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A 14 Year Old’s Thoughts On Marital Rape: When ‘Sacredness’ Is The Reason Behind ‘Lawlessness’

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By Akshat Tyagi

As the honourable Minister of State for Home Affairs stood up for ‘clarifying’ that the government did not host any plan to criminalise marital rape since India wasn’t prepared for it, where marriage is still a very sacred institution, he left everyone, from feminists to housewives, absolutely shocked about government’s stand on the subject. We hence chose to step backward on women’s rights.

What ‘preparation’ does law demand to come into force? And how can the ‘sacredness’ of an institution be the reason for lawlessness?

For Representational Purposes Only
For representational purposes only

The very approach of treating marriage and acts within marriage as sacred makes these visible atrocities invisible to law.

What about the thousands of untold tales of women where men became their worst nightmares? This may be one of the very factors of National Crime Records Bureau’s recent report indicating very worrisome levels of women suicide, more than half of which consisted of house-wives. Many cases of violence within marriage are never reported, and remarks like the Minster’s have the potential of swelling these latent domestic violence cases by massive figures.

In 2013, NCRB reported over 118,000 domestic violence cases, which made up a third of all crimes against women, far ahead of molestation (70,739) and rape (33,707). The number of reported domestic violence cases also shot up from a mere 50,703 in 2003 before the passage of the Domestic Violence Act of 2005.

In a country where it is believed that subtle beatings by husband are not domestic violence at all, it is hard to imagine the levels of disguised dangers threatening our women. “United Nation defines acts of physical violence by the husband against his wife as pushing, shaking, throwing something at her, slapping, arm twisting, hair pulling, punching, kicking, dragging, beating, trying to choke or burn her on purpose, and threatening her or attacking her with a weapon.

Marital Rape final
Illustration by Maitri Dore

Also, according to a report, “The United Nations Populations Fund study also found that 60% of men admitted to using violence—kicking, beating, slapping, choking, and burning—to establish dominance.

Again, do we excuse ourselves for not being prepared?

Two out of five married women have been subjected to spousal violence at least once. And most of these women suffer this violence in silence. Many Indian women do not even have the realization that any sexual act performed against her will, even by her husband, is ‘rape’.

Shouldn’t this be worrying us as a nation? How much longer can we let women suffocate in patriarchal domination that results in rapes and harassment till we acknowledge the problem?

Love can be sacred, marriage can be sacred, so can be sex. But violence or rape cannot.

You must be to comment.
  1. Batman

    Women like to withhold sex, and control it after marriage to treat their husbands like chattel and emotionally blackmail them to get things done.

  2. B

    Men are not seen as human beings in society, that is why we never talk about the biases that men face on a daily basis, women usurp half of men’s properties during divorces, courts give men stricter sentences for the same crimes that women commit, juries give verdicts against men in domestic disputes, women usurp half of men’s properties in divorce, men give alimony to women, misandry in the media, sexism against men, domestic violence against men, how men are locked up in false cases of rape, dowry, and domestic abuse, more than 3 times as many men die due to dowry harassment from women, domestic violence statistics do not take into account verbal and psychological abuse that men suffer from at the hands of their wives, yet we talk about violence being a woman’s issue.

    A man is assaulted by his wife/girlfriend every 14.6 seconds.

    http://www.chowrangi.pk/domestic-violence-against-men.html

    When husbands are victims of domestic violence

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/relationships/man-woman/When-husbands-are-victims-of-domestic-violence/articleshow/26031858.cms

    Why are so many MEN becoming victims of domestic violence?

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2518434/Why-MEN-victims-domestic-violence-Its-Britains-remaining-taboos-abuse-men-home-rise.html

    A Hidden Crime: Domestic Violence Against Men Is a Growing Problem

    http://www.dailyfinance.com/2010/01/30/a-hidden-crime-domestic-violence-against-men-is-a-growing-probl/

    Women More Likely to Commit Domestic Violence, Studies Show

    http://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/crime/item/19133-women-more-likely-to-commit-domestic-violence-studies-show

    Male domestic abuse victim: men are scared to come forward

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/30303405/male-domestic-abuse-victim-men-are-scared-to-come-forward

    More than 40% of domestic violence victims are male, report reveals

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/2010/sep/05/men-victims-domestic-violence

    1. Shruthi

      Why is it that everytime there’s an article about problems that women face, there’s always somebody trying to derail that conversation by posting the problems that men face. This is frankly annoying. Nobody is saying that men don’t have their own set of problems. We all know men also get raped, assaulted, abused etc.

      BUT this is not the place to discuss those issues. You want to highlight men’s issues? Write your own damn article about it and post it. Don’t derail or shift the focus from women’s issues here. We have enough people denying or downplaying the severity of violence against women.

    2. Monistaf

      @Shruti, this article cries foul that marital rape is not covered under the rape law (section 375) and that it should be. When you consider that section 375 excludes half the population of India from being victims of rape (Men cannot be victims and women cannot be perpetrators), but are fighting for marital rape to be included, it sounds a bit absurd, especially in light of the “gender equality” hypothesis that feminists like to think they are fighting for. And, it is the feminists who are vehemently opposed to making section 375 gender neutral, but they want to push for marital rape to be included, in spite of the fact that it is already AGAINST the law, which the article conveniently ignores.

  3. Jigsaw

    If you watch Aitraaz, there are many women like the character played by Priyanka Chopra, who rape men, but it is not legally a crime.

  4. B

    According to NCRB Data, there were 2,22,091 arrests related to 498A in 2013 alone. A man is arrested every 3 minutes for dowry – 98% cases are false.

    From 2005 to 2008, as many as 22,000 men have ended their lives in reverse dowry harassment after allegedly being tormented by their wives. In contrast, dowry harassment has driven 6,800 women to suicide.

    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/chandigarh/Harassed-over-dowry-men-demand-fair-play/articleshow/5241108.cms

    Since the media is bigoted and biased, it shows women as dowry victims whereas more than 3 times as many men commit suicide due to harassment from wives. The number of men victims of 498A alone outweigh all crimes against women.

  5. Monistaf

    Marital rape IS against the law. It is one of the violations in the domestic violence act of 2005. It is not a violation of IPC section 375, which deals with rape, but it definitely violates one of the provisions of the DV act of 2005. Yes, it carries a lighter sentence than IPC section 375. How come we are all so concerned about marital rape, but have absolutely NO concerns whatsoever for the millions of boys and men who are victimized by rape? Does the UN only define domestic violence in terms of a female victim? Does anyone care about boys and men at all, in spite of the fact that they are the overwhelming majority of victims of violent crime?

  6. tyson

    Guys what is this, Defending men in comments? This post is to make an awareness about martial rape. Its not saying all men are evil.
    In today’s world everyone is equal, so treat them as equals.

    1. Monistaf

      “In today’s world everyone is equal”, except that some are “more” equal than others, and there in lies the problem. I am not saying that Marital rape is not a problem, it very much is and there is clearly a law against it. Look it up, page 64 of the Domestic Violence act of 2005. So, this article is not well researched at all.

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