would say that most men have better respect for women, it is also sad that this respect is limited to a version of the female species that are supposedly the homely girl next door with the innocence of a 10 year old.

    But I dont think this is an issue faced by women alone, malayalees are ctive in criticising anybody that seems a bit modern, Actor Prithviraj for example. People here had a huge issue with his independent ideas, bold tone and liberal outlook. When he decided to marry a divorced woman(a successful journalist with a national tv network) didn’t meet the expectation of the general public he was ridiculed for that as well.

    So is the issue something that is pinnable only on men alone? no, If men are the perpetrators of hate speech and harassment, it is the women who play an equal part in enabling them, not just by being silent but also by joining in.

    1. vinod

      I have been living abroad almost half of my life. Even though I do not have a large malayalee circle, the malayalee character that I am repugnant to which we blame malayalees in Kerala is exactly the same I see in people abroad, be it Dubai, UK or the US. And this is not just about men, the women too have a serious issue. It is quite embarrassing at times…

  28. geebs

    I’ve never been a fan of Renjini, and it’s mostly because of her heavily anglicized Malayalam. former colleague of mine’s sister used to be her classmate and he claims she studied abroad for only two years or so (I can’t verify this either). How would your native tongue dramatically change during that short of a time span? It’s as if she is faking it.

    I agree with the points you try to make though. The way our women are treated angers me as well.

  29. krishna

    Am not a malayalee.. But have seen ranjini’s show idea star singer… Let me tell you she is a big show off… Guys hate show offs… It is not that people are not able to live her life… They very well can – but most people are responsible enough to contribute something sane for their family and society… There are better things to do that seek attention showing your body… I mean anyone can do that – be it ranjini or rajini… But only class will be appreciated.. Crass is meant to be ridiculed… Kerala off late is in news for lot of wrong reasons.. Do not destroy your beautiful state… I really do not understand why the author seems frustrated… No one else is so frustrated as the author makes out to be…

  30. Nup

    Yawn!! Go get a life girl

  31. samuel

    It’s good to draw boundaries to your thoughts, men or women both alike otherwise we could become anything. If you think liberating yourself and immorality goes hand in hand I think this article is a waste of time to anybody who has read it. That is the point I got though .

  32. Shatrugan T V

    Well said and very apt in today’s Kerala.

    Jagathi Sreekumar’s idiotic diatribe against Ranjini is a perfect example of this fear and hatred. Hope these chaps come to their senses at some point of time.

  33. sonuraj

    typical feminist….

  34. A.B

    I have always been boggled by the backwardness of the educated Kerala society..sexually starved, dominating males who will paw anything female. Or t fb equiequivalent of posting a slutty comment..i remember an article of an American porporn star who used to forward comments of degrading nature to parents of the boys who used to post. It was to let them know about the online persona of such people.. Its high time Haridas did ssomething with the serial haters..they need to be publicly condemned for their filthy thoughts..

  35. Sai

    While I agree to the most of the text, its more of obsessively focussed on Ranjini Haridas and can never be accepted as an icon as the article is trying to project. Neither she has changed the whole anchoring and accent scenario as you claim.. come on.. give it a break…!!!!

    Indeed the society / men need to grow up..mostly.. majority or whatever.. but again how can a well read , so called journalist generalize a 35 million society…Thats gross !!!!

    Its moving forward, changes happening in the younger side of it, which promises a change in the next decade or so… Give it time n stay cool.

  36. Amrockz

    All mallu actresses didn’t get comment like this… Its in the case of rajini only because she deserve it…Atleast check her public interaction and attitude and write a long article like this 🙂
    I think your goal is to provoke malayali readers and make publicly otherwise next chance is she might paid you well !!

  37. Shylin

    Loved the article. What I don’t understand is the psychology at play here. What is it with Malayalee men and successful bold women? There has to be some sort of Freudian explanation for this heavy deep rooted anger. How can an average Keralite sitting in front of TV be threatened by a beautiful successful anchor? Is it his long repressed anger towards every beautiful woman who has rejected or better yet ignored him. Now finally through the internet he can get back at every reshma and anju that gave them the cold shoulder. And that’s why Zukerburg invented Facebook. Its hard to believe that the socialists and the free spirited, padramajan and bharathan fans gave rise to the half baked youth of today. But not all Malayalee men are the same way, the latest highly educated generation are a little different I believe. I guess time will tell. I think the men of tomorrow will learn to be less threatened by bold women, and hopefully will stop deciding for them, as what they should wear or how they should talk. I hope the men of tomorrow will learn to grow beyond their own petty experiences and develop into respecting strong minded men.

    1. Jeevan

      Good questions Shylin.. somehow author trying to make a point that men dont like successful women.. On fact there are lots of fathers and spouses who is working hard to make theor daughters/spouses successful. There are much more actresses and anchors who are successful and respected. Ranjini just tries to get cheap piblicity by provoking men.. And some feminists falling in her trap.. She was thrown out of the show for a reason.. Its just that she tried to make the show about herself.. I think the author is paid by ranjini or herself..Seeing lot of private pics..

  38. Able Lawrnce

    I am not surprised!
    Men are similar everywhere, rather there is a similar proportion of repressed ones everywhere; just that the repressed ones in Kerala flaunt it more, rather are not ashamed to show it on Facebook.
    There is very little (healthy) interaction between boys and girls in Kerala and so boys grow up with a perverted and unrealistic idea of girls. Unfortunately the families in Kerala also do not help much in getting the boys to grow up. Many manage to do so but a lot are left behind in arrested development and you get an over representation of these in the facebook “fan” pages I guess. I guess it is also because there is no social consequence for these in kerala.

  39. Misha Menon

    Extremely well written article. I left Kerala and jumped at the first chance to come to USA for the exact same reason. Ranjini Haridas and Manju Warrier has proved that miracles can happen, if women are willing to keep fighting back. Hats off to both of them for not giving up on themselves and paving paths for strong and smart women to come out and progress in Kerala.

  40. Sunny

    I love the way she speaks Malayalam. And it is possible for a person to forget their language. Or atleast have an ‘accent’ to it.

    Personal experience.

    People could either appreciate her shows, maybe even criticise the show. Everything else, none of their DAMN business.

  41. Able Lawrnce

    Here is a study which is relevant here.
    In a survey among 1800 university students in US, they found ~120 serial rapists (self reported) and these people were repeat offenders and none of the cases were ever reported. The most interesting part were that these serial rapists were aroused by audio recordings of rapes and showed other tendencies towards violence against women. The estimate ranged from 6-14%. If we take that 10% of the men had such tendencies, it can explain the numbers.
    David Lisak and Paul M Miller. Repeat Rape and Multiple Offending Among Undetected Rapists
    Violence and Victims, Vol. 17, No.1, 2002
    But other studies show that how these men act depend on the peer expectations. While we have to agree that Keralites have a problem in dealing with these people, these would be a minority (like everywhere else)

  42. mathew

    Its nothing, in simple those who are commented bad and vulgar are, the real fantasies about her in their own dirty mind. So they can not do anything more than this silly comments. But our “mallus” are really narrow-minded and they enjoy some pleasure by writing and reading such things,
    In real if any of them get a chance to kiss/hug her privately, do you think any of them deny that offer…even if it is costlier they will accept the offer with both hands… so its a kind of pure jealous….”kittatha munthiri pulikum”
    its a common fact among malayalies they fear the society. And acting like I am a gentleman ,by keeping a real fake face in their mind.
    Best wishes for that lady and I like her as common man…


  43. arun

    I’m 23 and 22 year I lived outside kerala in just one year I saw what my similar age guys think about with girls in kerala before I got here I just know them as mom sis friend best friend girlfriend classmates now they are girls all of them they don’t speak too much. They can’t go everywhere comes home before dark they can’t ride bikes why I don’t know I think there life’s are scripted before they born some uncle type guy’s were talking about a girl when they saw her in jeans I just heard a word “perachaval” i didn’t know about that time then I asked about it then I thought what she’s done wrong with it it’s just jeans malayali genes.

  44. rojin

    A great article written by sandhya ma’ brings to light the difference between literacy and educated which is huge

  45. Sajit Nair

    ideally , I think you should have started your statement by saying … ‘ I started this as a hate piece emasculating Malayalee men …. And maybe by the time I end this piece of literary diarrhoea , I will have them effectively butchered.’. ( well, it seems to work anyways, looking at the scores of admirers your articles got ).

    I cannot offer any apologies to what my fellow Malayalee men or Indians or fellow community members might do and I have no obligation to do so as I find the assessment unfair. I see you being no different from the arrogant prick known as ‘ Rupert Murdoch’ who claims that the Muslim community is responsible for the tragedy that took place recently at CH.

    While most of the comments you mention certainly portray a negative opinion, I am forced to think that you are either an amateur when it comes to the way of seeing how interactions are done on the social media… Or that you take everything at face value. If that were the case , I suggest you to refrain from entering a couple of India Pakistan chat room . In fact, you may go ahead… For I believe the next article would be titled ‘ my fellow Indians … Grow up !!!’

    I don’t much care for what Ms. Haridas or Ms. Warrier would do in their free time. That’s their life. They have entered in a world that is in practice no different from the earlier world of courtesans where the fabric of reality encompassing entertainers were ripped apart for public mockery. Lady Diana and Dodi Al Fayed wasn’t spared…. Who is this Ms. Ranjini ?!

    It’s easy to crib about the cattle class when you always fly business class.

    While some of the comments on her personal life was downright distasteful …. I had hoped for some sort of a better stance and a mature response from this epitome of womanhood !!

    But what the hell do I know….. I am after all , in your opinion , a misogynistical, porn addicted, ,sexually repressed Malayalee man having scant regard for women !

  46. presita

    ABSOLUTELY!!! Why has our education failed? Well written. Glad to see a positive write up on Ranjini Haridas. I know her personally and find her to be an honest voice and an honest representation of a lot of us malayali women today whether these men like it or not. Sandhya, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this article, thank you.

  47. Deepthi

    You nailed it, Sandhya!
    A successful, independent woman attracts so much hatred and is branded as someone with “jaada” (pride). Women who support such male chauvinists are the most annoying ones.

    Sad state of a land which has otherwise produced so many great individuals.

  48. ALFAR

    I love very much your writings but i think you are a feminist because there are many places you are showing your ‘unlikeness’. so ms. Sandya i am sorry…. its just crap pls use to write some good articles in your style . i loved so much your writing style and please use this ralent to this society.

  49. Anu

    Well I am not a keralite but yes I am a tamilian and I think it exist it there as well.. Well one of my mallu guy friend shared this post and I initially thought may be this post was all about feminism and how we need to be independent . but reading it kinda freaks me out to that what kind of a country I am loving in.. :X women should stop caring about what others might say and do what they like.. Well now I kinda get it why few mallu/ Tamil friends of mine object me wearing bright lipsticks :/ I always thought it was because they felt that color didn’t suite me …god bless ppl like them :X

  50. Nithin

    Hi Sandhya & Fellow sisters,
    I understand the frustration that been depicted in your comments. But then it is unfair to generalise the kerala men and rather men alone as the cause for all social evils. The problem is we humans as a whole are hypocrats. We have our reservations on gender, caste, religion, race, region in case of India, country…. To say that the kerala men are the worst chavunists is a surprise. I bet you have not closely mingled with men from Jats, hard core mumbaikars, other south indians. Their perspectives of fellow women and moral code of conducts are shameful which make me think that my kerala is much better. Morons exist every where and those who post abuses as comments are to be labelled as Morons and it is a state of mental dis order. I am not a hypocrite and I respect women around me and infact encourages my wife to be serious about her career and support her. But then I have my reservations when It comes to Rajini. 2 yrs of being abroad and the excuse of forgetting ur mother is inexplicable. I been out of Kerala for 10 yrs now and I still love my language and find it hard to speak anything other than malayalam to my keralite friends,colleagues etc. My boss is a keralite who is married to a Punjabi and speaks nothing but english at home. But he speaks nothing but malayalam to me when alone. The point here is all comes down to how much you value ur culture and values. The problem with Ranjini is she doesnt like her kerala culture. She should understand that she is a celebrity now and she has the responsibility of being role models to the new generation. So her personal life also needs to be exemplory. That is where she looses it all and she too me is a bad role model. There are people like sweta menon etc who have exposed more and I really think it is not her dress sense that has created more haters for her. Its her disrespect for her culture in which she has been brought up.

    My appeal to all sisters is to not fall prey for all these propogates articles and opinions on male chavunism. The biggest threat is the growing seeds of feminism that been implanted for all the unnecessary reasons
    The best possible way to respond is to ignore and prove to your critics through your deeds rather than cripping over the unfair practises that exist around us. We cannot change the others or the society. But you can force the society not to ignore you by making yourself noticeable through your deeds. There are better roles models like Indira Nooyi, Kiran Bedi, etc. Pick the best role models in ur respective fields. Best celebrites are the ones who act as responsible role models in the areas other than the respective area of excellance such as personal life, social life etc.

    Stop falling prey to idealogies of feminism and male chavunism as there are all possibilities that the corrupt your rational thinking and you are likely to carry it into your personal lives and will have an impact on your relationships with your partners, brothers and sisters, fathers and mothers.
    I saw some thing commenting that life of a girl is bounded by restrictions by your father and brother before marriage and later by husbands. As, a father and a brother, I am heart broken to read the comment. I only wish to have the best life for my daughter and sister and to ensure that they are safe & secure. Given the morons in the society, i see the need to make sure that my girl is safe and therefore as a true well wisher may make some suggestions. But that is not to restrict her social life but to ensure her safety. To the sister who made thay statement, I would ask to check with your brother, father,mother and husband the concerns and anxiety they feel when you are out of home or station for a day.
    Its sad that feminist thoughts have started making young wome turn rebellious towards the opposite gender in their own family.

  51. Anup

    Too lazy to read shit post! Well she is liek that! How come 80% of them against her? so its ppl’s fault or her? Think twice! now post his comment as screenshot

  52. Kiran

    Well – written !!! Diction & vocabulary is great ! Nice analysis too. Keep writing !

  53. Arjun

    This article is everything I’ve ever felt about my fellow malayali men..! In a very well written form! 🙂

  54. archu

    How many times and in how many ways do ppl make men realize what they’re doing is wrong?? It’s like they’re mentally challenged creed. Anyways I couldn’t finish your article because it’s just too much of the same info going on n on. Keep spreading the word. But please try to keep it short next time for impatient ppl like us.

  55. Rebecca

    A very well articulated, well researched and well written article.
    I think all Keralites(both men and women) need to read this and understand the most deep rooted problem in their ‘educated’ society.
    Ours is one of the most patriarchal societies which becomes evident if you watch even a single soap. It’s not a typical saas bahu Ekta Kapoor serial. It’s downright scary with how normalized violence against women is on these shows.

  56. SA

    i believe, this above statement can never win her the respects from people. When many people hates one single person without a reason, do u think that bullshit. There are many actress in Kerala, have you seen anybody insulting them, as in compare with Ranjini hardas haters.!!
    the respect can never earn by putting stupid article internet and sharing through social media shit. The respect has to earn, that applied to all , men and women.

    If Ranjini haridas being a malayalee, and using weird kind of slang and killing our mother tongue, then the people who are proud of being malayalee will fight back. May be women don’t cozz they become feminist in these women related issues. But the fight will go on unless she say the proper Malayalam without a attitude. Or if u say that she doesn’t know malayalam, then why she can go and act on some English channels, or why even she can talk in English itself.

    So hereby the above statement doesn’t make any sense.

  57. Joe

    Superb article….
    It is just a tight slap to all those narrow minded men here….
    Hats off to your for voicing it….
    But malayalee men were never gonna change for sure…100% guaranteed

  58. Sugar_daddy

    My first reaction to the article.. What the hell.. The existence of Renjini Haridas have never concerned me. If she wants to talk in a twisted malayalam accent let be it, Because in kerala nobody knows the real malayalam accent, because from kasargode to tvm people speak with different tone and different accent.. manju warrier part dear friend i am a boy and all my friends, we discuss only one thing abt that incident its nothing other than criticising dileep . Now i think i am not that so called mallu u were refering here, neither are my friends .. Now look dear are you afraid of going out dark, all alone , if yes then it make two of us. The street out there nower days is not only harmful for girls for boys too, there are increasing number of male rape in india, can the victims come out and speak freely about that incidents here? usually they wont , There are really really bad men in the world and since kerala (last time i checked )is a part of that world ,so some landed up in this part, but that doesnt mean all men in kerala are misogynist and flashers, and all those fancy adjectives you used
    ps: in public toilets usualy boys like me has to cover our genetelia wen v take a pee other wise some guy will look straight to there from your side and just masturbate in front of u.. lady we too have to leave with this its a real sick world out there, and because some are sick doesnt means all are sick
    and at last but not the least happy trolling my friend you had a great bait…

  59. Navin Menon


    A very well written article. I can see still some people who do not understand and go about the grotesque judgemental way of blaming females for what they do becomes bitchy/slutty etc whereas there is no such common words used in the male world and at the same time blame the reason for the bad nature of men to root from a females act as a mother. I mean there is no end to what blame it can come to. I guess its always been there with some part of our culture to be judgmental in one fashion always.
    I really respect the command the strength u r trying to bring out here. But believe me, things are slowly changing. I am a may be one kind of example of the shift. 😉
    I am sure your perspective does hurt some blown up egos but I’d say its for the good.
    My respect!

  60. N.shankar

    That’s why I insisted on getting a Malayalee bride for my son and a Malayalee groom for my daughter who were born and brought up outside of Kerala.
    Most young people in Kerala irrespective of the region they hail from are petty and narrow minded unlike the same who are born and brought up outside of Kerala. Can’t blame them alone its got to be blamed on their elders with whom they have grown up with I guess , besides hearing grandma and grandpa stories and also lack of exposure to a world outside of Kerala. Just being an educated person will not do, we need to know about whats happening in surroundings too and conduct ourselves in the most responsible manner.

  61. Ridhi

    I am not disagreeing to the point author is trying which reflects a very deep rooted problem in an otherwise harmonious society. But at certain parts it looks like author lost her direction and focused on man hate themes more. Recently I was attending a talk on gender equality and equal wages. One of the things that she discussed was what happens when women avg pay in an organization instead of being equal to men’s becomes more. Pay ratio is more than 1 (currently avg in USA is 0.93). Can men claim that they are under paid, gender discrimination? Similarly custody of a child in the event of divorce. For some reason being born a man by default denies me custody of my child even if the woman was unfaithful, she demanded divorce. SC of India recently made strong statements against wrongful rape charges. That is woman accusing man of rape when it was mutually agreed sex and later on the relationship fell apart. The way men are mistreated in this country is far more deep rooted in its constitution itself. Yet there are no hate articles by men floating around the internet

  62. Akhill

    Great article!!
    Every Mallu should read this

  63. Mithun

    With all due respect I would say that your article is highly subjective. You have sampled the abusive nature of men against well reputed women, who least bother about the culture we often boast about. Why don’t you take a look at the social media profiles of men like Santosh Pandit? What do you think is the reason people abuse him ruthlessly? The abusive nature of the malayali man is the curse. They abuse regardless of occasion, gender or anything.. In one way they are unbiased in abusing 😀 (take it on a lighter note)… So feminist authors can view this attitude of men in context to their approach towards women… but the reality is these men behave the same to everyone…

  64. mughambo

    Such a superficial article . Any individual who doesn’t live the way the society wants to is targeted there is no gender bias in it . If u remember there was a gentlemen who for the same reasons was targeted by the Kerala public Mr Pundit. I think both are similar personalities in pursuit of attention and fame . These two individuals are not the role models for anyone in their respective domain . its normal for the public to react to their atrocities ( Showing the middle finger as a proof of casting vote , jumping the Que in an airport and her merciless murder of the Malayalam language are few of them). I think people of Kerala are still tolerant because I personally feel in other parts of India mobs would have burnt her house for all these . It is commonly seen that people who are born and brought up outside Kerala look down up on keralities . The origin of this article here can be easily traced back to that . I feel women in Kerala are much safer than in any part of the country and there is nothing special in Kerala men ,who are at par with any other Indian men who are filthy and porn.

  65. sheena pylan

    Well written… good article…

  66. RG

    There is a public interest litigation being filed against Sandhya Menon in the High Court of Kerala for defaming the men of Kerala and other related allegations, based on this article on “Youth ki aawaz” and on her personal blog. As soon as the author’s contact details are available, summons would be served. This is FYI to all readers. Thank you.

    1. RG

      The author Sandhya Menon – has a personal blog, where her email id has been qouted as

      We are in the process of identifying this individual, and if any of you have any details, or could provide an address, it would be most appreciated. The cyber cell has been informed on this regard.

      If “Youth ki awaaz” editors has a practice of verifying the identity of its authors, and if you have Sandhya Menon’s real identity or contact details, kindly pass it on. Thanks.

  67. Tom

    Hope you realise that Ranjini’s downfall has nothing to do with her sleeveless blouse or skirt, most Malayali men are familiar with the western tourist who are abundant in Kerala, the real reason is the fuck-all attitude she has especially after the airport affair, thats when people realised that she thought too much of herself. I think it is a naive feeling that Mallu men are not having liberal sex, I think the women here are quite brave and care a fuck about virginity and stuff like that.
    Yeah she might be an attention seeker and thats what she is getting, i bet she would be the most depressed person if she did not get those filthy comments. But anyway she is still the most lively presenter on TV, our family enjoyed Ranjini Haridas than the show itself.

  68. Stunned Girl

    If you like something, someone, praise them. If you dislike, then don’t give a damn. And if you are astounded or shocked, get in control first and then politely tell the person about it. Why spitting so much of venom (penises, abusive language, insults) ? In the process, your own mindset might grow! you become open to some more ideas, self reflection.

    The comments were more interesting than the article. Temple Twin! you are a really interesting character. Your adamant stand amazes me! Are you for real? I am still trying to grasp what to make out of your comments. Nobody has praised you so far for being so good at debating. I seem to be the first one.

    An advice: take it easy, sugar. Load lena swasthya k liye hanikarak hai.

    1. TempleTwins

      An advice: take it easy, sugar. Load lena swasthya k liye hanikarak hai.

      You assumed I know hindi but I suppose you are telling me not to be tensed or something. I am not, I can say the coldest thing with a smile on my face. So I am easy, salt. (If I am sugar then you’re salt)

      Temple Twin! you are a really interesting character.

      Your adamant stand amazes me!
      You call it adamant, I call it persistence. Stay amazed 😀

      Are you for real?
      I am real but sometimes on thursdays and saturdays alone I become a figment of Imagination.

      I am still trying to grasp what to make out of your comments.
      You could read it a few more times and make something out of it.

      Nobody has praised you so far for being so good at debating.
      I would take this as a compliment and I usually take compliments with a pinch of salt(hint, hint).

      I seem to be the first one.
      Yes! you are, you smarty pants.

  69. sandeep


    Nicely written..

    Though i Must admit i have never watched ranjini haridas show, much more than that i had to Google wiki to see who she is!!

    But i can relate to most of the things you say.

    Look forward to reading some good articles like this.

    P.s If I any give you a suggestion, somewhere i think your article focus changes SLIGHTLY from defining stereotype to explaining your examples and made the article a tad bit lengthy. you could if possible make into two parts.

    Any ways thanks again. Your article was good and worth reading

  70. mandarin

    Wow you nailed the issue in the most direct manner… not that its going to make any difference to haters who believe women need to adhere to set standards while they can do what they please….

  71. Shijo Parakadan

    To the author, With all respect

    I’m a malayali man, one of the so called ‘perverts’ in your own words. I represent all those, who wonder why all malayali men are type casted as the same, when a few misbehave.
    Like every one in a particular religion being called terrorists because some sick fellows among them did something sick. Yes, there are fellows who ‘spit venom’ where ever they please; but when focusing them please don’t reach into conclusions for the remaining sample space. If you get your math right and check the statistics, you would find there are only a few who does what you were elaborating. Even Renjini Haridas would agree to it that she gets support much more than criticism which helped her sustain this long.

    See the big picture sister, let’s not major on the minors. Malayali men are much more than what your thoughts are about them. I’m a one to one counselor, and has sufficient first hand informations to base it when I say that this write up is hopelessly biased. Where problems are blown beyond proportions and zero solutions offered. Some thing written just to say I hate men in this geography. What difference do you actually have with those abusers in the fb page. They also have wrong convictions which got translated to words online. Ya, you have a more polished way of saying it.

    I hope some day you will use your talent in writing to spread love and honor, especially to the majority men who knows their boundaries, who are good at heart, and who doesn’t have issues with Renjini Haridas or Manju Warrier.
    God bless you!

    (Most part of the article suggests like it’s written atleast a year ago, I hope this comment reaches the author)

    1. Harsh

      The job of any author is to bring to light phenomena or observations other wise not seen by all. Their job is to expose something they have observed based on their research. That is their job. The article is written in the hope that people debate and discuss and hopefully some realizations and change can trickle down.

      Why do you take so much offense. If you feel you are not amongst the people targeted here, why this reaction. The author is highlighting what they believe is true based on research. Can you deny such a thing exists?

      I think you should congratulate yourself and not take blame where you shouldn’t be.

  72. Mira Prabhu

    Sandhya Menon, bravo….to my view, misogyny is so deeply rooted in the Indian psyche that even most of our educated women have no clue how deep it goes…it’s just accepted…i find it revolting and take it on wherever and whenever i can….but in the ultimate analysis just living an authentic life is the best response to male bs. Thank you for a great article, one with heart…as for why these men hate a free woman so much, not hard for me to hazard a guess – F.E.A.R. Inc. A woman at her peak of her game is intimidating to men with huge issues (which most Indian males seem to have). The only way they can keep their egos intact is to continue to keep women down. Thank all the gods for the men who are wonderful, open, admiring and respecting of the female gender. And may their tribe increase!

  73. Dinesh Dileep

    I condemn the personal attacks on these women. But I don’t understand the logic behind generalizing their experiences to judge on the whole male population of kerala. That too, based on comments posted on their facebook fan pages from possibly unverified profiles who may not be even genuine. The article seems biased to me.

  74. Sam

    Beautiful read…Keep up the good work. I admire your passionate discourse of resentment and apathy towards the pathetic state of societal affairs prevalent in my motherland.

    I strongly urge you to come out with a book based on your research and concise observations Hands down, it will be a best seller and set the Kerala book stores on fire…that I promise.

    May your blazing pen continue to scorch the hearts of the loathing, foul-mouthed, cock-suckers ! Peace sister

  75. jayakrishnan menon

    ave been reading this post and since some time and wanted to express my views . The way I look at it is the whole concept can get a caption ” what internet gave Kerala women apart ( from on line shopping)
    The author seems to (as most Kerala females) live in a circumstance where female oppression is injected in to the vains.
    I am vehemently against the view and caption a and do agree that there are people like that. But the point is Kerala men in general are not so bad.
    I bet the author have just seen the rest of the INDIA in books or series or jus like that.
    I studied in gujarath where girls are normal talking to guys. they don’t have to repeatedly check or adjust there dress anticipating people staring at them. No offense and cheers to my sisters in Kerala who don’t do that and just understand the bad look and react rather that expect for it) .
    I challenge the author to figure out if 10% of the male she knows fall in the category she spoke about. (Well I have a list of at least 15% female who are dangerous)

    The author seems to concentrate only on the negative remarks against Ranjini Haridas. I would like to point out Kerala men hate Sreesanth more. Not because he is a bad cricketor but for the attitude. Most of the men in Kerala doesn’t have anything against Manju, asin, amala paul ( who expose more than ranjini) the point is its not gender its the attitude.
    We respect maduri, sree Devi.Kerala men never posted a thing when sania mirza got married in Pakistan, We never stood behind Delhi rape accused, we badly wanted Manju to return to films, we started to hate pritviraj ever since he gave that interview.
    So please stop making it a gender oriented remarks and make it a character or attitude oriented thing. Stop being judgmental and realize.
    To add on at the end I feel Kerala girls are more liberated after marriage. So its about generations too.
    Also I recently read a letter to pm by shenaz treasurywala and tears ran down my eyes too. It was genuine. From bottom of my heart I I’ll put all my energy and capacity to fight that. But not for ranjini or Sreesanth. And again its not gender its attitude that matters.

    1. Rajesh Nair

      One can easily forgive the author a) she is a lady b) it’s her ignorance & lack of credible ( I mean credible ) knowledge, The real challenge/ thread I have seen here are from the male pussies particularly they them self-address as the “so called mallus staying out of Kerala “ .Being a pusseee, Before you abuse your mother land & for that matter its your mother itself, You pussies doesn’t realize that the land has given the birth of you and your grand parents and your grand parents and so on by giving you food , water, shelter, education, cash, social security and what not , Being there and lavishly enjoined each and every blessing from the gods on land , you pussiees arguably abusing and trying to rape the mother land as well the people of Kerala because you morons temporarily may got asylums in to other states or countries? Common
      I studied in kerala and Bangalore, grown up in mother land with lot of pride, started my job in Mumbai, moved to gulf region, was lived & worked 7 years in the California – Bay area , again moved back to Bangalore for couple of years , now back to USA again as part of my profession & I have seen & progressively being part of these various civilization and culture but I have not seen even a single male/ female from any other state or country pro-actively abuse their own mothers, parents & neighborhood just because they are still being or continue to become part of Mallu land. I still don’t understand why these “so called mallus staying out side of Kerala” spitting these quantity of venoms with absolutely no logic behind that relevant to address one gender from the entire state or any other community for that matter
      Unfortunately the so called advanced science not yet or yet to develop a medicine for “jealousy”
      I love my mother land, Period!!!

    2. Anand Sunder Nayak

      Alright. Firstly, you are busted. Your lack of basic English(Grammar or spelling), and the overuse of the word pussy clearly suggests you haven’t moved anywhere outside rural Kerala, forget ‘Bay Area’.
      Secondly, clinging on to false notions of love for the motherland n stepping over problems that have been running for generations won’t get you anywhere.
      If the people who have been staying outside Kerala realise how regressive this society is and decide to be vocal about it, it means they are concerned about the mindset of people like you, not the opposite. Good day!

  76. Neelam


  77. Pamela

    Excellent, thought-provoking article. Misogyny is rife in Kerala, and because girls and boys alike are raised with the mindset that men are above women at all times, the patriarchy is almost self-propelling. We need thinkers and writers like you to open people’s minds, and to make women realise that they are more than mere accessories to their husbands’ lives.

    (On a side note, I was watching the Asianet awards last night, and was declaiming passionately to my parents how I hated Ranjini’s accent, and the airs she put on. And then I read your article, and realised that I’ve been judging her based on simply one facet of her broad personality. I stand by the fact that I don’t like her style of presenting, nor the way she has, as you say, distanced herself from her mother-tongue – but I do think I’m beginning to like what she stands for. I can definitely respect the independence, integrity, and sheer bravado she has in the face of the slanderous masses.)

    1. Tom

      Dont you realise, she loves those slanderous comments. And it has nothing to do with the men in Kerala or the attire she wears, remember Uma from Pepsi ungal choice, she wore tights and sleeveless but people loved her. Ranjini is hated for her arrogance outside her TV life. I love the way she presents, why does it bother you if she speaks manglish. She puts the message across in an interesting way. I bet your malayalam would be littered with english. Ms Menon says Kerala men are sexually frustrated, does she mean that it is because the women here are not willing or are not worth a fuck. Every article has an important ‘if’ here is this article’s
      “If these men are a sampling of most men in Kerala, then it would seem that Malayalee men are inherently crude, disrespectful, and have no fine……..”

  78. Ajmal A

    Highly judgmental about men, Aren’t you Sandhya?? I appreciate what you wrote about bad comments about Ranjini Haridas and Manju Warrier, Because their personal life is none of anybody’s business. But most of the things you wrote is just from ancient times like men don’t like their wives to work after marriage and so on.. seriously??? which era you are living in?? And would you kindly enlighten me why you are judging whole or most malayali men based on the few incidents, DO you really think girls look at Ranjini as an inspiration?? Well, As the girls I know most of them don’t like her… I admit that she’s a trend setter but it was like ages ago because 3g, and 4g have arrived since.. then You see why people adores Jewel and Pearlie maanny of D4D, they are too successful and independent as I know.. People adores them not because they stay in the frame of ideal Kerala women, is it?? I accept You can not please everybody in your life, But you should pay a minimum attention to positive criticisms, If you give that reckless attitude towards criticisms, then you will reap the same.. by this I am not justifying what those people have done.. sure it is bad.. what about Ranjini’s post election photo?? You see What if all people of certain society chose to live like they wish, let it be men or women, then it will be complete anarchy, So the society’s been given certain standards and morals, I agree there are flaws in them, But guess what? No society’s perfect. We all have to work to perfect it.. Seriously I don’t believe in gender equality even though I accept the women’s right for recognition in the society, Because I believe men are women are complementary in a society.. You see equality always does not mean justice.. And why women are being victimized everywhere?? You see there are many incidents like Rohtak incident taking place, we may or may not be aware of. And when it comes to social media abuse, not only Ranjini or Manju are victims, there are many MEN like Prithviraj, Sreesant, etc.. had to go through the social media WAR against them.. SO stop victimizing women only…

  79. philip

    Nice Article…. I have travelled a lot from south to north and in many countries….Before that i was a Stereo typed mallu too so i understand this article is really well written…..
    When i was in college if some girl and boy talks( say 15 years back) then that girl is supposed to be “bad”.Even now if a girl puts some modern dress ….even her own friends will say she is “bad” and if a girl talks freely to boys….now starts another Gossip…..

    To be honest….if you travel even to under developed not so highly educated countries like Bhutan, Tibet,Nepal,Vietnam………you will start to understand….KERALA’S 100% LITERACY is USELESS….because we are all literate for Bread and Butter…but our culture or social development is ZERO!!!…. Because Mallus think they are the best…..ofcourse we are but there are so many others who are BETTER….
    Second and the most important thing is….MALLU’S LIVE FOR OTHERS…..AND THAT IS why mallu’s are always frustrated and sad…. Mallu’s live to make neighbours and community happy…..not their own happiness……
    IF one girl and boy falls in love….why does the “100%” literate society say….they are bad and dont love their parents???? Think Wisely….First of all it is their own freedom…..and secondly…..the son or daughter who loves someone knows and loves their parents more….because they know the VALUE OF LOVE…..

    Kerala society never ever gives freedom to others…..and in a way it looses its own freedom…..think wisely….why doesnt kerala develop even though it has resources and more remittance than other states……yes…the art of self destruction….what else…..

  80. aswathytwits

    A well written article!

  81. aswathytwits

    A well written article! I second you!

  82. Prathibha

    This was an engrossing read. It touched a nerve since I have lived in Kerala most of my life and what you say is spot-on. I had no inkling that Ranjini had such an impact on Malayalam TV anchors! I may have found her pretentious before but now, I realise she deserves my admiration. These hate spewers are probably the molesters we encounter on crowded buses, trains and roadsides.

  83. Sandheep

    First of all, hats off to you, Sandhya Menon, for this brilliant article. The questions asked in the end, if answered, can help solve this and many more issues that our country faces. And therefore hoping a follow up piece from you on the possible solutions to these vexing problems.

  84. Ajp

    A one sided article, the author does nothing better than the idiots who write the comments. She generalizes men in kerala as crude and sexually frustrated and in turn fails to differentiate the moderates and extremes. This is the short coming of the those who post the crude statements against women, they like to disgrace the women who lead an emancipated life, I expected a more intellectual approach.
    The celebrity mentioned uses this hatred to polarize and keep herself still at the center of the conversation through her statements at the end benefiting her and not just female empowerment. The constant cycle of provocation especially the picture she showed she cast vote is a great example for it, a more classy approach would lead to the overall improvement of the situation but highly doubt if that is her intent or that of the author of this article?

    1. Anand Sunder Nayak

      I think how she said it was near perfect. And when she calls the men crude, she isn’t talking about all of us. There will obviously be a section of society which has moved on. But in the majority, a patriarchal mindset remains. Manifestations of this can be noticed in little aspects which are still considered ‘normal’ in our society, something as simple as pillion women sitting sideways on bikes as opposed to facing the rider, as a sign of ‘modesty’. And the fact that a lot of men are happy to let this attitude continue is a dangerous sign.

  85. Anand Sunder Nayak

    Fantastic article. We definitely need more of these! Men in Kerala fail to realise that the things they are fighting for are mostly irrelevant, and the issues they bring out laughable in most of the modern world(like a news article condemning a popular actress buying liquour). Let this be the decade of the independent Kerala woman.

  86. bk_sarkhedi

    Very wonderfully written, hats-off to Sandhya Menon

  87. Abhi

    Brilliantly put, blunt but true. Shows Kerala society a mirror to what it has become.

    We faced a similar issue when a group of youth who apparently had came for a religious gathering in the local temple started harassing girls who were partying well inside their rooms at night. We were accused of ‘illicit activities’ and women dressed ‘inappropriately (read shorts)’ corrupting the minds of their kids.

    Not the kids’ but the adults mind are those which have been corrupted.

    God save God’s own country.

  88. Nikhil

    I see some people here arguing that these girls did not deserve respect for wearing sleeveless or whatever.

    They fail to understand is that a civilized person is not someone who respects those people who fit into his/her stereotype. Any barbarian can do that. A civilized person shows respect to people even though he might differ with them in his outlook or life style. I do not like so many people. That does not mean I feel justified to go spam their pages with disgusting nonsense. He is the one who defends the freedom of anyone to act in a way that repels him personally.

    As far as women dishonoring themselves with loose dress goes, wake up guys this is 2015. Come out of your cocoon and explore the world. It’s not the same world as it was when you were in your mother’s womb. People are free to dress the way they like. Lead their life the way they like. And seriously sleeveless is not a big deal, not even in India

    I have been to Bangalore, Pune and Mumbai and guess what? You will never be judged for what you wear, your lifestyle choice or whether you show off or not. That’s I think what you get of real education and a good upbringing. Maybe that’s the reason, these cities are more civilized , more developed, financial more powerful as compared to other places in India and the world which are relatively backward.

    Again I am not attacking any state or religion. I am just pointing it out that what it means to be really civilised is that you are no longer allowed to dis-respect people or be rude and vulgar to them openly just because they don’t fit into your stone age stereotypes.

    It is the people who make the country they live in what it is and as individuals we have a choice as to what kind of person we want to be. Basically I hope we all can evolve into people who can look in the mirror and like whom they see. Peace to all

  89. Mal gal

    Temple twins- man are you interesting!! Nice blend of sarcasm and humour. Really interesting retorts. Do you write? If so where can we read more. : )

  90. Susan K

    BEAUTIFULLY worded!! Hats off to you! Right in their faces! Lol.

  91. dungarsingh tomar

    Comment i am dungarsigh tomar

  92. Venkat

    Well, Sandhya Menon,

    First of all, let me tell you my nativity is not Kerala, am from a cosmopolitan Chennai but I live for past 25 years and I say a #ProudMalayalee boy..

    Respect cannot be earned through force or coercion. This is applicable whether it is Ranjini Haridas, Rajnikanth, Abdul Kalam or Aiswarya Rai whoever it is. It depends on individuals. I like Rajnikanth for what he is, but I cannot ask you to be his fan follower, even I used to get crass comment from men and women together saying he is “paandi” or “black” (racist again). When you have the rights to criticise the pervertness in the society don’t generalise to all men. Its like saying all people in that particular religion are terrorists which is a parochial view. In a society where women like Saritha nair or Indrani Mukerjee exists, who posed to be a serious threat and nightmare to various law enforcement agencies in India, by breaking various laws-which are meant to protect people, don’t you REALLY FEEL there is this thing called FREEDOM visibly, but exploited? Is it that those people who are in jail have exploited their own Individual freedom? Does it include women too? Does a woman know about her freedom and rights only when it is violated and ends in Jail? And finally do you think that I have to take this example to show you that excess freedom is violated sometimes?? (Some serious questions to challenge you)

    I frankly think not all women have this ideology, What we read from here is excessive man hate and your individual perception. If you have the guts can you stop women being objectified in the Internet if you are that really serious rather than giving sermons..and decide through what means..(blocking sites?) How about your views on women being objectified on the basis of blonde, brunette, redhead by the west? BTW just compare the tweets or messages of Ranjini Vs Sunny, trust me you see more respect among men on Sunny Leonne than Ranjini because of one little thing – “Humility and decency” we men like it simply. Majority of men doesn’t like show offs, fake talk, fake walk, fake behaviour, being hypocratic in public, saying thing in one channel and reversing it in another channel etc., Sunny Leonne’s life as you said, and her carrier is known to even school boys today, we understand her for her humility in admitting things of being porn actress, her life is transparent and honest nothing to hide about her past. Period.

    Finally, a person or individual who likes to give more importance to his own individuality or individual rights than his well-being of his family, or I may say “family unity” can afford for a transgressive lifestyle but don’t impose to society please..Its a reversal of moral policing! Similary patriarcy in your family is different from ours, if your grandparents or your parents treated women in your house as regressive, then that’s your family problem. There are women IAS officers in my family who are in their 60s now, doctors, entrepreneurs, film technicans who are women who have been very successful but I haven’t seen then crying or stooping this lower to claim that they are denied freedom or stopped from studying, or building a feminine resistance. Like the politicians who take ownership of certain religion, shame to note that there is somebody to take ownership of a gender! Phew..!

    On a final note, I should say that feminist views should have tolerance; on the other hand feminists should have tolerance as well. Its not a one way traffic. As a rational men, let me ask you, Imagine the plight of men who do loading/unloading in Railyway station/Bus stand we call them “Porters” specifically in South India, who toil like animals daily from dawn to dusk, men who carry sacks of grains on their back to lorries and stores – I mean the heavy weight jobs, show me one women please? Why not feminists come and give them helping hand by saying women should also participate in these heavy weight jobs? if you don’t have the answers and require a long time for quick rebut, can I call it philogynist or hypocrisy..

    (NB: Didn’t do spellcheck..please bear with it..)

  93. lamer

    People do not hate Ranjini for her gender or appearance. She was very rude with common people in public. She also aggressively spoke against public sentiments and local government in a time of a serious concern. It is not surprising how malayaiees cannot not stand an entitled, shallow person such as her. In Kerala men are also trolled, ever heard of Super star Santosh Pandit? In my opinion Ranjini is worst than him.
    As a person who has travelled and stayed in many states of India I can say with full conviction that malayalee men are way better than others in terms of treating women in their family. I have found them more family oriented and compassionate. You won’t find a man who will toil half of his life in desert for the sake of his family even though he knows that his wife is unfaithful and hussy.
    And people in metro always wondered why malayalee women had so lose morals. Unlike others they sleep around for profit. Still malayalee men marry them with no questions asked.

  94. Johns Pulikottil

    I guess its the way we decide how a person is termed educated . Mere holding a degree doesn’t do. That’s why people have become more intolerant and stupid today. It’s easy to con a educated person (online scams and stuff ) rather than a streetwise paper. Also the state was once famous for the newspaper culture it had. Nowadays People read some crap on the net and think its authentic.So there should be a change in terming people educated or uneducated. Just because a lot of states are behind our state doesn’t Mean we are doing good , there’s room for lot of improvement

  95. Johns Pulikottil

    I like the way Renjini engages the crowd and does emceeying , even I just have the issue with her anglicized Malayalam. The two year thing in London changing her diction. I don’t buy one bit. I can never understand how Dileep keeps getting support of the family audiences after all the ill worked comedies and his own behaviour as a husband . No idea why Manju Warrier Is being ridiculed . I would think of the first one a mistake of the society and the second one carefully orchestrated by Dileep to retain his image . He does have a very good P.R team

  96. Aparrna Ganesh

    First of all, thank you so much for posting this and writing this. Everybody needs to address this. Things in Kerala are so backward it amazes me sometimes. With that being said I always loved ranjini haridas for being this way. But my family? Older people? HATED HER. Everybody thought she was pretty but a SLUT. page 3 was always about her, but slowly it started changing, the media outlook that is, but peoples dierty, shallow minds? No way.
    TO THIS DAY I cannot walk out without a shawl around my body because people will not only stare but say weird shit to each other. I cannot ride my scooter above the speed of 40km/hour or I’ll be shouted at by men in the road saying: YOU’RE A GIRL HOW DARE YOU RIDE THAT FAST OVERTAKING MEN?
    Wow. You ride that fast, you must be a an easy catch. How does me riding my scooter fast equal to an invitation to cat call me? I’m so furious with the community here. It’s pathetically insane.

  97. Naina Nambiar

    I couldn’t agree more to what was written. I couldn’t help myself from rummaging through the comments section to see what fellow keralites think about the whole situation and I should say I wasn’t very surprised to see a significant proportion trying to patronize the OP with well laid out references and examples. I’m no Ranjini fan too, neither is the OP which she clearly states. But what we’re missing out is the bigger picture. A good proportion of us are not realizing these gender roles are nothing but a ruse to subjugate us in to philistine social conformism. 21st century should be no longer be about considering feminism only as a women’s issue. It isn’t a man vs woman situation. It isn’t about picking a fight or hurling insults. It really time to be in this together, to fight the obnoxious horrible social norms and to be the change. I just wish several generations later humanity would refer to millenials with adulation, for making the world a better place!

  98. Nisha Nair

    Sooper article. The only thing I detest about Ranjini is her fake accent.I abhor Dileep for no particular reason and that I see ego written all over him in a very slimy manner.You have written almost every thing as if you read my mind.Truth be told,men are unable to accept a female taking a stand.

  99. Anant Kumar

    “KEHNA KYA CHAAHTE HO BHAI???” globe maar rakha hai… Article/Critique/ or whatever it is…. looks a lot like my HR paper!

  100. Saffronwing1

    I never realised things were so bad in Kerala against women. Because usually here in north, Kerala is given as an example of women’s freedom, education and what-nots.

    Thanks for highlighting this.


  101. Aju Joseph

    This article gives an absolute wring image of Kerala. While I do not want to contest on many things mentioned.. I would really Like to mantion why so much of hate towards Renjini haridas! She is an arrogant, Ill mannered lady who has come up in news with the Video footage on her arrogance.
    1. When she tried to get in front of the queue in airport and shouted at a guy and wrongly accused of him harassing her
    2. When she tried to over react on a stray dog issue in cochin.

    Also there was a Video of her (so called Look alike with an Arab)
    and an other Dual with an experienced Kerala Actor.

    That being said, there are enough of Kerala hostess or girls who try out new glamorous dresses and not been trolled!

    About Kerala and Internet, seriously???? arent other men across the world like this? I hear similar kind of comments about men from around the world. Infact more ladies talk to Kerala Men because they can actually listen and are less horny than others!

    This was a truly BIAS article by a person who hasnt been and interacted with other males across the world!

  102. Krishnaja Sreekumar

    This is just damn precise.. . Ma’m i loved the article…

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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