Tradition…. honour…Killings….

 

Every family, every society, every community, every business thrives on its culture and traditions. Traditions qualifies any society and served as a tool over ages to bind the people/ company together. People lived and gave their life for the honour of traditions. Like every rule of law, every tradition needs to change to keep pace with the growth in society. Any business or society which refused to adapt to change either died a natural death or stagnated at best. 

Cases of killing for family honour are not very uncommon in our society. Perceived violation of family tradition/ culture or bringing shame or bad name to the family by going against the societal norms have many a times resulted in violent cold-blooded murders. Entire families have been declared as an outcast for defying norms of the community.

Day before, I was really disturbed to read that a father killed his teen daughter because he found her talking on cell phone, to someone he perceived to be her boyfriend, at midnight. That was reason enough for him to lose his cool and strangulate her to death. I am sure he would have certainly cautioned her at least couple of times before the incident but is such an action justified under any law. Is falling in love a crime, specially, for women? Does an inter caste marriage or love affair warrants punishment by death and that too generally of the girl? Yes, there have been instances boys being killed too, but, by the parents of the girl because she refused to leave him. Somehow the onus of carrying the family traditions lies more on the ladies/ girls than on the man. A man may get away with gross violations. There have hardly been any cases of boys being killed by families for perceived violation of family tradition/ causing dis-respect to the community whereas instances of girls being sacrificed are numerous. 

Man, the bread winner of the family is allowed liberty to go against the tradition whereas a lady, traditionally the homemaker, child bearer and caretaker is bound by strict traditions. Even in the so called affluent society the women do not enjoy the freedom as the folk do. 

The only way the change can be brought in is by means of education. Parents, specially mothers, have to ensure that the girls are educated and empowered to stand on their feet. They have to ensure the right values are instilled in the boys. The boys have to be taught to respect the girls and treat them as equals. A girl may be physically weaker but she can’t be treated as second class citizen in her own home, as compared to the boys. Rule of the land has to be strictly enforced, by the civil administration, with exemplary punishments being given in cases of honour killings. Enough government schemes exist for educating the girl child, what is lacking is the implementation in true spirit. “Mental blocks have to be removed, the thought process has to change and this can only be brought about by education”. 

“Allow your girls to grow…let them live their dream….they will only make you proud….trust them”