Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Widows of Vrindavan – Do they have to hear this as well?

"If they (widows) are not from here then there is no need for them to come here from other states. There are many famous temples in Bengal and Bihar too, where they can stay," the 65-year-old Lok Sabha BJP MP said.

MP referred here in this statement is Hema Malini, the actress turned politician; and the city referred is the temple city - Vrindavan. For ages Vrindavan attracted widows across the geographies of Northern and Eastern India. Many are spending their life in Vrindavan on their own, but I don’t believe good number of them had any other choice. 

Anyone remember the movie ‘Water’ by Deepa Metha? Widows are ending up in Vrindavan due to our old social prejudices and stigmas associated with widowhood not because widows are so happy to spend their last days away from family and closed ones.

I think even after giving life to many strong lady characters in big screen and then becoming a politician, Hema Malini failed to understand the ground reality. These types of statements are the last one we are expecting from a politician especially a female one. She needs to understand their problems first and then try to do something to stop their exploitation rather than saying something to stigmatize them further. 

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