This seat is reserved

Brothers and their sisters, this is ace journalist Munna Mobile wishing you a happy Women’s day as we round up the events surrounds the much hyped bill in parliament. Firstly I beg to know, how does one wish women today who are sad? Does Hallmark have any special cards or do you have some innovative text messages that can be forwarded. Sample this, ‘Hey, I know your husband gave you a black eye but then here’s wishing you a safe women’s day!‘. What do you tell the thousands who are leered at in bus stops, or trains? Oh I have one for women who are harassed and ill-treated at work, ‘Hey, wish you a happy women’s day and lets hope this year your boss sees your views and is not just interested in the view!‘. Now before you roll your eyes thinking this is another feminista chasing men to castrate them in public with a sickle, let me clear the air and let you know that we are purebred MCPs! Our concerns are only in our interests for else it is gonna come bite us in the back years later. For example we did this piece a few months ago on how there aren’t any single girls around these days. The point that we are trying to iterate is that days like this and others like mothers day, ramu-kaaka day and sisters-in-law day are all just hype and generate content for news channels and worthless blogs like this one. So lets cut the crap over these fodder-for-media days and just learn to respect people every single day, it is after all in our own selfish interests.  Not wanting to drive the women away and reduce the already falling readership of this blog even further, I do not wish to elucidate on the above mentioned interests!

A couple of years ago, the womens reservation bill was tabled among a lot of ruckus in parliament, and we even did a scoop on how it was a mans world. Well nothing has changed since, and we are still where were two years ago with the same fights, yelling and adjournments. This year among much fanfare the bill was supposed to be introduced and doing it on womens day ensured hours of nonsense with panelists on their post-dinner walks
news studios
being forced
post-dinner walks near news studios being forced to face the camera. What resulted was, documents being torn, pieces hurled in the well of the house, uprooting mics and even threatening the chair. While this is pretty much the expected behavior from our elected representatives, it sure has sparked off discussions from all over. There have been many concerns that the bill doesn’t have a provision for women from backward castes and minorities. Another popular issue with reserving 1/3rd the seats pushes out existing constituents who nurse their constituencies and the rotation policy doesn’t give the incumbent any incentive to work towards preserving her seat. Few argue that while reservation at the bottom rings in social change, it doesn’t quite make sense at the highest level where merit and power reign supreme. There is the point of how since 1993, the number of female sarpanchs has increased in panchayats owing to reservation, and how even today boardrooms have less female representation due to family responsibilities. One tends to argue that reserving seats would only increase family representation, with male MPs pushing forward their wives and daughters as opposed to empowering the ones who it is really intended for. Reserving tickets also may not seem to work for then they shall be given the ones that the party has no expectations from. While some parties are lobbying for caste and religion based reservation for women, we feel it will run down the same drain that caste-politics festers today.

We at DappanKoothu are with the voice that is against the bill, and we have reasons more than one. More women MPs means us poor men have to depend on cookspoor men have to depend on cooks or enter the kitchen ourselves(gasp!) because the lunch dabbas don’t miraculously find their way to office. With more women in the house, it becomes tough to hurl mics and moth expletives without being pulled aside for lack of decency. We can’t expect our colorful politicians to sit like 5th std kids with their finger-on-the-lips pose can we? Look what happened tot eh British Parliament, so quiet and boring, no majaa only, cha! It also means that the seats promised to rowdy-elements can no longer be fulfilled, and hence a huge drop in party funds and hooligans to do their handiwork. More women contestants translates to more women voters and they will have to be wooed with sarees and not cheap liquor. That means a sharp drop in liquor sales during election season and the govt exchequer stands to lose a considerable sum in excise duty. The biggest peeve will always be that this could mean more panelists like Renuka Chowdary, Jayanthi Natarajan etc on news channels, spurring prime time discussion while we wait for supper to turn cold!

Reservations however shouldn’t be only in the parliament and electoral process, afterall those aren’t the only places that lack female representation. Engineering colleges, especially mechanical and other less hep departments where anything even remotely feminine is the equivalent ofanything even remotely feminine is the equivalent of Rekha in Umrao Jaan. Spare a thought for those poor kids who after four years of workshop lab and machine drawing develop a crush on the smiling woman on the billboard adjacent to their hostel. Queues at the milk booth, railway booking counters and bus pass renewal, ought to have a 33% representation for women and it should be them but not their fathers and brothers standing in line. How else do you expect us to give them our passes for renewal, tickets for purchase and milk card to skip long lines! Ever wondered why grad kids studying abroad make a beeline to the gym? Well the answer is the rising number of women on the treadmill, where boys always give up a treadmill to a pony-tailed lass ready to jog with a gatorade in hand. We strongly advocate for a reservation quota in the gyms back home, that will increase the number of men working out and thus ensure a fitter and fresher country! There ought to be reservation for more single women in pubs, on days other than girls night out. That will ensure that the poor stags will not feel left out and try to hound others in desperation. Then comes barber shops, have you seen those places that are so hot with hair flying all over the place and only 2-3 newspapers that everyone fights for? Quota for women will ensure better hospitable conditions and will stop men from lifting their armpits for a trim!

someone once said, ‘Educate a man and u educate an individual, educate a woman and you educate a family‘….

PS: Yes, I know it’s not the regular funny stuff so how about you say something else?

(Image Courtesy: theviewspaper)