Friday, September 13, 2013

I am a savage, you have a problem?

Death sentence is a mark of barbaric society, say some thinkers. Yes, true. But, we live in a barbaric society. We live in a society where six men not only rape a woman but also brutally maim her internal organs! We live in a society where women think twice before stepping out in the dark in lonely streets, lonely buses, lonely shops, watching their backs forever. We live in a society where even young children of five and below are not spared.

Will death sentence really deter the perpetrators of such crimes, you ask. Right. When the woman was helplessly screaming, were her thoughts about how to reform these men? Do you think such men can be reformed?

When the judge tries the case of Nirbhaya's rape, his duty is to first deal with that. And anything less than death would be unfair for it is not only rape but attempted murder too.

Take the case of the serial rapist in Karnataka who managed to escape from jail despite conviction. he was caught, fine. But may not have been too. Do we want that to happen again with these four men - I wish it were five, for the fifth's age makes no impression on me and the courts have proved they are 'civilised' enough by treating him as a juvenile despite the severity of his crime.

We need reforms. We need to strengthen the legal system. We need to ensure safety for women. We need to teach men to respect women from the time they are young. But all this will take a generation to implement, and that too, only if we continue to remain sincere and diligent.

The ones who are already hardened with time need to know that justice will be swift and merciless. The women need to know that they can go to court and they will not be held responsible for what happens to them. They will need to know that they can shout from the rooftops that they have been violated without being blamed for it.

And that the men will not go scotfree.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

A New Cap to Don

My forays into teaching dance have been entirely due to others' efforts. A neighbour wants her daughter to learn; another is my mother's friend and looking for a teacher; a third - here for a short while... Nothing serious, no long commitments. My own work commitments prevented me from considering teaching seriously - I didn't think I would be able to train others for the long term.

Then, a few years ago, a few of my friends and neighbours requested me again. They overcame my resistance saying - Do it it till you can, share what you will.

A few more joined, but I have kept it to bare minimum due to paucity of time and space. Better to train a few well than spread myself thin.

Then suddenly, another opening, again, not for long term, but more formal. An honour to be part of this. Vazhuvoor style of dance is one of the leading forms, with several famous dancers including Vyjayanthimala Bali, Dr. Padma Subramaniam, Kumari Kamala and her sister and my Guru Rhadha coming from this background. All trained under the legendary, Vazhuvoor Ramaiah Pillai.

Now, Vazhuvoor Ramaiah Pillai's grandchildren are starting a dance school to further his legacy, and my guru deemed it fit to recommend my name along with another of her student's to train the students. Check out: About us page even has a brief bio
about me!

Keep your doors and windows open. You never know when opportunity will take you by surprise.

And, if you know anyone seeking to learn dance, you are welcome. Classes will be held on weekends, in the mornings.
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