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We Finally Have A Panel On Sexual Harrassment In Workplaces. And They Decided To Put A Man In Lead

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Among the many names that India can be called as a nation, from a democracy to a hypocrisy, the best suited term in the current day scenario could be ‘ironical’. India is an ironical nation. And we say that after much deliberation because we take two steps forward and then four steps back.  We say this because, and we are just exhausted at this point, the recently appointed head of the panel for Sexual Harrassment in Workplaces, is Mr. Amit Shah. Of course, the panel consists of more people, including Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani and HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhrial Nishank. But the matter of concern here is how the government may have made a wrong decision by appointing a man as the head of the panel that to a large degree concerns women.  Before you go up in arms, this concerns men too, but let’s be real, this has got to do more with women than with men.

Now, we don’t mean women should get a position at the head of the table for being in possession of a vagina. No, really. Our inference is much deeper that that. It comes from how things have panned out before this.  Like, in light of the #MeToo movement, that had not started earlier in India due a sense of fear amongst women that the men in power would use their position against them. Which in many cases could be true. We do not need another man sitting at the top and making decisions. Whether he makes the right decision or not is secondary. Just a man being there could mean intimidation and hesitation are back in the picture, things that have been proven to be stumbling blocks in the first place.

Also Read : Deepika Padukone Working With #MeToo Accused Luv Ranjan Has Us And Twitter All Riled Up And Rightly So!

And if for the sake of this very important conversation, we were to make peace with the decision of a man heading a panel as such and were to put our faith in the system, putting Amit Shah in that position still does not make much sense. This is a man accused of illegal surveillance on a young woman, in a previous investigation and that doesn’t affirm my faith in anything.

The entire point of setting up such panels and committees is to deliver the justice that has been denied for far too long. And a major part of it comes from the women of the country feeling safe to be able to take that legally. So naturally, when politicians like Amit Shah or M J Akbar or even Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, get called out for sexual misconduct, and then are put in charge of women’s committees, we have our reservations. . How are we expected to believe that there would be no bias, when the man incharge himself has been caught illegally snooping on a young woman for days? In what world does this make sense? Or are we really out of better options despite having women on the panel?

Also Read : Former CJI Suggests Marital Rape Should Not Be A Crime. We Think That’s Nonsense

The entire point of revolutionising the #MeToo movement was to hear to what the women want. And if you’re asking us, this is not what we want. We want justice, and while we understand we may not get it all on our terms, putting Amit Shah, or any other man incharge of the panel is still unacceptable.

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