Her Consent Matters
|   Mar 18, 2017
Her Consent Matters

The festival of colors just passed our calendars …while the Holi celebrations look so glamorous in the Bollywood movies, with “balam pichkari and rang barse “songs … reality is, not many of us like to be soaked in water and spoil our skin with colors. But the beauty of these celebrations is…they unite us and get people together … and no matter what, worries just vanish for those moments.

After days of discussions and chat on Whatsapp, the women and kids met in the society lawn to celebrate Holi. It was fun to see each one so engrossed in the celebration...forgetting all the homely chores. The women…Oops the girls…that’s what they had turned into, danced until they dropped… on the tunes of “Rang Barse” as if they could see Amitabh standing right there and watching their moves. It was super entertaining…worth getting colored drenched in water. Soon everybody got into the swimming pool…I was a bit hesitant…but I was dragged into the pool even before I could say no.

Soon I saw Jigya coming towards me and calling me out of the pool. I went near her…she said Rehea was crying as Ronit was putting water on her and troubling them.Rehea and her friends were sitting in the play area after playing…drying themselves in the sun… and Ronit and his friends were again putting water on them with their pichkari. The girls were getting irritated and requested not to put water on them…but they barely heard what the girls said and enjoyed troubling the girls…all they said was “ bura na mano … Holi hai “.

 I also requested Ronit not to put water on them…and asked him to go and play with the boys as they were still playing, unlike the girls who were trying to dry themselves … he again very firmly said … “ Aunty…bura na mano … Holi hai” and kept doing it over and over again. I was annoyed by his behavior… as if the Holi slogan gave him the right to do what he wants. I took it sportingly and told Rehea, it was Holi and she is bound to get wet… to which my little one asked me… can somebody force things on her even if she doesn’t like, I had nothing to say…I smiled at her and took her home.

That night I couldn’t sleep, every time I tried to close my eyes… I could hear Ronit’s voice “ bura na mano, Holi hai” and Rehea trying to get rid of him. I know they were kids and it was not a grave issue that I had to be awake. Next day morning, I discussed it with Vipul, and being a father he too was little concerned… but at the same time, he asked me to relax and not to over think about it.

My only question, to all the mother’s, is... do you set rules and guidelines for your kids be it a boy or a girl. I mean, are all the rules only for girls … how to dress, how to behave, when to be back home etc. etc. Are these rules not applicable for boys … even the young ones…because that’s what they are going to follow for the rest of their life. Had Ronit’s mother been equally worried and responsible for his behavior… I would have slept peacefully and moreover, I would have confidently told Rehea that nobody can force things on her.

I urge each one to give it a thought … It is not Rehea’s and Ronit’s story alone … every day such incidences happen… some voice it out… some get heard and others get ignored. It’s you to decide and act wisely before it’s too late.

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