Saturday, July 30, 2005

How about legalizing prostitution in India!

India-The land of the Kamasutra!

A couple of friends who returned from international internships mentioned that they were faced with expecations of great and exotic performances in the act of sex, considering that they came from the land of the Kamasutra!

Its kinda very difficult to organize your thoughts when you actually want to pen them down and attempt at making some sense!

I started off to write about hte situation of prostitution in India! So I guess if i necessarily have to(it's beyond my control here) I should wander only in the proximities of the main issue.. else i'll fill up a novel without conveying much of sense!

With all the Bhartiya Sanskruti flowing in our veins, does the idea of legalizing prostitution in India seem outright prepostorous? How easily do we come out with objections, recounting the terrible impact on the moralities of the young and the innocent!

What could be questioned here is who are these young and innocent we're talking about? and what parameters are we measuring them on?

How long would it take before we finally accept the reality as it is and stop living in denial! With all kinds of progress underway, are we still a sexually repressed society where it's taboo to talk about sex publicly... while it's ok to seek sexual favors from a subordinate at office or head to massage parlours to satisfy all your 'needs' or allow other outlets for the expression of your lust!

What's not happening in our own beloved respectable and 'cultured' Indian Society
Premarital Sex and abortions?

Multiple partners?
One night stands?
Teen-age Sex?
High society prostitution- Five star Call girls?
Extra-marital affairs?
Sexual harassment at workplace?
Paedophilic behavior?
Wife Swap Clubs?
Booze and Dope Parties, usually followed by sex with strangers?
Rave parties famous for the sleaze?
Sexual Violence/Molestation?
Prostitution for pocket money or just for fun ?
Sexual desire is not missing any avenue to showcase itself! What then is this moral deprivation we're talking about and whose falling standards are these? We can conveniently refuse to think about it and dismiss all this as high society tensions..and turn a blind eye to what's happening in the next door junior college !

Somehow, whenever hte media talks about prostitution, they only come out with tales of exploitation, of girls picked up from villages and remote places in Nepal.. lured by work.. and sold off to brothels.. and the torture they undergo before they give in to prostitution! They conveniently ignore the realities when young girls often do it for hobby or some extra cash!

And our so called refined, fastidious society quite conveniently looks down upon the sellers of sex! It would probably be too radical to suggest that we start looking at it as just another profession, however, legalizing it, in my opinion, would lead to a positive change in the situation.
You issue them licenses, you train them in basic hygiene and prevention of diseases, you tell them about contraception and you take away that brothel atmosphere that's depressingly full of guilt and sense of social shame. You allow them a life of dignity.. you let their kids not be dragged into the same profession and get education! You do not let depraved cops get the better of their meager earnings...
and yes.. the other dimension of high profile prostitution, there could be a tax dimension to the five star call girls. And yes.. it might actually deter the hobby sex enthusiasts from this money making as they'd hardly dare to go about seeking a license and the situation would at least not be worse.
Yes, the path is full of obstacles, the burghers of social morality wouldn't let it get anywhere.. as individuals, we've come to accepting the realities.. but as a society.. we're yet to come out of our denial mode!
Pray that it happens soon!


Thursday, July 28, 2005

Thoughts on Corruption!

One more post.. only demanding that we wake up and smell the coffee!

I'm adding this paragraph after having written the whole thing, as in retrospect, my thoughts have started to seem like simplistic quibblings of a mind that has not really seen the functionings of the system.. so has no clue how things actually work! However, it's still giving a thought.. as I think!

If you're still interested in reading further then go on!

Before i go into harping about the graveness of the problem.. let me present a picture!

Imagine a government office:
It works six days a week
Three days : Regular file processing- no extra price, no paying anybody. The file shall take a stipulated time (lets say 3 weeks to be cleared), which is known in advance. In any case, for any applicant, the file has to come out in this stipulated time. Or the date of clearance shall be declared in advance, depending upon the load! This is the regular work.

Two days of the week: -Speed processing-There's a certain fees at the office, which speeds up the processing of your file. Instead of three weeks, it'll now be done in a week! (timing is only for namesake... make it months if you like that more) The fees that you pay for this goes to the office corpus, which is distributed among the officials at different levels as performance bonus.

One day every week: Express processing: These files shall receive special attention and cleared on the same day! But this express service comes with a price.. which is a pretty high one! work overtime.. or do whatever.. if the office is accepting a file on express service, it has to be clear the same day! lets say they accept only a limited no. of files (according to what they can handle)
The fees again goes into the corpus.. and of course.. as performance bonus to the officers according to their level!

The current basic issue with babudom is all six days of the week the files have to be loaded with some 'weight' in order to move forth... hence.. a guy who can't afford to pay the bribes.. would take three months instead of three weeks as all the time goes to the high paying files!

Effectively the new situation would be as good as corruption in terms of paying up the babus.. and also speeding up the work for those who want it that way !.. but we hit a roadblock when it comes to the tendency of people not to work.. because this demands high degree of work from all concerned..( they're getting paid extra for this damn it! ) Laziness has to be gotten over and stamped under the feet by the office in-charges! They're also free to organize parties with the funds collected on the official corpus! This way they wont' even have a complaint that the government salary is not sufficient to sustain their lives!

Another major roadblock is the conventional human psyhology! Whatever claims we might make about the sacrificial nature of Indians and their love for fellow beings.. each one wants the biggest share of the pie. (more often, he wants the whole pie to himself) We don't want to share the success! which created operational troubles on this plan! but i guess the individual in-charge at this office should be left alone to handle this situation on his own! If we're to make the whole blue print.. what's he there for!

Do I have to tell what are the problems created by corruption at this moment! Call it my perversity or whatever.. but I am not so averse to the whole concept.. If the government doesn't pay a guy enough to sustain a happy life.. He will have to look for alternate sources of money.. and you can't blame him for wanting to be happy!
But then.. I seem to have an issue (a really big one) when the ones honestly incapable of paying up are harrassed and neglected.. coz the greed for money makes us lose our head!

Desire is the sign of life.. nothing wrong with that.. but be willing to share the booty.. be willing to work. and be willing to serve.. let the nation prosper.. and you take your share of the prosperity.. don't try to get rich overnight.. jeopardizing the nation and society's future.. or I'll shoot you in the head!




Non-vital Stats!

somebody mailed me these statistics.. thinking that it might make me stop and think!

did it?

i don't know..but here they go!

95 in every 1000 children born in India, do not see their fifth birthday
•70 in every 1000 children born in India, do not see their first birthday
•1 out of every 6 girls does not live to see her 15th birthday
•Of the 12 million girls born in India, 1 million do not see their first birthday
•Of the 12 million girls born in India, 3 million do not see their fifteenth birthday, and a million
of them are unable to survive even their first birthday.
•One-third of these deaths take place at birth
•Every sixth girl child's death is due to gender discrimination
•Females are victimised far more than males during childhood
•1 out of every 10 women reported some kind of child sexual abuse during childhood, chiefly by known persons
•1 out of 4 girls is sexually abused before the age of 4
•19% are abused between the ages of 4 and 8
•28% are abused between the ages of 8 and 12
•35% are abused between the ages of 12 and 16
•3 lakh more girls than boys die every year
•Female mortality exceeds male mortality in 224 out of 402 districts in India
•Death rate among girls below the age of 4 years is higher than that of boys. Even if she escapes infanticide or foeticide, a girl child is less likely to receive immunisation, nutrition or medical treatment compared to a male child
•53% of girls in the age group of 5 to 9 years are illiterate
•Every year 27,06,000 children under 5 years die in India. And the deaths of girl children are higher than those of male children.
•Only 38% of India's children below the age of 2 years are immunized
•74% of India's children below the age of 3 months are anemic
•Amongst married women in India today, 75% were under age at the time of their marriages
•While one in every five adolescent boys is malnourished, one in every two girls in India is
Children are often treated as the "property" of the very adults who are supposed to take care for them, being ordered around, threatened, coerced, silenced, with complete disregard of them as "persons" with rights and freedoms.
•17 million children in India work, as per official estimates, NGOs numbers though are higher at 100 million
•They work for 12 - 15 hours a day and earn less than Rs.3 per day.
•They work with explosives, metals, and poisonous gases from the age of 3 - 4 years.
•1 out of 4 children work… at cost of a childhood.
•There are approximately 2 million child commercial sex workers between the age of 5 and 15 years and about 3.3 million between 15 and 18 years
•They form 40% of the total population of commercial sex workers in India
•80% of these are found in the 5 metros
•71% of them are illiterate
•500,000 children are forced into this trade every year
•Mentally/physially challenged girls are at a particular risk to violence and abuse



Thursday, July 21, 2005

Hey Fellow youth.. are we doing enough for our country??

A connection through NEN got me and a few friends to represent the ' Indian Youth' at an MTV talk show.. topic of discussion being 'Are the youth doing enough for the country?'

We reach the studio a little later than asked but still well in time.. the producers of the show seemed to be youth themselves.. a fairly good looking lady took us through the preparation of a discussion which seemed to be a rather serious one aimed at provoking throught and driving us into some action!

Dressed in western outfit, her demeanour through the preparatory discussion is impressive in terms of looking genuinely concerned and interested in the real issue!

Ok.. we're hauled into the studio.. where we're given the do's and don'ts by another guy who seems to be the head behind the whole thing.. and obviously thinking of youth motivation while at MTV was quite a deal!

At the studio, the connections with Delhi and Bangalore.. for a three-city discussion take a while.. which is as long as over an hour.. so we're generally sitting there.. ten of us (the youth) generally chatting up and killing time.. The spot boys are busy listening to the camera guys..arranging the couches and other forms of seating (or wooden pillars i should say) by color combination/symmetry and blah blah blah!

Already tired of waiting.. we are then comforted by welcoming our guest for the show that's the famous Cyrus Broacha.. and the show's hosted by the popular Cyrus Sahukar..

Over the next several minutes.. Mr. Broacha entertains us with his supreme sense of humor and his infinte capacity to talk! Imagine.. wanting to get out of the show because you've had enough humour... while you'd come in for a sensible discussion!

The discussions stays on the topic for a minute or so.. before we need to have a commercial break.. and there's a retake because the host missed out the sponsor's name while stating the name of the show.. another cut coz the host gave away Sanjay Dutt's jacket instead of his suit as a giveaway prize.. and additionally there are over a dozen cuts.. trying to remind Mr. Brocha.. that he has to let others speak.. that he doesnt' have to interrupt just about everyone to indulge his humorous tongue!

At the end of some five hours.. it's a relief that the thing seems to be close to getting over.. only thing we feel subjected to high degrees of exposure to Mr.Brocha's excessive apptetite for talking.. and while we were looking initially for some sensible talk.. we'd soon discovered that its not gonna get anywhere.. and it was only a gimmick for the independence day special episode!

We come out with a tired of humor head, an aching back.. and an irritated intellect!

So this is what the youth of the country is doing.. impersonated thoughtful youth on TV shows..looking at raunchy music videos on MTV... who doesn't think it's viable to play a few nationalistic songs once in a while.. and producing money making shows for it.. getting huge sponsorships..and using the thoughts of the modern day youth as a filler between the ads of the 24 sponsors!

The show's gonna be on Air on 13th Aug.. its called 'Kya baat hai' sorry.. 'MTV and Hutch Kya Baat hai' and I'm sure to be on air..DON'T MISS IT!!