Dr Mahesh Sharma, Minister of State of Culture & Tourism advised the foreign nationals to refrain from wearing skirts, and now he is facing the wrath. I have lived in cities like Allahabad, Benaras, Lucknow, and Bariely, and never have I seen a lady on the street in a skirt. WELCOME TO REALITY!
Coming back to the point, I must share an incident with you all to make you understand what exactly our minister wished to communicate.
One of my colleagues who’s quite fashionable and is mostly punching in at work in a short skirt had been dressing up quite differently from her usual style, since past two weeks. Out of curiosity, I asked her, “What the matter? I have never seen you coming in sarees and suits. Have you broken up with western style?” She laughed and said, “No, that ain’t ever happening. Actually, my mother in law is in town to stay with us. So my husband has requested me to wear a Saree till she’s here.”
Do you see? Period!
Educating and informing the foreign nationals is a viable move. I have a friend who recently visited Jerusalem. When she went to visit Temple mount, she was wearing short sleeves T-shirt and was denied an entrance by the authorities, and was only allowed to enter the premises when she covered her arms with a scarf. She told me that even long pants are frowned upon and only long skirts are allowed.
See, we are not Jerusalem, Pakistan or Afghanistan, we are better than them, but still we aren’t the best. Indian social fabric is highly patriarchal which has left women significantly exploited and discriminated. The discrimination against women operates both in and out of homes. Not only men always get preference in every walk of life, but their attitude towards women is also largely patronising and imposing. Their weak status, particularly in the rural areas, is at the root of most chronic problems. Definitely, things are changing, but at snail’s pace!
The one’s trolling Mr Mahesh Sharma won’t be accountable in case a mishappening occurs to any of the tourists. They won’t walk out of Twitter or Facebook; they will just remain where they are and will only tweet.
Mahesh Sharma Ji, your honest statement appropriately highlights your concern! Just Chill.