Eazy Foreign Languages

This blog is about German and French Language in Vijayawada. Articles, poems, songs and experiences of poolabala

Monday, January 23, 2012

Polyandry bloom in India


sharing wife
What is the future of Indian marriage? 

"They took me whenever they wanted -- day or night. When I resisted, they beat me with anything at hand, sometimes they threw me out and made me sleep outside or they poured kerosene over me and burned me.” said Munni.  When Munni arrived in a small village in UP of north India as a young bride years ago, little did she know she would be forced into having sex and bearing children with her husband's two brothers who had failed to find wives. "My husband and his parents said “Share bed with his brothers," said the woman in her mid-40s, dressed in a yellow sari, sitting in a village community centre in Baghpat district in Uttar Pradesh. Munni managed to leave her home after three months only on the pretext of visiting a doctor. Munni has three sons from her husband and his brothers, has not filed a police complaint either. Such cases are rarely reported to police because women in these communities are seldom allowed outside the home unaccompanied. So there may be many more women like Munni in the mud-hut villages of the area. "I've got used to it," she says holding her third child in her lap. "I miss my freedom."

This practice is gradually becoming acceptable among such close-knit communities because the victims are afraid of speaking out and the neighbours unwilling to interfere. Some villagers say the practice of brothers sharing a wife has benefits, such as the avoidance of division of family land and other assets amongst heirs.  It looks like the country is going towards matriarchal society.  The turn of wheel of time may bring woman dominant society. For example, 1900s began with privatization which changed to nationalization and now the theme is again privatization. 

Polyandry is not new to India. It is an age old tradition. Polyandry's roots sink deep into the soil of Buddhist and Hindu culture here. This tradition comes from the five brothers, Pandavas, of the Indian epic called the Mahabharata. According to the legend, Pandavas  married one woman called Draupadi. Which means Polyandry. The Jaunsari tribes in the Himalayas are still following the same tradition. They claim that Pandavas are their forefathers. They say “we are following what our ancestors did.” The tribal community is practicing Polyandry many for generations. A Jaunsari woman can marry many men. Its their part of life, if a guy marries a woman then she marries his brothers too. Once we believed that polyandry was limited to jaunsuri community. But now we realized that it is spreading through out the country insidiously. 
 Don’t judge the current situation by watching New Delhi where girls clad in jeans ride motor bikes and women occupy senior positions in multi-nationals. Just two hours drive from New Delhi, the mud-and-brick villages of Baghpat appear a world apart. Here, women veil themselves in the presence of men, are confined to the compounds of their houses as child bearers and home makers, and are forbidden from venturing out unaccompanied. Village men farm the lush sugarcane plantations or sit idle on charpoys, or traditional rope beds, under the shade of trees in white cotton tunics, drinking tea, some smoking hookah pipes while lamenting the lack of brides for their sons and brothers. The figures speak.  According to India's 2011 census, there are only 858 women to every 1,000 men in Baghpat district, compared to the national sex ratio of 940.

  
Decades of aborting female babies in a deeply patriarchal culture has led to a decline in the women population in India, which has resulted in rising incidents of rape, human trafficking and the emergence of "wife-sharing" amongst brothers. The practice of female foeticide has flourished across India because of a traditional preference for sons, who are seen as old-age security.

A study in the British medical journal Lancet found that 12 million Indian girls were aborted over the last three decades -- resulting in a skewed child sex ratio of 914 girls to every 1,000 boys in 2011 compared with 962 in 1981. This kind of a trend prevails nowhere else in the world. No other country in the world women is meted with such atrocious treatment. World economic forum statistics reveal that there is little gender equality in IndiaIndia stands in 217th position in gender equality among 234 countries. Despite laws making pre-natal gender tests illegal, India's 2011 census indicated that efforts to curb female feticide have been futile. Fewer girls were born than boys and the number of girls under six years old plummeted for the fifth decade running.
Still traditionalists say that woman is respected in India. Indian cinema highlights that India is the country that defines mother and motherhood. Is this the way to respect women? Leave alone respecting women we are not letting women live.  

The terrible impacts of falling numbers of females should be taken as a warning sign and we have to do something about it or we'll have a situation where women will constantly be at risk of kidnap, rape and much, much worse still leads to secret practices. "In every village, there are at least a dozen bachelors who can't find a wife. In some, there are up to three or four unmarried men in one family. Everything is hush, hush. No one openly admits it, but we all know what is going on “one daughter-in-law living with many unwedded brothers.” Some people raise objections to this new culture while others see polyandry as a way to woman empowerment.  As a civilized society, all over the world divorces and remarriages are acceptable. So who knows in the future, there are chances of this tradition could be popular surprise in the evolution of many surprises for humans. 

According to Indian historian Sarva Daman Singh, who wrote the 1988 book “Polyandry in Ancient India.” The husband in polyandry Kaza, Baldev Nath, 50, said that “everyone is pleased” with their shared-spouse arrangement, including his older brother and their common wife.  Women's rights activists say breaking down these deep-rooted, age-old beliefs is a major challenge. "The real solution is to empower girls and women in every way possible," says Neelam Singh, head of Vatsalya, an NGO working on children's and women's issues. "We need to provide them with access to education, healthcare and opportunities which will help them make decisions for themselves and stand up to those who seek to abuse or exploit them." 

While other women compare polyandry with polygyny( having many wives at the same time) And question” when a husband can have two or three wives at the same time why not a wife can have two or three husbands at the same time. It is accepted and practised in Hindu culture as well as Islamic culture. Many Hindu gods have more than one wife. Politicians and cine stars and celebrities have them. They also question the logic of allowing Muslim men to have more than one spouse while denying the same ‘right’ to women. 
Dr. Zakir Naik says polyandry is prohibited in Islam. He explains “A lot of people, including some Muslims, question let me first state emphatically, that the foundation of an Islamic society is justice and equity. Allah has created men and women as equal, but with different capabilities and different responsibilities.
Men and women are different, physiologically and psychologically. Their roles and responsibilities are different. Men and women are equal in Islam, but not identical.
Surah Nisa’ Chapter 4 verses 22 to 24 gives the list of women with who you can not marry and it is further mentions in Surah Nisa’ Chapter 4 verse 24 "Also (prohibited are) women already married"

1. If a man has more than one wife, the parents of the children born of such marriages can easily be identified. The father as well as the mother can easily be identified. In case of a woman marrying more than one husband, only the mother of the children born of such marriages will be identified and not the father
2. Man is more polygamous by nature as compared to a woman.

3. Biologically, it is easier for a man to perform his duties as a husband despite having several wives. A woman, in a similar position, having several husbands, will not find it possible to perform her duties as a wife
 Allah, in His Infinite Wisdom, has prohibited polyandry.
One distinct advantage with polyandry is population control. Husbands may be two or three but wife is only one to bear children. So the population control takes place naturally. Apart form population controls the economic and domestic burdens can be shared. The income of multiple husbands helps family to tide over financial problems. Often one female will find it very advantageous to have several males support her in childrearing, whether or not they have outside sexual interests. Whether or not we care to admit it, a lot of childrearing and household tasks tend to fall to women still, and this seems to be a comfortable combination of traditional and disruptively new problem-solving structure for a nice environment for a household. One should wait and watch whether or not Polyandry is synonymous with female empowerment. Who knows what is in store for women as men? 
Child sex ratios in Baghpat are even more skewed and on the decline with 837 girls in 2011 compared to 850 in 2001 -- a trend mirrored across districts in states such as Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan and Gujarat. Women from Jharkhand and West Bengal were paid sums of 15,000 by middle-men and brought here to wed into a different culture, language and way of life. "It was hard at first, there was so much to learn and I didn't understand anything. I thought I was here to play," said Sabita Singh, 25, who was brought from a village in West Bengal at the age of 14 to marry her husband, 19 years her elder.

Decades of aborting female babies in a deeply patriarchal culture has led to a decline in the women population in India, which has resulted in rising incidents of rape, human trafficking and the emergence of "wife-sharing" amongst brothers. The practice of female foeticide has flourished across India because of a traditional preference for sons, who are seen as old-age security.

A study in the British medical journal Lancet found that 12 million Indian girls were aborted over the last three decades -- resulting in a skewed child sex ratio of 914 girls to every 1,000 boys in 2011 compared with 962 in 1981. This kind of a trend prevails nowhere else in the world. No other country in the world women is meted with such atrocious treatment. World economic forum statistics reveal that there is little gender equality in India. India stands in 217th position in gender equality among 234 countries. Despite laws making pre-natal gender tests illegal, India's 2011 census indicated that efforts to curb female feticide have been futile. Fewer girls were born than boys and the number of girls under six years old plummeted for the fifth decade running.
Still traditionalists say that woman is respected in India. Indian cinema highlights that India is the country that defines mother and motherhood. Is this the way to respect women? Leave alone respecting women we are not letting women live.  
The terrible impacts of falling numbers of females should be taken as a warning sign and we have to do something about it or we'll have a situation where women will constantly be at risk of kidnap, rape and much, much worse still leads to secret practices. "In every village, there are at least a dozen bachelors who can't find a wife. In some, there are up to three or four unmarried men in one family. Everything is hush, hush. No one openly admits it, but we all know what is going on “one daughter-in-law living with many unwedded brothers.” Some people raise objections to this new culture while others see polyandry as a way to woman empowerment.  As a civilized society, all over the world divorces and remarriages are acceptable. So who knows in the future, there are chances of this tradition could be popular surprise in the evolution of many surprises for humans. 

According to Indian historian Sarva Daman Singh, who wrote the 1988 book “Polyandry in Ancient India.” The husband in polyandry Kaza, Baldev Nath, 50, said that “everyone is pleased” with their shared-spouse arrangement, including his older brother and their common wife.  Women's rights activists say breaking down these deep-rooted, age-old beliefs is a major challenge. "The real solution is to empower girls and women in every way possible," says Neelam Singh, head of Vatsalya, an NGO working on children's and women's issues. "We need to provide them with access to education, healthcare and opportunities which will help them make decisions for themselves and stand up to those who seek to abuse or exploit them." 

While other women compare polyandry with polygyny( having many wives at the same time) And question” when a husband can have two or three wives at the same time why not a wife can have two or three husbands at the same time. It is accepted and practised in Hindu culture as well as Islamic culture. Many Hindu gods have more than one wife. Politicians and cine stars and celebrities have them. They also question the logic of allowing Muslim men to have more than one spouse while denying the same ‘right’ to women.

Dr. Zakir Naik says polyandry is prohibited in Islam. He explains “A lot of people, including some Muslims, question let me first state emphatically, that the foundation of an Islamic society is justice and equity. Allah has created men and women as equal, but with different capabilities and different responsibilities.
Men and women are different, physiologically and psychologically. Their roles and responsibilities are different. Men and women are equal in Islam, but not identical.
Surah Nisa’ Chapter 4 verses 22 to 24 gives the list of women with who you can not marry and it is further mentions in Surah Nisa’ Chapter 4 verse 24 "Also (prohibited are) women already married"

1. If a man has more than one wife, the parents of the children born of such marriages can easily be identified. The father as well as the mother can easily be identified. In case of a woman marrying more than one husband, only the mother of the children born of such marriages will be identified and not the father
2. Man is more polygamous by nature as compared to a woman.

3. Biologically, it is easier for a man to perform his duties as a husband despite having several wives. A woman, in a similar position, having several husbands, will not find it possible to perform her duties as a wife
 Allah, in His Infinite Wisdom, has prohibited polyandry.
One distinct advantage with polyandry is population control. Husbands may be two or three but wife is only one to bear children. So the population control takes place naturally. Apart form population controls the economic and domestic burdens can be shared. The income of multiple husbands helps family to tide over financial problems. Often one female will find it very advantageous to have several males support her in childrearing, whether or not they have outside sexual interests. Whether or not we care to admit it, a lot of childrearing and household tasks tend to fall to women still, and this seems to be a comfortable combination of traditional and disruptively new problem-solving structure for a nice environment for a household. One should wait and watch whether or not Polyandry is synonymous with female empowerment. Who knows what is in store for women and men?

venkat poolabala




            







2 comments:

  1. swm in canada men out number women here i would live polyandry

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