“Hey, congrats on becoming a chartered accountant, dear. I am so proud of your achievement,”, I congratulated my female friend.
“Thank you so much, it feels so relieving”, she heaved a great sigh of relief.
“What next? Job or practice?”
“I am looking to pursue an MBA course.”
“Why? Join some company or start your own practice, gain three or four years’ worth of experience, and then you can go for an MBA for professional elevation.”
“Haha, I don’t have three or four years. My mom and dad have asked me to do a job/higher studies – whatever I feel like – for the next two years. Within this period, they’ll start looking for a suitable boy so that I can get married within the next two to two-and-a-half years.”
“What? Are you kidding? Do you even realise that you have cracked probably the toughest professional examination in India? The industry needs hard-working professionals like you badly.”
“Yeah, you are right, but I can’t go against the decision of my parents, can I?”
“Yeah, that’s right, but you can continue your job after marriage as well. Gain this experience, gain some more post-marriage, and then go for an MBA which can push you up in your career.”
“Are you serious? How can I continue my job/business after marriage? I’ll be a married female then.”
“What rubbish are you speaking? Won’t your husband continue his job/business? Won’t he be a married male?”
“Hardik, you don’t know about these rituals and traditions. It’s really easy to oppose from the outside, but becomes really difficult when you’re in the thick of it. I can’t oppose my parents over my career dreams and goals. My in-laws would hardly care about my dreams and goals. I can just hope that my husband would be different, but even he wouldn’t be in favour of marrying an ‘ambitious, career oriented girl’. I’ll have to keep aside these career goals to make everyone happy.”
Have you reached this far? Thank god, I thought that like most other ‘intellectual’ people of this country, you would also start framing opinions just on the basis of title. How rude is the writer? He’s just another patriarchal member of this male-dominated society. Let’s boycott his writings. How can he even write that women should be killed inside the womb? Oh, forget this creep, let’s just shout “Save The Girl Child”, “Save Girls”, blah blah blah.
I would still say the same thing: don’t stop female foeticide. As soon as you come to know that a girl child is about to be born, kill her inside the mother’s womb. She doesn’t deserve to be born. Why? Because you may save her initially from being killed inside the womb, but then you and everybody else surrounding her kill her every day, every moment. She has to suffer those pains every day – then why can’t we just give her that pain in one shot and end it? Kill her in mother’s womb; so that she can bear the pain all at once.
Let me tell you how you kill her every day, bit by bit. First, you kill her when you kill your inner ambitions of having a baby boy first – “Although we wanted a baby boy, there are no issues if we have a girl. Next time, if a boy comes to our family, it will be complete.” Why isn’t it complete with just a girl?
Next, she has to struggle every day, every month and every year to convince you to make arrangements for her higher studies – she completes 12th and you say “enough”. She somehow convinces you to let her go for graduation, and you say, “Okay, but graduation is enough”. She has to struggle so hard to convince you about higher studies, and finally, you say, “What will come of studying so much? It’ll be difficult for us to look for a boy later.”
She clears her higher studies with exceptional academic performance and gets placed in a multinational company, but instead of applauding her for her laurels, you give her a time period – “You have two years, do what you want. We will marry you off after that.” Really? Do you realise that even companies want their employees to perform over a period of four to five years? How can your meritorious daughter achieve her dreams in just two years?
“Why do you need to re-locate to another city? No need, compromise with whatever opportunities are available in this here. Don’t act as if you are going to lead some multinational company someday.” And so, you kill her again – her and her dreams.
Then comes time for her marriage, and you auction her. You sell your material, and you pay the consideration in the form of ‘gifts’and ‘dowry’. You chose a boy who earns so well and is settled, but never think of asking him if he will allow your daughter to earn and get settled in her life. Why? When the husband is settled – what is the need for the wife to get settled in life. Is her brilliant academic performance only so she can fetch a higher price for herself? You kill her very much that particular day, when she is bought by her in-laws and her husband.
Oh, how could I forget about all the rapes, eve-teasing, and domestic abuse that can happen to her over the years? Don’t they kill her internally? Yes, they very much do.
After she is married, she is again killed by in-laws and her husband. Sometimes, when she commits a mistake; other times, when she couldn’t bring herself to beg for post-marriage expenses from her parents; and yet other times, when her husband and in-laws think that the dowry wasn’t enough.
Why am I using the terms ‘sell’ and ‘auction’ here? Because you commodify her. Through those advertisements where a hapless boy can attract a cute girl just by using a particular brand of perfume. You commodify her – when you use the word ‘maal’ to describe her with great esteem and self-respect.
Isn’t she thus killed at each stage of her life? Do you ever think about the pain she has to bear all this while? Isn’t this pain even worse than the pain of death? If it is so, isn’t it OK to kill her inside the womb, when she doesn’t even know about the pain lying ahead of her?
Let’s start this process of killing girl children, so that these girls don’t have to bear this pain. Or can we, as a ‘highly male-dominated society’, full of ‘intellectual people’, finally realise the importance of this population? Why can’t we give them enough space?
Come on, 25, 26, 27, 28 – these are just numbers. Let’s not make these out to be the ideal age for marriage or something. Instead, let’s ask these beautiful girls to compete with the boys, and see who gets settled at the age of 30.