On October 3, students, human rights activists, muslim-dalit-adivasi-bahujan organisations from all over India are converging in Thiruvananthapuram to march for the freedom of the twenty-four-year-old Hadiya, who is under virtual house arrest in the home of her father, Mr Asokan after the shocking annulment of her marriage to her chosen partner by the Kerala HC. The march will begin from the Martyr’s Column, Palayam, at 11 AM and end at the Kerala State Government Secretariat junction. Through this we hope to draw the attention of the public to the grave dangers posed by these decisions of the judiciary and by the shameful silence and criminal inaction of the Kerala government , which claims leftist and secular credentials. We invite all to participate in this march and strengthen the hands of those who are fighting to undo this unspeakable violation of justice to an Indian citizen and the gross attack on the fundamentals of Indian democracy. We also request you to kindly change your Facebook profile pictures to Citizens for Hadiya and/or write supporting posts.
Poo’ poo’ Dilip is an effect of the discourse on the Malayalam cine actor Dilip , who is facing trial for his alleged involvement in the conspiracy behind the despicable attack on a young woman actor in Kochi in February 2017. Now, as his next bail plea (thrice refused) draws near, there seems to be a concerted effort to produce public sympathy for the jailed actor – which has produced its own discourse, much to the distaste of those who feel that the wronged actor, and not the one accused of wrong-doing, needs to be supported. Poo'(r) Poo'(r) Dilip is a direct (and feminist) translation of the funny distortion of the piece of sentimental shit going around social media on his behalf – Dilip paavamaa, eda (Dilip is a nice guy, bro). Continue reading “Poo’, poo’ Dilip and his Valiant Knights”
This is to let you know how the events presently unfolding in Dharmakshetra- kurukshetra (or at least its vicinity) are making even me, a lapsed sudrathy from Kerala, more and more creative about convincing your masters in Delhi that Hindutva fanatics in Kerala are no less worthy of kind consideration than their own home-grown fanatics. Actually, is this not the time you should be making a splash? Alas, despite your earnest efforts, these days, the Kerala police (and even your arch-enemies in Kerala, though they seem to be a bit less enthusiastic these days), take all the credit of minority-bashing and gender-criminalising. And the best you can do is go home to home telling Hindu women to cover up etc. and shout at Muslim groups doing the same, accusing them of nearly the same acts.
My ex-sudra blood boils perhaps when I notice how in the course of post-independence history, Kerala politicians in Delhi with the exception of a few of the likes of AK Gopalan, have performed mostly sudravritti especially after the 1980s even when they were in powerful posts (often clearing the shit your predecessors have made according to the instructions from above and to the extent to which they permit). Now is your chance, I think, to rise, or at least put your head above the ground. Continue reading “A letter to Kummanam-ji, but also to all Pujya/Poojya/Poo Hindutva fanatics from Kerala, in the wake of revolution in the prasad-giving practices in Haryana”
It appears that for women in India, the modern judiciary is fading and in its place, the terrifying face of Brahmanical Dandaneethi is emerging. A ten year old rape victim is denied abortion, women fleeing dowry harassment are to submit to the rule of local elders and leaders of ‘family welfare committees’, and now, in the Hadiya case, the judges declared that unmarried daughters should be under their parents according to ‘Indian tradition’.
Read more: https://thewire.in/169543/hadiya-islam-conversion-supreme-court/
In these days in which Indo-Gangetic barbarians seethe with rage against Kerala and unleash all sorts of false propaganda about the state of affairs here, I have been thinking about my own love for and quarrels with this place. My relation to it has been largely critical, as a Malayali woman born and raised here who has endured, and continue to endure, much second-rate treatment. More than anyone else, I realize, it is Malayalis who have criticized Kerala. Not surprising, then, is the fact that one of the most ardently-discussed themes in public politics here in the past decades has been the critique of the entrenched imagination of Kerala, and its exclusions. Not for nothing, too, have the struggles of marginalized people here demanded not just material gains, but the reimagining of Kerala in more expansive terms. And newer and newer groups of excluded people keep renewing it – most recently, the LGBTIQ+ people.
Our love for Kerala is a cursing, stumbling love – but love above all.
That’s why I think Anitha Thampi’s poem Mojitopaattu (The Mohito Song) ought to be our anthem. Anitha is undoubtedly one of Kerala’s most perceptive poets of the present, capable of delving into the depths of the present cultural moment and surfacing with inscrutable yet pervasive feelings and moods and weaving these into words. Our crazy love of Kerala which cannot be but critical is brilliantly caught in this poem. In it, this love comes alive as moonlight falling on this place which illuminates erratically, sways madly, and disappears without notice; this loving looks as hard and risky as a drunk’s faltering steps along a rough bylane through treacherous yet playful moonlight; this love eddies through the blood of two and a half generations and comes awake even as the whole world sleeps. Long before the Indo-Gangetic barbarians even noticed us have we felt this mad love, and it will take more than vituperative slander to kill it.
Below is my translation of Mojitopaattu – and I take Anitha’s suggestion that it a song, and a drunken one, seriously. I hope someone sets it to music and it becomes the anthem of crazy-lovers of Kerala.
Four-five sprigs fresh mint
Two spoons sugar
Juice of three limes
Vodka, two measures and a half
Hey you, swayin’-shakin’-rollin’
on night-time alley that’s runnin’
all o’er earth that’s green and shinin’
Banana-leaf-like, straight and gleamin’*
Hey sweet moonlight,
who you be,
you be man or you be woman?
Hey you, fallin’ easy-loose-y
You for real, or just a feelin’?
Hey you singin’ , spreadin’-creepin’
Who you be to sunshine beamin’?
Hey you lurchin’, fallin’, stumblin’
on each an’ ev’ry greenly leafling
Hey bright moonshine, distilled-dried blood, bluish,
two and a half generations bleedin’
Who be you?
You be me, or you be you?
*Kerala, that lies at the foot of mountains like a bright green banana leaf beside the sea.
( Anitha Thampi , ‘Mojitopattu’)
And here is the original, much more terse and controlled in its use of language, but a paattu all the same:
രണ്ടു സ്പൂൺ പഞ്ചസാര
മൂന്നു നാരങ്ങാ നീര്
ആടിയാടിപ്പോകുന്ന പൂനിലാവേ നീ
അഴിഞ്ഞഴിഞ്ഞു തൂവുന്ന പൂനിലാവേ നീ
പാടിപ്പാടിപ്പരക്കുന്ന പൂനിലാവേ നീ
പച്ചിലകൾ തോറും തപ്പിത്തടഞ്ഞു വീഴും
രണ്ടരത്തലമുറ നീലിച്ച വാറ്റുചോരപ്പൂന്തെളിനിലാവേ നീ
Guest Post by Sabiha Farhat
[ A month ago from yesterday, a teenager called Junaid was lynched and murdered on a train in Haryana. Sabiha Farhat writes in the wake of visiting his house and meeting his family. The news cycles may have moved on to other stories, but we need to keep remembering Junaid, and why he was killed. – Kafila]
Once upon a time there was a 15 year old boy called Hamid, who went shopping on the day of Eid with his Eidi . A few days ago there was Junaid who went shopping on the eve of Eid. Premchand’s Hamid was an orphan and lived with his grandmother in extreme poverty. Junaid lived surrounded with love of his brothers, a sister, a doting mother, father and friends. Instead of the old, decrepit house of Hamid, Junaid’s house has two rooms, it is not falling apart but it’s size and unplastered walls, do speak about the economic condition of his family.
As we approached Khandawli, Junaid’s village in Ballabhgarh a fear gripped me. I did not have the courage to walk upto the house. Junaid was brutally murdered on 22nd and here I was on 25th. It was too soon, my mind said. I should have let Eid pass. But how could I have prepared Sewai in my house when a mother like myself had lost a young, healthy, happy child to hindutva fanatics? I am a mother, I was angry and ashamed at home. And here, standing outside Junaid’s door, I was weak and helpless. Useless too.
This is a guest post by SURABHI SHUKLA
Playing for the Oxford University Women’s team and the Oxford Cricket Club, I have noticed three different rules for women’s cricket. These may be observed in other countries as well. I argue that these rules are based only on gender stereotypes about women’s inferior sporting abilities and even if were once instituted to encourage them to join the game, have now outlived their utility. 1. The women’s match ball is lighter than the men’s ball (also true at the international level). 2. The women’s match boundary is smaller than the men’s and; 3. One of my coaches here told me that the men’s bat is different from the women’s. This is incorrect, and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) website states that both men and women are entitled to use Type A bats for one-day internationals. However, I include this point in my analysis because regardless of a rule, these kinds of statements from a coach translate into the lived experience of a female cricketer, and act as a rule for them. Continue reading “Women’s Cricket – Rules Based Only on Gender Stereotypes Need to Go: Surabhi Shukla”