Friday, February 7, 2014

Help! Ex-Devadasis

    Imagine yourself being a slave in a free country, sounds scary, isn't it? Now imagine not just being a slave but a forced sex slave from the age of 5 or 6. Imagine when due to wrong practices and misleading myths you have been forced to become a sex slave under the title of temple prostitute. Imagine taking the name of god and doing worst possible things, not allowing a person to live freely, forcing her to become a sex-worker just for some money and our corrupted practices of past. I was literally in tears and my heart is grieved to see the video.1

The Problem:    You must be thinking its past which I talk about, or mystic land where this practices take place but don't be surprise its in India(Kappalguddi, Karnataka, India) and still this practice is going on. Yes the tradition where this women are called Devadasi,2 (meaning: ‘servant of God’) system involved dedicating a girl, as young as 5-6 years of age, to the temple Goddess. This meant that she would spend her entire life serving the temple and was not allowed to marry anyone else. The system was abused by the rich and the powerful who began to force the young Devadasis to sleep with them.Over the years, the Devadasis were reduced to being incorrectly termed 'temple prostitutes'. This merciless practice, though illegal and outlawed, still exists in certain small towns of India and its stigma continues to cling to the women who attempt an escape. Because of the social stigma around their roles, employment opportunities are denied to them. It is a vicious cycle where future generations too, are drawn into this ruthless system3. I am sure many of us are not even aware of such practices and even though its illegal its still going on, you want to know why?
    Logic is simple, do you remember the old hindi line which says “Kalank kajal se kali”  (blemish is more blank than collyrium) which indicates or really means that once you are blemish in the society you cannot walk with dignity. Imagine everyone calling you names “whore” ,“slut”, “prostitute” and they even don't know they didn't chose to be their and they didn't want to be there but we leave no option for them. Either they die or they choose to remain in the same trade. They don't want to beg. We all dislike beggars and we always complain, “why can't they work?” They can't work because no one in the society want to give work to them. Remember old slave story of America when the law was passed and slavery was illegal, now suddenly there was freedom and they didn't knew what to do and how to do? So many of them continued to serve their master’s willingly.But few who fought and struggled hard to make their position in the society. So its not very different story here, there are group of women who are no longer Devadasis but they are struggling with the society, with the financial struggle to support them and their family, their many objective now remains to stop and abolish this practice and give a better future to the next generation. They are like helpless birds trapped in a prison. Even animal right activist don't allow to treat animals like the way human are treated by our society.

Change:    But what if I want to say there are few changes, what if I say the birds inside the cage are restless to come out now, what if I say they want to live in dignity they want to spread awareness that same should not be repeated with someone else. What it they are courageous enough to take a stand, will you stand beside them. What if I say they just need ordinary people like you and me to help them. What if I say with a small help they can become independent.As they don't get jobs and ill-treated by the rich, many of them want to become self-employed and want to work with their own hands also teach others and help other who are still in the same trade and want to bring the change in society.They want to become enterpreneur and they are not only thinking about themselves but for other similar women who are trapped in viscous cycle they need a small help to break through. They want the same dignity as we have. They are also fellow humans like us, they also want to live an independent and a happy life. They are eager to help others because who else will know the pain better than them, they have experienced it for years. They know the pain and they want to change it. All the need a chance. We all make mistakes and look for a chance to change but here they made no mistakes but they are asking for a chance for the mistake we made. For justice to be done with them they are eager to change this. Will you help them?

Act/Help:     Lets be practical now. What can we do? The need is certainly vast. But what if I say lets help people and group one at a time.Lets take small steps to begin with. And as I said they want to start new business they need help financially, now you will think they are asking for donation and we don't have money to donate because we have so many things to do and we earn very less but its not donation but its lending money. Yes, you can give loan to the group of people who want to start a new business on their own and after certain period of time you will get back your money which you can pay it forward. And guess what its like you don't have to give a large chunk of money but you can begin as small as Rs.500(what a cost of two movie tickets/ a good dinner at your favorite restaurant). Trust me if we share our resources in right way and it reaches the right person who is impacting others, this world will become better place to stay. Think your help will change and touch so many lives. There will be so many employment opportunity because of this help. You will be helping group of people to get back their dignity, to get back their life at their terms freely and they can live like us. And they will be really thankful for your help and I am sure they will be encouraged to help others. And your kindness will reach miles and miles away.
There are plenty of reasons why you should give, if you want to refresh you memory and looking for reasons read this.4

For donation lending money join me on: You can make payments using your Credit/Debit cards, Netbanking.

Disclaimer: All images are copied from the Internet via Google Images


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