Trust our moral police to make mountains out of molehills and ignore real issues

By | November 14, 2017

We’re a nation of 1.324 billion and rising. And we stay incorrigibly squeamish about intercourse. Or fairly intercourse that occurs exterior the confines of the ordained marital mattress and ideally in missionary place.

So it’s with the newest intercourse CD scandal. Even that phrase ‘intercourse CD’ sounds so antiquated in a time of Ragini MMS.

Hardik Patel, the enfant horrible of Gujarat politics is the newest to be embroiled in a ‘intercourse scandal’. A video allegedly that includes him with a girl has gone viral on social media. “Soiled politics has began now,” Patel tweeted. He mentioned the BJP has “ready a doctored intercourse CD to defame (him)”. The BJP has denied it has something to do with the video. Union minister Mansukh Mandaviya has mentioned Patel ought to have filed a criticism as a substitute of complaining in regards to the BJP. In the meantime social media is tittering in regards to the ‘actual face of pervert Hardik Patel’.

Whether or not or not the video is morphed, what’s the perversion right here? That Hardik had intercourse? In a lodge? With a girl to whom he’s not married?

File image of Hardik Patel. AFP

File picture of Hardik Patel. AFP

This isn’t a case like Republican Senate candidate in Alabama, Roy Moore, being accused of selecting up and molesting teenaged ladies — one thing patently unlawful. Ashwin Patel, a former cohort of Hardik’s and now estranged from his motion, has alleged Hardik exploited a number of ladies. However there’s no proof that the actual girl within the video is being exploited.

Or is premarital or extramarital intercourse de facto exploitation based on our ethical police? Now we have hospitals operating out of oxygen in Gorakhpur. Now we have cow vigilantes operating amuck and the Rajasthan authorities saying it can’t forestall each scenario in all places. Now we have United Airways cancelling flights to New Delhi as a result of the air pollution is off the charts. Now we have the Gurugram Police being accused of framing the closest poor bus conductor they might discover after a younger pupil was killed.

And we expect that Hardik’s intercourse life is a scandal?

This isn’t new. Our squeamishness goes means again. In 1978, Jagjivan Ram famously noticed his prime ministerial ambitions implode when Surya, edited by Maneka Gandhi, revealed revealing photos of his son Suresh in what we coyly name ‘compromising positions’ with a girl.

The issue is threefold. One is the pious hypocrisy of political leaders who need to faux that their private lives are as starched as their khaadi caps. That is some unusual lovechild of Gandhian notions of abstinence and Victorian prudishness. Thus we virtually see an ethical equivalence between Congress chief Abhishek Manu Singhvi being caught having intercourse with a lawyer in his book-lined research and BJP chief Bangaru Laxman being caught in a sting operation accepting wads of cash from Tehelka reporters pretending to be arms sellers. Singhvi’s exertions won’t be aesthetic however it isn’t even the identical as politicians being caught watching porn whereas within the Meeting. Nonetheless Singhvi, nonetheless resigned as chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Regulation and Justice. In Bengal, ministers caught in a Narada sting apparently accepting bribes all stay in workplace. The get together has mentioned the cash got here from donations, not bribes. It suggests being caught together with your pants down could be politically extra harmful than being caught red-handed taking bribes. That needs to be the true scandal.

Second is our fuzzy notion of consent. We simply don’t get the concept that intercourse between consenting adults is no one’s enterprise however their very own. On one hand, we romanticise stalking in our movies however on the opposite, we’re aghast that two consenting adults might need intercourse in a lodge room. Even an extramarital affair is basically not the enterprise of anybody aside from the events concerned: The pati, patni and woh. When Madhya Pradesh finance minister Raghavji Lakhamsi Savala was accused of sexually abusing a home assist utilizing the lure of a job, all hell broke free. When a CD surfaced, Savala resigned. However the headlines like “MP minister Raghavji quits as servant accuses him of sodomy” solely missed the purpose. The scandal was not whether or not there was sodomy. The actual query was whether or not it was consensual or not.

Third is our scandalised give attention to the sexual act itself. In the course of the #AAPKaSexScandal Arvind Kejriwal sacked cupboard minister Sandeep Kumar caught in mattress with a girl who was not his spouse. But it surely was unclear whether or not Kerjiwal was sacking him due to a rape cost that got here later or due to adultery. All he tweeted initially was, “Rec’d ‘objectionable’ CD of minister Sandeep Kr. AAP stands for propriety in public life. That may’t be compromised.” Kejriwal had already sacked two different ministers. Jitender Tomar had been accused of fraud. Asim Ahmed Khan had been accused of taking a bribe. These should not the identical as Kumar having intercourse exterior marriage if that’s the lapse in propriety that upset Kejriwal so.

Hardik has mentioned,”I’m a person, I’m not impotent.” He’s proper about that. His intercourse life may upset his household however he’s not a Jain monk sworn to celibacy.

There’s no hypocrisy there, no proof of dissonance between his public requirements and personal life. Even the antiquated and ridiculous Part 377 of the Indian Penal Code appears to not have been violated.

That we’d fairly debate the morality of his intercourse life as a substitute of the morality of a quota demand for his Patidar group exposes our personal prurience. As Gujarati politician Jignesh Mevani rightly mentioned, “Proper to intercourse is a basic proper. Nobody has the precise to breach your privateness.”

Hardik has mentioned, “I’m not bothered, however Gujarat’s ladies are being insulted” by what he calls ‘soiled politics’. The intercourse is just not soiled per se however our voyeurism definitely is. Subsequent time, can we ask if that intercourse was a criminal offense, a battle of curiosity or an abuse of energy earlier than we rush to name it a scandal?

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