Ramesh and Ramala is a happy couple. Both are engineers by profession and work in a reputed organization. They have a small kid, named Rupam, who is just six years of age and a student of a reputed convent school. They live in a luxurious flat in a posh are of the city, having car and all amenities, which eloquently express, how financially sound they are. Truly, they are enjoying a small family with a sweet home, which all middle class family aspires for.
From the early morning their routine hectic schedule starts. Sometimes, as per the demand of their jobs, they have to stay for longer hours in their place of work. Yet, no grudge they have, as they can comfortably manipulate their lives with the available circumstances.
Bimala, the domestic help of their house, who used to take lot of responsibilities in order to ensure smooth sailing of their life. She is about thirty years of age and from a family of rural background and obviously economically backward class. She lost her husband at her early years of marriage. As nobody of her family wants to bear the financial burden of her, she has no choice apart from working to meet her both end.
However, in Raman’s family, she accommodated herself in such a fashion, that she became almost an integral part of Ramen’s family. Right from dawn to dusk, she used to take lot of workload, preparing food, looking after their son, sending him to school and bringing him back, and rest all other household activities she happily perform, making herself inevitable to them. She equally considered herself as a part and parcel of Raman’s family.
Ramala, Ramen’s wife is also from well to do family. She, being the only daughter of her parent, groomed with all amenities and being indiscriminately treated with male fraternity, facilitated with substantial scope to grow with vigor, resulting her to gain higher intellectual frequency, and virtually curve a niche in the modern developed world, where gender disparity is less and women are working with adequate competence and proving their mettle with regard to their male counterpart. Making the scenario discerning to the world that equality of gender is how far prolific to the available society. Precisely, when a woman become educated and economically empowered, there prevails a gender balance in the society, reducing the atrocities against women. The vulnerability become less in terms of women’s status in the society as presumed and they equally enjoy a healthy life, helping to promote a healthy social and economic milieu.
However, Ramen and Ramala’s life is floating smoothly, where they manifest a perfect picture of a happy couple.
One day, Ramala was compelled to visit her father’s house owing to his ailment, which is located in a distant place and Ramala took her son with her as he is having his summer vacation. She repeatedly instructed Bimala before living the house to take necessary care of Ramen along with the responsibility of other works of her house. Bimala equally remain busy in discharging her usual duties necessary for the household chores and everything was going on in due momentum.
Nesxt day, after the departure of Ramala, Ramen returned to the house little late in an inebriated state. Boozing has nowadays become a fashion of people, and Bimala was no longer surprised to see Ramen in that state, as sometimes they used to drink in the house too. Ramen, after entering to the house, took shower and went to his room. Little later he asked Bimala to serve food. Bimala according served him the dinner. Afterwards, Ramen asked Bimala to come to his room and sit beside him as he was feeling lonely and wanted to talk with her. Bimala did not mind to Ramen’s request as she is working in their house for a considerable time and never noticed any infamous activities of Ramen. But, little later, Ramen strated to ingratiate with her physically and despite Bimala’s resistance, Ramen forcedly compel her to have physical proximity with him. Bimala was initially literally perplexed by Ramen’s behavior, but instead of her resistance, Ramen satiate his desire, made Bimala utterly nonplussed.
Bimala was so much mentally upset and perplexed with the anomalous behavior of Ramen, that she could not believe what has happened to her, and the place where she is working for number of years with so much dedication, passion and happiness, considering the place as a safe haven for her, the ambiance which is providing so much peace and comfort with safety, inducing her to deliver her best, suddenly could turn into a hostile one, snatching her peace and sanctity perpetually! She never envisaged that a sinister laying in the place which she considered as the most safe and secured. That very might appeared as the most traumatizing night of her life.
Next morning, she shared her dreadful experience with the other domestic helps, who are working in other flats of the apartment. Hearing her plight, all other people, who empathize to her, forced her to lodge a complaint to the local police station. They accompanied her. After, necessary examination as per the constitutional provision and Indian penal code, Ramen was taken to police custody and a case of molestation registered against him.
Surprisingly, Ramala, hearing this sordid event, rushed to the police station at her earliest, and defied her husband Ramen by alleging Bimala as a filthy woman, who is from the backward community and being uneducated this kind of women deliberately devise such nefarious trick to exploit people like them and make brisk money! She expressed her indignation against her and desirous to terminate her job, but endured only as they cannot provide quick alternative of her, entirely forgotten how docile and humble she is, and what has constrained her to take such bold step where her own humiliation is equally immense in terms of confessing the ordeal she faced in front of public.
Bimala felt utterly despondent. Whole scenario appeared to be utterly unbelievable to her. She could not surmise that Ramala, being a woman will not able to comprehend her plight, rather, fabricate her and assassinate her character too, for whom she worked so sincerely and passionately ! She felt utterly crestfallen. She could now evidently comprehend what is lying for her in future. Within a wink of an eye, life took an unpredictable twist, where she is clouded with sheer despondence. She is in dilemma, whether compromise with the situation would have sensible for her to combat the ordeal and her survival! She felt sheer helpless. Now, majority of the people from the higher echelon are eying on her, expressing their vexation and detestation and considering her as if the guilty of such obnoxious act, who deliberately crafted a ploy to extract unfair means from a family who are reputed(?) and without any hesitation, they branded her as a ‘dirty woman’, whose intention is to exploit money by nefarious design from the people from higher echelon and stigmatized them.
But, now Bimala could envisage the intricacies and gender biased society where we are living. Ramala, though became economically empowered and educationally sound, considering the gender equality and empowerment of women are truly prevailing in a society she is dwelling, actually she also duping her and living with an infatuation of her own. Still male hegemony is evident and obviously in different style. Ramala has to subscribe with the view, that her husband is innocent, not just to compromise with the system she is acquainted with, but also to save her son from any family turmoil which may ruin his future. What an irony!
Ramala, like other educated women who are economically independent, whose proportion are pretty insignificant, comparing not only to their male counterpart, but with large section of women fraternity, who are living in rural India, across the country, who are less privileged, economically and socially backward and they are paying the price of a miniscule female fraternity, who are enjoying freedom and privileges.
India, like developing nations, where feudal vices are still predominant and women are considered as curse. Girl child are treated as inauspicious and female infanticides are prevalent in sizeable proportion in the society we are living. The sacrifice and sufferings of Biamala like so many uneducated poor girls are paving the way for few affluent women to enjoy a comfortable and life of mundane luxury and comfort. A home, which appears apparently as sweet, is being made by the toil of Bimala like domestic helps and they are compensating they luxurious life of Ramala like women. But, unfortunately, both are the worst victims of the available social fabric, where gender discrimination is prevalent in pretty complex design, not making the enemy discern, rather being entangled between them in an unpalatable manner. What a fallacy we observe with ‘Empowerment of Women’!