Violence against woman by woman

K. Filip Sumi

When we speak of violence against woman, in many cases we assume the wrong doers to be men because other than men there can’t be any other, other than woman. But we know that women can also act violently against their own gender.

There was an instance where one responsible woman behaved violently against a girl student by using certain abusive words and I was told that such use of exploitive language features under Violence against woman. Such name-callings are frequent happenings and for this reason [frequent] the cases are lightly handled. This flippancy is a circuitous encouragement to the perpetrators and responsible authorities think it’s too small a problem for them to deal with.  

Our society has now begun to give more importance to woman and is trying to protect their rights and privileges. In this, the State Commission for Woman is a boon for our able Naga women. Naga women need to wake up with all desirable things happening for them. One can’t expect women’s position to rise out of nowhere and reach the top while the larger number of them is unaware of what’s going on for them - when they don’t know what their rights are. Keeping aside violence against woman by men, our women will find it difficult to march ahead with dignity when there is violence against woman by woman themselves. 

Educated Naga women should reach out to the people in rural areas especially in places where male domination is prevalent like a divine right. It’s in such corners that violence of the most condemnable kind takes place upon woman. In many cases, every judgment goes in favour of men.

It’s only when they teach these folks about the role which women can play, then, their efforts will bear fruits. They must be encouraged to speak boldly for their own rights and the fear factor of any superior people shouldn’t be the reason to compromise with the rights of women. Instead, they should be given all possible support and encouragement so that they can be strong enough to speak for their rights and discover themselves as equals. People should make the woman victims feel that they have the essential support and are prepared to fight for the right cause, be it men or women.  When suppression is clearly visible even in urban areas, then it shouldn’t be a shock if the remotest areas are not even near to think of women as equals.

However, many women should stop degrading their feminity on the streets. While some few people fight continually for the lot of women of Nagaland, there are again greater numbers of women out in the streets whiling away their time aimlessly.

We Nagas are not that poor, though not all, to the extent of forcing our women to sell themselves. State Government and various NGOs should take stringent steps to keep this profession in control. This ugly profession becomes the last resort of some pitiable women but there are many who decidedly choose this type of living. Fortunately, poverty has not yet taken its bitterest toll upon us and this should be checked early.

If the government talks about empowering women, and wants to be practical, then, it may respond to the outcomes and recommendations of various discussions held. General issues dealt by various NGOs are no less important than the issues undertaken by governments. It’s not that the government gives less attention but it could sometimes study situations from the surface and handle and frame various methods accordingly but social organizations mostly do the study from the core. When any decisions and suggestions are arrived at out of such core discussions, it’s desirable that the government and other organizations give a good thought to it.

It’s important to observe the suitability of governance in all matters but it’s also equally important to identify the problems and address the need of the hour. 

Taking women in decision making shouldn’t be limited to countable areas or matter but as long as they are capable, as long as their judgment is sound, they should be equally recognized as that of man; if again, gender equality is what the society talk about.

Women being a necessary constituent of society, they should be given considerable space in certain decision making bodies. Our society can no more ignore their contribution in fields previously excelled only by men. A sport is no more a field where only the tough and muscled genders excel. Chekrovolu Swüro has shown that through her excellent skill in archery. Every other woman may learn that with will power they can always perform.

Similarly, in the administrative field also many outstanding women are sitting at important chairs of different departments. It clearly speaks of the ability that they possess in making decisions. Many women with such abilities are being reduced to nothing at their own homes as their voices are often derecognized or are not given opportunities to rise. Society isn’t doing much to recognize their capacities; only lesser chances are made open to them; they are not fitted properly; opportunities are not sincerely created for their performance.

Woman has been largely cornered in the stream of decision making starting right inside the family. Her decision prevails mainly on the kitchen table which is dictated sometimes by their counterparts on what to cook and what not to cook. When women has been traditionally seen as performers in the kitchen then why is it now felt that we need to include women in decision making even outside the family?

Simply, because they are able and are not given enough chances to perform. Everything has its own course of change. Society should release women to stand on their own. Women should also be committed to establish their existence and the indispensable and indelible role which they can play in society.

At this time, it’s far from right to consider unpleasant or misfit when certain women emerges in the fore-front in society. Women gaining ground should no more be distasteful to the people. Meanwhile, women also leave general societal activities all to men. This reduces their exposure to community’s atmosphere and it must be attended to. They should grab all the roles that they can play.

Many think, women excelling beyond men is uncomfortable or is against the normal functioning of society. Yet, in modern society, all such thoughts should now be too embarrassing to entertain even inside our own secretive minds.

Inclusion of women in decision making is important because when males frame policies, they often turn blind to equate it with females. Gender friendly policies sometimes are the unfamiliar thoughts in the minds of decision makers. When they take decisions, they mostly think in terms of male power, forgetting the weaker power. In this process women are un-noticeably pushed into the corner. We fail to understand the sensibility and adaptability of the weaker sex to certain decisions being taken. Sometimes it becomes too harsh and rough for women to adjust with certain policies.

If the policies pertain only to men, then, it might not be a business to interfere at all. But when it comes to policies that are likely to affect women directly or indirectly, then it is absolutely necessary to give some space to women to voice their views so that it may be framed suitably to their feminity. It is only when suitability is achieved then the policies would work.

However, to notice the equality of genders gaining weight, women will also need to first treat one another equally with respect and humility. Violence of any form should be stopped immediately and mustn’t go unreported to concerned authorities so that things may not be repeated. While many men must come out of traditional cocoons, women also need to establish themselves as a necessary element in society deserving some positions. 

At a time like this, every responsible woman should think of getting support towards defending the identity of women rather than debasing each other. Women will understand women more than men. As such they should begin to understand and respect each other’s sensibility. A woman will understand as to what kind of situation can cause emotional pain to another woman. Rough treatment is an extraterrestrial dealing for this tender being from Venus. A woman may get hurt with a single word of the most impertinent kind and nothing can compensate the mental torture which she went through. It can be the cause of her declining future performance. Who will be answerable then?