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Telangana Killing: Dalit Man Murdered In Front Of His Wife, Why Is Modi Govt Silent?

The silence of PM Modi and his ministers on Telangana’s honour killing reflects on their attitude towards other social evils such as rape.

When a husband (and soon-to-be-father) gets killed right in front of his pregnant wife just because he was born in a scheduled caste family does not attract the attention of the Prime Minister, then what else will?

Understandably, a PM is a busy man. Arguably he does not have enough time to address such trivial matters that garner no political mileage.

That said, PM Modi does have time to:

1. Spend hours speaking to the BJP’s  Karyakartas (party workers) while being in public office.

2. Spend hours thanking his fans on Twitter for complimenting his incredible growth chart (let’s drop the facts here).

3. Spend hours travelling across the country giving hour-long speeches before and after elections in personal and public events.

4. Spend hours doing ‘great public service’ by interacting with kids in schools where a CM is already there to inspect the work done.

Our PM celebrating the emerging New India at the cost of social evils being ignored reflects the attitude of the government towards other concerns such as rapes.

Crime Against Women in India

women protest against rape in india

Over four women are raped in India every hour. That means one woman is raped every 15 minutes and a staggering 106 rapes happen in the country every day.

To put it in perspective, 108 kids are born in Singapore every day. That’s some developmental record.

Even worse, four out of ten rape victims in India are minors.

Is the government not aware of this? If yes, then what is this celebration of New India? Are these rape victims free to live a respectable life in this country?

Has the government assured fast track judgement against rapists?

If anything, the government should be ashamed of its silence on crucial matters and hyperactivity on divisive politics.

Is this not a political worry for the Modi government or Rahul Gandhi?

The Congress party has spent hours on press conferences attacking Modi, and the BJP has spent more to counter them. Unfortunately, both have done none against more serious problems.

It appears that the politicians of today are not even interested in talking about discrimination, rapes and many such issues that bring ‘bad light’ to this righteous country.

From what we can hear from the corridors of power, PM Modi doesn’t like to be questioned or criticised. And from the kind of leadership we have seen from the leader, he has kept himself at an arm’s distance from any controversial matter that may push a question down his throat.

Yet, if not the PM, then at least the people can expect the cabinet ministers to give at least a formal statement.

If not, then it is a sheer lack of intent and not for the lack of time because the incumbent ministers are not only handling their individual portfolios but are also ‘helping’ each other out.

The Multi-talented Cabinet

India’s law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad says the BJP will rule for 50 years, rhetoric that would’ve sounded better from the mouth of a party spokesperson.

But since Mr Prasad believes that it’s the BJP’s hard work that will keep it in power, the efforts behind the aforementioned rhetoric can be attributed to his hard-working nature.

It does not come as a surprise that Mr Prasad has not yet held a press conference about the deteriorating state of the judiciary.

From what we know, over 420 vacancies in High Courts across the country remain vacant and that at the current speed of appointments, it would take 15 years for them to fill up.

But that’s not worthy of a press conference for Mr Prasad.

Let’s see then what issues Mr Prasad considers worthy of press conferences.

1. Press conference on the imposition of emergency in 1975 by Indira Gandhi

2. Press conference on Bharat Bandh

3. Press Conference on disruptions caused in Parliament by TMC and Congress

4. Press conference on the 38th foundation day of BJP

5. Press Conference on allegations made by Congress Party regarding Nirav Modi

6. Press Conference on Rahul Gandhi’s blatant lies inside & outside the Parliament

The list is endless, but these do give a gist of his hard work.

Let us not be unfair. Mr Prasad is not the only multi-talented minister of this government since we also have defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

Madam Sitharaman has been busy tackling “anti-india forces” among JNU students.

“They are waging a war against India, pamphlets suggest. Their brochures say that. Such people leading the JNUSU, or JNUSU members, openly participate with such forces. Therefore you do not need to hesitate to say anti-India,” said Ms Sitharaman.

While she occupies herself with ‘party work’, Air Chief Marshal points out that “No country is facing the kind of grave threat that India is confronted with. Intentions of our adversaries can change overnight. We need to match the force level of our adversaries.”

Are the JNU “anti-India elements” a bigger threat to the nation than the concerns pointed out by Chief Marshal?

Is Pranay Kumar’s death a non-issue for the government?

Are the protests happening across the country against non-payment of salaries, discrimination, government failures, etc. a non-issue for the Modi government?

It does appear to be so and if this is how the Modi government proposes to be in power for next 50 years, then some dark days lie ahead for the people in New India, a Chimera.

Originally published at India Protests

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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 Change.org, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on Change.org has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in Change.org’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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