Delhi government has announced that it will administer an oath to male students at all schools to behave well with girls and not indulge in crimes against women. Chief Minister of the state Arvind Kejriwal made this announcement at a women’s meet, further adding that mothers and sisters need to talk to boys that they will not accept them at home if they do wrong to women, reports News 18. So, ladies and girls of Delhi feel assured about your safety, because “kasam” seems to have achieved a breakthrough where harsh legal action and sensibility couldn’t. Also dear parents, why bother conditioning your son to be a better person who respects women when you can deter him from misbehaving with simply an oath.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Delhi Government will soon make boys undertake oath to behave well with girls.
  • CM Arvind Kejriwal has urged mothers to talk to their sons and tell them that they won’t be accepted in the home if they do any wrong to women.
  • Must a boy behave well with a girl because that is the right thing to do, or just because he is bound by an oath?
  • In a society where adults have no qualms going back on their word, isn’t it naive to expect boys to abide by oaths?

Why bother conditioning your son to be a better person who respects women, when you can deter him from misbehaving with simply an oath.

Kejriwal’s solution to deal with the epidemic of sexual crimes, which seems to have been inspired by eighties Bollywood films, would have indeed worked, had we been a society where words were indeed set in stone. Where oaths were upheld to preserve honour and self-respect. But alas we do not live in that sort of world anymore. When adults show no qualms in going back on their word, how can we expect young school going kids to take oaths seriously? Also, must a person not violate someone’s consent because they are bound by oath, or because that is the right or humane thing to do?

Also Read: Has India Forgotten To See Rape As A Crime Unless It Is Violent?

Also, Kejriwal’s plea to mothers and sisters to not accept their boys at home if they misbehave with women is problematic on so many levels. Is parenting singularly a mother’s responsibility? Must a mother and sister feel accountable for the actions of her son or brother? Doesn’t this yet again put the burden of responsibility on women, when it comes to sexual safety? Isn’t telling women to talk their boys into respecting women akin to holding mothers accountable for their sons’ uncouth behaviour?

It is indeed heartening that Delhi government has taken the slogan of raise your boys right to the heart. but the solution it proposes seems to pander more to sentiments than empathy.

India is yet to realise that bringing up boys and girls is a social responsibility as well. Just a few days ago, I wrote a tweet that went along the lines of “raise your boys right”, to which a user responded, “no mother raises her son to be a rapist”. This response shows how we simply assume that any comment or suggestion in reference to the upbringing of a child is directed to a mother. Why? Aren’t we as a society responsible for the children around us? Must we not keep an eye out for any child who looks scared or in need of help? Must we not take initiatives that ensure that juveniles don’t fall into ill company?

It is indeed heartening that Delhi government has taken the slogan of “raise your boys right” to the heart. It understands that there is a lot that can be done outside of a house, to ensure that men and boys do not turn to committing sexual crimes. However, the solution it proposes feels to feed on sentimentality and not empathy and rational. However, such are the times that we can pursue any and every measure to make this country safe for the womankind. Who knows, maybe sentiments will win the battle that morality has lost.

(Do let us know what you think of this decision by the Delhi government in the comments section.)

Image Credit:  VK Singh and Company

Also Read: Rape Culture: A Complex Problem That Mere Death Penalty Can’t Solve

Yamini Pustake Bhalerao is a writer with the SheThePeople team, in the Opinions section. The views expressed are the author’s own.

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