Need for application of ‘Raksha Bandhan’
Intro: Raksha Bandhan spirit is sure to destroy the evil desires in the minds of youths who inflict sexual onslaught on women. This movement should be made as powerful as the Freedom Movement.
Sexual onslaught on women which is going on in almost all parts of the country and almost every day has created an atmosphere of terror for all law abiding citizens and in particular to women and a great insult to our national life. There is immediate necessity to put an end to it and ensure safety for our mothers and sisters and to remove the black spot on our otherwise ideal cultural national life. For this purpose, there is chorus by the people that severe punishments should be inflicted on the culprits so that such criminal acts may come down on account of fear of punishment. This is only partly true.
The experience shows that a man can be human or demon. When evil desire over takes a man, he is neither afraid of being punished, condemned in the society nor a sense of shame which prevents him from indulging in such heinous crimes as indicated in the popular Samskrit saying Kamaturanam Na Bhayam Na Lajja. They don’t even think as to what would happen to them and their family when their own mother or sister becomes a victims of sexual onslaught. Even in cases where the persons who have inflicted sexual injury on women are caught and heavy punishment is imposed on them that constitutes no remedy to the victim for the damage caused to a women consequent on sexual onslaught on her is irreparable. Once such injury is inflicted on a woman, she loses peace of mind and has to suffer the pain of injury caused by sexual onslaught till her death and even thereafter by her family members. It is for this reason, sexual intercourse by a man with a woman who is not his wife is regarded as the most heinous and there is no offence more heinous than that.
“There is no offence which is more heinous and condemnable than having sexual intercourse with a woman who is not his wife.” [Manu Smriti 4-134]
Such injury may be inflicted on account of provocation or on account of anger or instigation by any other person. It can also be done by people having sick mind. It is for this reason, the aforesaid Samskrit verse declares that no offence is more heinous than committing sexual offence against women. By such offence, the woman who is the victim has no remedy and has to suffer until death comes to her. Therefore, in respect of sexual offence which may be committed by a man against a woman, the only remedy is prevention as there is the famous statement “Prevention is better than cure”.
Then the question is how to protect or prevent a person from committing such an offence. This is possible by providing/ acquiring samskar which destroys the evil thought whenever comes in the mind, for whatever be the reason. The two lined Samskrit shloka in the book Swami Vivekananda on Himself can be regarded as the panacea for all human problems. It reads:-
“A person who treats every woman other than his wife as equal to his own mother, regards wealth or money belonging to another person as equal to loaf of mud, regards all living beings as his own atma, can be regarded as really educated person.”
To illustrate, ones the cultural value that every woman is equal to one’s own mother is ingrained in the heart of individuals, the mind no longer acts as instigator or as catalyst forcing the individual to make sexual onslaught on woman. Therefore, providing such samskar should be made part and parcel of national education. The meaning of samskar is given in Kamandaka Neetisara as follows:-
“Samskar is that process undergoing which a person or thing becomes fit for the purpose for which he or it is meant”.
Therefore, providing samskar is the only remedy against sexual onslaught on women. Unfortunately, this type of moral education and training is totally absent in our school and college curriculum. That is why it is said that there is a basic difference between the Law and Dharma. Law comes into operation after the offence is committed by an individual whereas ‘Dharma’ destroys sinful thoughts and prevents an individual from committing such an offence. This aspect is clearly declared in Mahanarayanopanishad, thus:
Dharma constitutes the foundation of all affairs in the world. People respect those who adhere to Dharma. Dharma destroys sinful thoughts. Everything in this world is founded on Dharma. Dharma therefore, is considered supreme.
The role of Dharma is, that it acts as an internal check, a preventive against sinful actions as it destroys the very cause of such actions, namely sinful thoughts. This should be ingrained in the heart and mind of every individual through process of samskar.
To put it in a nutshell, the power of law is to punish those who commit offences after they commit the offence, if only they are caught and evidence is available. It is punitive in nature. But “Dharma” has the power to prevent a man from committing an offence by acting as an antigen against the six enemies inherent in every man. It is preventive. Therefore, it can rightly be described as the six antigen for the mind which gives immunity against sinful thoughts arising on account of the instigation of one or more of the six inherent enemies (arishadwarga). Therefore, the topic of providing such samskar to every one should become the part and parcel of good education system.
Apart from providing such samskara through education, different methods of providing good samskar have been developed in Bharatiya way of life. One such is Raksha Bandhan festival, which is being celebrated from times immemorial.Through this festival brothers take pledge to protect their sisters. This duty or obligation to give protection to a woman throughout her life is laid on men. This is the excellent arrangement of social security and protection.
Having realised the great benefit of celebrating Raksha Bandhan it is being celebrated as a national festival as a symbol of mutual love and protection. This is the most powerful antidote against the evil desire of males to indulge in sexual onslaught on women.
It is unfortunate that on account of western way of life where greater importance is given to sexual enjoyment, is liberally followed in our cinematography, films, commercial advertisements etc., the combined effect of all these constitute instigation or provocation to youths for committing sexual onslaught on women.
But who cares. Making money illegally and improper means and by exhibiting provocative pictures of sexual enjoyments have become rampant which is the cause for so many rapes going on every day which is threatening our social, cultural and national life.
As a remedy to this situation, ‘Raksha Bandhan Movement’ to celebrate Raksha Bandhan as a national festival which has been the symbol of mutual love and protection among the citizens is being organised by the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan and Bharat Vikas Parishad as a social remedy. Raksha Bandhan spirit is sure to destroy the evil desires in the minds of youths who inflict sexual onslaught on women. This movement should be made as powerful as the Freedom Movement which alone constitutes a preventive remedy as distinct from imposing punishment after such irreparable injury is inflicted on women.
-Justice ( Retd.) M Rama Jois (The writer is former Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court)