Then came the notorious and draconian dowry law aka the Section 498A of the Indian Penal Code which was non-bailable, cognizable and non-compoundable. Cutting long story short and putting it in layman’s terms, this section provided for immediate arrest of a husband and his family, based on the wife’s complaint even without trial or investigation.
Enter the Domestic Violence Act (D.V. Act), which was so badly drafted that it left no scope for a man to prove him innocent therein, if a case is filed against him. Neither were any offenses properly defined nor was any care taken to abide by principles of natural justice in the law.
Interestingly, when the debate for D.V. Act was going on, woman organizations claimed that, now cases under section 498A would reduce and, D.V. Act would serve as a single window for all matrimonial disputes. However, it did not happen. As usual, the woman organizations were lying and fooling the society, which is more than ready to be fooled by them.
Every matrimonial dispute had both 498A and D.V. Act filed against the husband. This only increased the pressure on the husband to settle the case out of court which clearly meant paying hefty ransom money to the wife who would file false cases at her whim and fancy and then demand alimony to the tune of crores of rupees.
As if this unabated financial, legal and social exploitation of innocent men wasn’t enough, now the media and woman organizations are proposing yet another anti-male provision in the form of “Marital Rape”.
However, few very important questions need to be raised before we even think of bringing in the new legislation containing provisions for penalizing the husband when a wife complains of marital rape.
1. When 498A and D.V. Act already have provisions for sexual abuse, what is the need of a separate law?
2. Will it not lead to multiplicity of litigation in divorce cases increasing the burden on the already burdened courts?
3. Will it not accelerate the formation of a marriage-less and father-less society?
4. Why not scrap 498A and D.V. Act before bringing in the legislation?
5. How did the issue of marital rape suddenly become so relevant for the media whence the whole issue of amending sexual assault laws began with the 16 December incident in Delhi which, in itself is a rarest of the rare cases?
6. Will any woman organization care to answer the above questions to the satisfaction of all sections of the society?
7. Are woman organizations meant only to shout and spread anti-male messages, and do fear-mongering and hate-mongering in the society?
8. Are they not supposed to take some semblance of responsibility and accountability for the illogical demands they make and the disastrous consequences that enthrall upon the society, especially men?
9. Who has given them the authority to waste tax payers’ hard earned money for satiating their personal vendetta against men?
10. When they haven’t taken any responsibility for the misuse of Section 498A and D.V. Act in the past and taken any corrective action for the same, will it be a sane move to bring in yet another more draconian law and assume there wouldn’t be any misuse or social backlash against the same?
Questions are galore, answers are elusive. And while the woman organizations choose to answer these questions, if they may so wish to, I would like to bring up some more serious issues pertaining to marital rape.
Definition of Consent:
Firstly, the very technical definition of rape is sex against consent. Secondly, sex between spouses is a very integral part of marriage. So, invariably sex will be involved in a marriage and in the absence of a concrete and objective definition of consent with regards to marital rape, this provision can become a serious candidate for misuse.
Whenever, a woman would want to break out of marriage, all she needs to say is, “He forced himself onto me, saying that I am his wife and I have to submit to him”. It’s over, marital rape is registered and overnight, the husband becomes a rapist!
There would absolutely be no way to determine the correctness of the issue. Because in the absence of a definition of consent even physical injury is not needed; for when one defines the subjugation of consent subject to the essence of a relationship, quintessentially we are saying, consent is automatically provided and whimsically withdrawn.
Women organizations are not interested in intellectual debate around the issue, nor do they want to provide any tangible or scientific data to testify and support their claims. All they want to do is hooliganism on TV channels, make a lot of noise and get things done without taking any responsibility. It the collective responsibility of the society and the Govt. to stop promoting such socially disastrous elements, rather than giving into their histrionics and passing insane laws.
One more important and critical issue which has been missed out in the entire social discourse pertaining to the issue of marital rape is that of “Marital Rape of Men”.
When women organizations are saying that “Marriage is not a guarantee for lifetime sex”, then this premise applies to both men and women and who will protect men from forced sex in marriages i.e. who will protect men from marital rape in marriages?
1. What if a wife forces a man to do oral sex against his wish?
2. What if a wife forces a man to have sex with him in order to have children even when the man is not prepared to father them?
3. What if a wife has more sex hunger than the man and she keeps on demanding sex from the man against his wish, mood and energy?
4. What if a wife forces a man to have sex with him using derogatory terms like impotent, eunuch (hijra), gay, sissy, faggot, unmanly, etc.?
5. What if a wife threatens to file a case of marital rape, or for that matter, any case, if he doesn’t satisfy her?
6. What, if a man is forced to have sex with his wife under the threat that she will commit suicide if he doesn’t have sex with her?
Above scenarios is a tip of the iceberg of the various types of sexual abuse that men undergo in marriages and survive without protection. But if, the marital rape law is passed in its current form, as suggested by the woman organizations, then who will take care of male victims of rapes?
While the onus and responsibility of protecting men does not fall upon the women organizations, but it does fall upon the government, which is duty bound to protect every citizen and every class of citizens irrespective of gender, caste, creed and sexual orientation. And hence, the government must exercise extreme caution into blindly listening to these anti-male and male hater women organizations, who operate with a mindset of hatred towards men and seem to be more concerned of depriving men of their rights than to ensure women getting their rights.
Already, enough social damage has been done because the government blindly listened to these women organizations and millions of innocent men and women have been thrown behind bars under false cases of Section 498A. The government must not contribute to this figure more by bringing in further blind measures which are driven by stereotypes and assumptions.
And even if the government does so, it must provide a foolproof mechanism for preventing false cases and ensure that the law is not misused even in a single case. And the government must also provide compensation to those individuals who are victims of false cases and have been wrongly arrested.
All those families, whose members have been arrested wrongly, in false cases, must be given Rs. 50 Lakhs as compensation and this amount must be deducted from the budget allocated to women organizations as they are directly responsible for this injustice.
We are inviting extreme social dangers by making another anti-male law by including marital rape which does not even define consent properly. It’s time to make wise choices and not be driven by noise and ill-logic.