Ever since Malayalam journalist with Madhyamam newspaper, VP Rajeena raised the issue of sexual harassment at a Madarassa in a Facebook post, her Facebook account has been blocked and unblocked alternately.
Rajeena’s post on the sexual abuse inflicted on students in the Madrassa has touched a raw nerve, with several people reacting to it and voicing their opinion.
Read about her post here.
A cross-section of prominent voices have responded by sharing their candid views.
“Everyone will have a different opinion and understanding, so if you don’t agree to something you can defend it in a reasonable, decent language. That will be a healthy discussion, which is more effective and a right thing than abusive trolls. We know that Rajeena’s experience cannot be generalized, but it is a fact that happens in every place like educational institutions and even inside the family at times. Parents should be very cautious to control these crimes,” said VT Balram, MLA and Youth Congress member.
“The reactions that have been received to Rajeena’s post are symptomatic of the way how religions that are fundamentalist respond to criticism. The kind of obscene trolls in a public sphere actually reflect on the scale of followers of that particular religion. They react very badly because they are incapable of entering in to a healthy debate for the simple reason that they have the responsibility of defending the indefensible,” said BRP Bhaskar, a senior journalist and social activist.
“It is an unpleasant truth. Our culture allows us to respect other opinions. She wrote on her experience and if people think that what she wrote cannot be generalized and is factually not correct, they can counter it decently and discuss it. But abusing and threatening is a wrong reaction, especially when she raised a topic, which was very relevant. Earlier, when a few instances were reported inside the Catholic community, the Pope had accepted the fault and sought apology for the public on behalf of the priests who allegedly committed the crime. Only once we accept the fault, we will be able to correct it. This is applicable not only for religious institutions but wherever the children face a threat,” said MA Baby, CPI(M) Politbureau member.
“It is laughable and should be condemned. This is called fascism. Instead of talking about her experiences, people have been targeting her. Proponents of religion have created such a fearful atmosphere that people are not allowed to speak their minds. However, I also appreciate those people on social media who facilitated a good debate and stoop up for her,” said author Sarah Joseph.