Working towards dignity and a full stomach

Dance bars in mumbai have been granted a lease of life. Those girls can now earn.
Some people argue that dance bars are the reason that wives cry at home ‘waiting for their husbands’, that young boys get polluted, that the morals of our ‘tradition’ are getting eroded. I think that’s just such a load of crap!

As long as people, men and women, can earn without causing harm to another person, their trade, whatever it might be, should be deemed legal and acceptable.

Don’t know how many of you have been to Sonagahchi, the Sex Work district of Calcutta. There are about 500,000 sex workers there…give or take some. They are battling to get dignity for their ‘labor’. Till sex work is legalized, they say, they cannot be deemed ‘workers’ – they cannot even get basic services like opening a bank account, getting a ration card, getting a voter id, getting chier children admission to schools, etc…stuff that any regular moron on the street, who supposedly does not trade sex for money, can. They want to knwo whether they share this country with us, as equal citizens.

The current debate about making clients of sex workers deemed as ‘criminals’ adds chaos to the already hungry terrain that a sex worker walks. The Indian govt says its doing this coz that way it can stop trafficking of women and children! Blah! Is the moral sanity of people overtaken by large doses of a profane and exploitative mindset…that is the question of this fuming debate.

Meanwhile, poor women who have not recourse will continue to sell sex or whatever they have to keep alive. Question is, will we ever be able to allow them the basic dignity of a ‘worker’….


Blogger Voice said...

hi mona
thnx for commenting in my blog. aap jaldi wapas aiye hume apka intezaar rahega. check my regular blog
just out of curiosity...how u stumbled to my blog?

nice article. i totally reckon your view point. but the thing is most people are not morally that strong to resist the temptation. only law can force them to stay at home. beside this in most of the cases it is necessity but in some cases easy money. but still i back ur point
"As long as people, men and women, can earn without causing harm to another person, their trade, whatever it might be, should be deemed legal and acceptable. "

long comment... but i was feeling like writing a whole blog on this topic.

9:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

welcome back!...where you been hibernating??

9:10 AM  
Blogger samiranghosh said...

Hi Mona,

I suppose your diction "As long as people, men and women, can earn without causing harm to another person, their trade, whatever it might be, should be deemed legal and acceptable" must be universal. Wish we lived in Utopian world. Every story has got two sides and the merit of discussion of the effectiveness of Dans Bar needs a thorough understanding. Mona, I do agree with you on certain counts moreover i had read somewhere that each Dans Bar bribes its local police station with an amount of Rs 2 Lakhs. Calcualting all the legal and illegal dance bars operating in and around Mumbai, the sum on a annualized basis becomes Rs 190 crores, whic matches about 1/3 of the official mumbai police payroll. Economic rational juustified may be, but your post touches on the social message as well.
I've a simple understanding, whenever there is a demand there ought to be a supply. Ask mid 20 generation crowd what they need - Roti, Kapra, Makan and Sex. Its time we come out of such a prehistoric taboo and understand thats natural rather being sexually frustrated.

Nice read and sorry for my long comment.


11:10 PM  
Blogger anjali* said...

Can't agree with you more, Mona. All the best! :)

6:29 AM  
Blogger Curious said...

This society is full of double standards Mona..thats all i have to say!
..and only people who have had a chance to get a real peek into the lives of these workers can actually see some sense in your post..all the rest will sadly be just a lip-service...Being a theatre student i once had to enact a story of a hijda sex worker, i was really shocked and even mad at my teacher for having even suggested me this topic but once i finished my research...I saw more than what met my eyes.

11:11 AM  
Blogger Ajit Chouhan said...

Hi Mona,

Thanks for the comments on my blog.U've got some very sensitive stuff on your blog here.Even I'm very passionate about people's cause.

Nice to know u r from jampot...Has a very special liking for the city ,cause of the XLRI connection.
Do let me know more about yourself.

You are invited to join the coolbihari group.It's not just about bihar but about social and economic issues of not so developed parts of the country.It's an endeavour to give back something to the land where we belong to,and create a better future for our state and our coming generations.

7:17 PM  
Blogger Pankaj said...

Hi Mona, thanks for stopping by on my blog. Will go through yours in detail soon.


6:38 AM  
Blogger srikanth said...

Hey, thought provoking topic, this. As are the others, i see that from the titles.

My thought, if a particular "profesional" and the "profesion" is not recognised, then, the user should also not be recognised.

So, if a sex worker cannot be granted bank accounts or ration cards by our sacred constitution, the same should be the treatment to the customers of this lady.

A not-so-positive approach, i admit, but then a few thorns are removed by thorns alone. :)

Pls keep cooking such "food-for-thought" articles. :)

5:45 PM  
Blogger Mukul said...

mona mona mona,

i didn't know you had posted a comment on my blog as for some reason it never got to me until i opened up blogger for some maintainence - it was sitting there among un-approved meassages which did not reach my mailbox due to some mysterious failure. send me your e-mail i.d. and phone number.. will catch up aaram se.

7:32 PM  
Blogger soumya said...

what all u have said is valid... more so becoz of inherent weaknesses in human nature... and society therafter... still i dont think if i will ever stop supporting those who want to eradicate such work... to me it is worst means of exploitation... worst use of human body... i dont think any such worker enjoys her work... so they need to be given a better alternative for living...

anyways, its good to be on ur blog... will keep coming... and since u r raising such issues so please have patience while listening to others if u want to arrive at truth...

8:01 PM  
Blogger Laghu Sikarwar said...

a good post...i stumbled on to your post from a friends blog...

I wud say that the point u raised is a very valid one...but i'd add that everything has two sides good n bad..

A lot of women take up prostitution for livelihood...while there might be a lot of women who are pushed n r forced to do it...

a gr8 read.. ur post

7:12 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Mona

Met u in the TAHA Partners meet and it was a great experience seeing the way u broke all the inhibitions that inhibit one from being being more effective.

I am K. Kim

10:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many?

10:32 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home