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Anand Jon wants to be tried in India – I would too, if I were him

September 2, 2009

Fashion designer Anand Jon has been sentenced by a Los Angeles court to 59 years in prison for violent sexual assault on seven young women, some of them under-age. His defence tried to move for a mistrial on the grounds that one of the jurors had contacted Jon’s sister during the trial, but a new trial was not granted by the judge. The concerned juror delivered a “guilty” verdict along with the other 11 jurors in the case.

A month ago, his sister Sanjana had pleaded with the Indian government to extradite him as he would not get a fair trial in the US, being Indian. She claimed then, and did so again after the verdict on September 1, that Jon is a victim of racist discrimination.

Would Anand Jon have been acquitted of such charges in an Indian court? Almost certainly, yes. In a justice system in which alleged rapists are routinely acquitted for “lack of evidence” and proven rapists given a reduced sentence because of their youth and the promising life ahead of them, Sanjana is right to insist that he be tried in an Indian court. In an Indian court, the testimony of women who had willingly gone to his home on the promise of jobs in the fashion business, and then claimed they were raped, would be dismissed out of hand. Especially if the women are white. Gratuitous references to “western women” and their supposed attitudes to sex, pepper judgements and statements by officials on rape in India.

A 1983 judgement of the Gujarat High Court, “progressive” in the sense that it held that corroborative evidence for a charge of rape was not necessary, based itself on the argument that Indian society, unlike the permissive West, is tradition-bound, and therefore a woman was unlikely to make a false accusation of rape as she would “be reluctant to admit that any incident which is likely to reflect on her chastity” had occurred. Western women, of course, are more than capable of such things. As EK Nayanar, Chief Minister of Kerala at the time, said during a furore over the rape of female tourists, there is no need to make such a fuss, rape in the US is as common as drinking a cup of tea. So yes, Anand Jon would have emerged as the wronged victim in an Indian court among white women claiming rape.

Oh, by the way, the Gujarat High Court judgement went on to say:  “Corroboration may be insisted upon when a woman having attained majority is found in a compromising position and there is likelihood of her having levelled such an accusation on account of the instinct of self-preservation.” In other words, if the tradition-bound society of India would make “innocent” women reluctant to level false accusations of rape, it would at the same time motivate “promiscuous” women to hide their lack of virtue precisely through such accusations. So whose innocence or guilt is on trial here? Certainly not the alleged rapist’s.

Over ten years later, Bhanwari Devi still awaits the hearing of her appeal against the acquittal of her upper caste rapists, in the Rajasthan High Court (which appropriately enough has a statue of Manu installed in the premises).

When a woman army officer accused three officers of her unit of sexually harassing her and physically confining her for refusing their advances, a General Court Martial was held. On her. She was sacked this year for levelling false accusations against her fellow officers. Her legal counsel holds that her own charges were never investigated, and were pushed under the carpet.

A rape convict cleared the civil service exam earlier this year while serving his sentence, and was deemed by the Delhi High Court to have “redeemed himself in jail”, his incarceration of five years having met “the ends of justice”. His victim, who committed suicide,  is beyond justice or redemption. While tutoring her in Chemistry, her suicide note said, he drugged her, had sex with her and later blackmailed her into continuing to have sex with him, promising her that they would soon get married. He then tried to make her have sex with a third person from whom he wanted a a favour. At this, she committed suicide. However, the news report says, “The High Court found no evidence to substantiate this allegation (in the suicide note) that the woman actually had sex with a third person”.  So his conviction under Section 306 (abetment to suicide) has been set aside, and he is deemed to have served his sentence for “obtaining sex on the false promise of marriage”, which constitutes rape in our legal system.  (Correction – it can constitute rape if so interpreted by judges. There have been cases in which judges have ruled otherwise. A 1984 judgement of the Calcutta High Court sternly ruled that “If a fully grown girl consents to sexual intercourse on the promise of marriage and continues to indulge in such activity until she becomes pregnant, it is an act of promiscuity.” And promiscuity, we know, is a Western aberration far more serious than mere rape.)

So look out for the bright young officer Ashok Rai “alias Amit” – the skills he showed as a young tutor will be multiplied with the power that comes with being a sarkari afsar.  The fact that he “cracked” the “tough civils”, makes our judiciary look indulgently upon his boyish pranks – drugging, raping and pimping. He is now well equipped to take up the reins of the country’s administration.

In August 2008, the Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision to commute the death sentence of a rapist who killed two women, to life imprisonment. The man had hacked to death the woman who attempted to resist her rape as well as her grandmother, who came to her rescue. The crime, declared both courts, does not fall into the category of ‘rarest of rare’ because the murders were not pre-meditated, but committed ‘in a fit of passion.’ The pre-meditated crime was only that of rape, after all, which any red-blooded man might engage in at some point in his life. Resistance would naturally meet with a violent response, as any woman should know. If you are killed while resisting rape (silly girl!), it is hardly a rare enough circumstance to warrant the severest punishment.

(I am opposed to the death penalty, by the way. The point is that in opposition to the growing anti-death penalty movement, judicial opinion in India holds the death penalty to be necessary, albeit in the ‘rarest of rare cases.’ So when a death sentence is awarded, the crime in that case is being understood as heinous enough to deserve the maximum punishment. Conversely, when it is either not awarded or a previous sentence of death is commuted to life imprisonment; or if a sentence of life imprisonment is reduced to a few years, the assessment is that the crime is a lesser one. Rape is clearly, one of the most laughable of crimes, when seen in this framework.)

Is there a racist bias against Anand Jon in the US? Quite possibly. There have been references in public discourse to “sand nigger” and “curry-flavoured d***”  (Not maidenly modesty that makes me bleep the word out, but that I dont want kafila to turn up in searches for porn). Nevertheless, has he had a fair trial? It seems so. The juror improperly trying to make contact with Jon’s sister is a technicality that has no bearing on the evidence, which is overwhelming.

Is the sentence inordinately heavy? No. In 2003, Andrew Luster, heir to the Max Factor fortune, was given 124 years for drug-induced date rape. The American Supreme Court refused to overturn this ruling.

No wonder Anand Jon wants to come back to his native land. Much better climate for rapists.

33 Comments leave one →
  1. Sohail Hashmi permalink
    September 2, 2009 5:45 PM

    You are absolutely right about the likely outcome for Jon if the trial was held in india

    aside from the fact that in India rape seems to cast a long shadow on the raped and the rapist invariably gets only his knuckles struck with a ruler for being unruly, there is another factor in operation here and that is the fact that “injustice seems to occur” only when people like us do not get justice. the murder of Jessica lal and the acquital of the accused not only engages the entire media for weeks it seems to hasten the process of justice delivery as well,

    but in the case of the BMW driven by a well connected brat the case can drag on for years and the accused eventually walk away with a mild hit on the knuckles.

    no protests no dharnas the reasons are obvious. the victims were not like us, they were migrant labourers. if they had not died here, they would have died in a flood or a draught or an outbreak of cholera. in any case these guys have no idea how to cross a road and why must they sleep on the pavements. they should all be sent back shouldn’t they?

    One did not see the jessica lal kind of vigils at India gate for demanding justice for the Rapists of Bhanwri devi, for the victims of Mr Nanda’s drunken driving, for demanding examplary punishment for the ABVP killers of prof sabharwal.

    If the jon case was transfered to India, i am sure the candle light sit ins would be back in full force.

    he is like us after all, he might also walk away with the kind of justice he would like

  2. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    September 2, 2009 11:06 PM

    Sohail, I was thinking too in this context of Sanjeev Nanda, son and grandson of top-ranking naval officers, driving away in his BMW after killing six people – three pavement dwellers and three police constables. Awarded two years in prison, three months of which were remitted for good conduct, he walked out beaming into the flash of cameras. There were interviews with every member of Nanda’s “relieved” family that day in the newspapers. With those of the victims of Nanda’s driving? I didn’t see any.
    As for Anand Jon, Indian newspapers have not stopped mentioning the fact that he designed for “celebrities like Paris Hilton and Janet Jackson”, which should have given him a special status, they probably feel. The fashion fraternity is concerned. A designer said: “This is a request from the design fraternity to the government to look into this matter and assure fair trial”.

  3. Manash permalink
    September 2, 2009 11:12 PM

    Dear Sohail,

    As much as I wholeheartedly agree with you (who won’t!), I would like to complicate the angst you have regarding the class nature of the protest against rape and murder that you are reacting to here. I think the fact that the elite came out in the streets for Jessica Lal is commendable and full of hope in the context of the masculinized and violent atmosphere in the elite world. Of course we can’t expect the same crowd to feel sensitive about other cases where the victims don’t belong to their class. But I think we are condemned to fight the larger menace of this masculine violence by negotiating only within certain class structures separately, and yet building up new strategies of mobilization. For example, when migrant laborers are attacked or killed, we need to mobilize the class of people who can bring in the numbers in the marches. We have to be pessimistic but bold, critical but hopeful, cynical but smart.

  4. Rahul Siddharthan permalink
    September 3, 2009 10:30 AM

    Very good article. It’s not so much our judicial system as our entire societal mindset that is biased against women in this way. And it’s not just foreign women: women from the northeast, women who wear western dress, women who are seen in public with men, are all supposedly “asking for it.” The army case was appalling. We are little better than an Islamic sharia state in these respects.

    And it’s anyway a ludicrous demand to transfer the case to India. If he committed a crime in a foreign country, he needs to answer to the laws of that country. Extradition would only make sense if he were hiding in the US from Indian justice.

  5. September 4, 2009 4:47 PM

    Nice article professor. Anand would have remained unpunished if it were our India! If it were our India, the matter [and the complainants] would not have even reached the court, needless to say!

    We are as much racially prejudiced as the Americans if not more! We have our own vocabulary: chinki, angrej, gora, safed chamadi and the like!

    Not only a rapist but also communal lumpens make it to the IAS! Praful Bidwai [TOI, 28 July 1994 has documented that probationers had celebrated in Mussorie in the night of Babri Masjid demolition! The Civil Services Exam sucks; I got lot of experience. It is designed to select the more average! You can be a dowry -seeker, murderer, rapist, dull, unimaginative, greedy money maker who endorses coachings and mags and whatnot and you still have a good chance!

  6. September 4, 2009 6:16 PM

    Thank you for bringing in the larger context. With the system in India being as it is, no doubt Anand Jon & family would live for him to be tried here and given some half-baked 3-4 year sentence.

  7. Subash permalink
    September 5, 2009 10:43 PM

    It would have taken years to get a judgement and in the mean time witnesses would have been bribed, threatened etc and the whole case turned on its head – as can be done by influential people.
    And realistically speaking the rape charge would have never been levelled here. So the question of prosecution would never be.

  8. September 6, 2009 10:17 PM

    Powerfully written article that made my blood boil as I read it. The manner in which rape cases are dealt with in India is appalling. I am reminded of a recent event where the chairperson of the NCW said something I thought was completely inappropriate. In the Shiney Ahuja case, she expressed the wish that that particular rape case be moved through a fast track court because of the “interest of both parties involved in this case” and that justice delayed in such a case only leads to witnesses getting scared or backing off. What does she think happens in all the other cases of rape that remain undecided for years?!

    She also decided to go to Mumbai to meet Shiney’s maid, and wife. I tried but couldn’t find any reason why the latter would help.

    I also second the point made by Sohail regarding the complete lack of public outrage at crimes committed on almost a daily basis, against groups of persons from different castes or classes.

    I know it has probably been spoken of in several circles but the reaction of shock at Arushi’s murder in Noida was shocking in itself. Those who were horrified by the idea that a ‘father could do that to his daughter’, in my opinion ought to have read the newspapers more. The shock, while warranted because of the fact that a heinous crime was committed, was misplaced. A father killing his daughter only became alarming when the upper middle classes realised that the scum had got right into their privileged circles. The elite were perturbed because thus far, this kind of behaviour was seen only amongst the lower rungs of society and wasnt deemed worthy of consideration.. Now the rot seemed to have floated upwards and caught them as well.

    Manash, I don’t understand your comment, so if you would explain further I would appreciate it.

    When discussions like these spring up, especially bearing in mind the complete failure of the justice system, it really makes the idea of mob justice- a la Gangaajal- sound like a damn good idea. I realise the gross inadequacies of that course of action of course, but I can’t lie and say it wouldn’t please me to see the public get enraged by injustice and crime- regardless of who or how rich the victim is.

    I would prefer that kind of society any day to one where people silently witness the rape of a young girl in the same train compartment as them, and are still able to look at their faces in the mirror the next morning without feeling utterly ashamed.

  9. Manash permalink
    September 7, 2009 4:52 PM

    Surabhi,

    It would help if you specify what exactly would you like me to elaborate upon from the things I said.

    • September 8, 2009 2:55 PM

      Hi Manash,

      “But I think we are condemned to fight the larger menace of this masculine violence by negotiating only within certain class structures separately, and yet building up new strategies of mobilization. For example, when migrant laborers are attacked or killed, we need to mobilize the class of people who can bring in the numbers in the marches”

      I couldn’t really place the above extract vis a vis the issue of there being little or no public outrage like there was in the Jessica Lal case for instance, when the victim belongs to a different caste or class. If you could clarify, I’d appreciate it.

  10. Manash permalink
    September 9, 2009 2:43 AM

    Hi Surabhi,

    I think I have to think through this sudden idea of “negotiating only within certain class structures separately and yet building up new strategies of mobilization” more elaborately, and hopefully reply to you when I sort it out. Thanks for making me think harder on it.

  11. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    September 21, 2009 2:06 PM

    Further evidence that Anand Jon’s sister Sanjana has got the Indian legal system absolutely right.

    British woman tells of humiliation by Indian court

  12. vrijendra permalink
    September 26, 2009 9:42 PM

    I do not wish to talk about the reality of rape trials in India because many people have already commented on it. But I am constantly puzzled, shocked and amused by the widely held notion of ‘western women’ and their ‘(casual) attitude towards sex and marriage” among Indians. I am associated with Women Development Cell in the University of MUmbai (an off shoot of Vishakha judgement but we do not call it cell to deal with sexual harassment at work, partly because it goes beyond that but partly because college authorities, at least in Bombay, cannot seem to speak the word sex in any context!). We regularly have gender sensitisation workshops for college students and teachers and every time we talk about sexual choice and sexual relationships, the issue of western culture unfailingly comes up and then the discussion shifts to how ‘our culture is different’ and ‘superior’! As one teacher put it in the workshop we had last week, ‘they have relations, even children and do not get married only’!

    I think the fact of ‘sexual choice and freedom’ that women in the west have is something that many people in India find deeply offensive and from this draw a whole range of cultural conclusions. That is why in India, stories about rapes of whilte women are routinely ridiculed in courts, media and among people as well. It is widely assumed that if a woman can have sex with anybody why would she say ‘no’ to anybody and then how she can be raped! An idea of promiscuity that even our courts seem to uphold.
    I think that perhaps when we discuss rape in India we should also extend debate to the issue of sexual freedom and choice. Then, may be over time, our attitude towards western women may change. But it is a complex and difficult debate because unfortunately even among many progressive people and activists in India, it is not very easy to openly discuss about sexual choice and sexual freedom.

  13. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    September 27, 2009 10:22 AM

    Vrijendra, you have raised an important issue here. The discussion around rape across the political spectrum (from feminist/progressive to sexist/patriarchal), coheres around the idea of “security and protection” rather than “autonomy and sexual freedom”. It is inevitable then, that those women who refuse to accept the patriarchal security blanket can never be assumed to be raped. Nor hijras, nor men.
    I am reminded of a student’s retort to a teacher’s claim that women are sexually harassed because they wear jeans (the Western woman’s dress!). The student, speaking in Hindi, and clearly not from an upper-class background, said she had found that when she wore salwar kameez she faced more sexual harassment than she did when she wore jeans. Her assessment? That when she was in the former dress, she appeared seedhi-saadhi and timid, and unlikely to object, while in jeans she appeared confident and bold, and therefore men thought twice before taking her on!
    This boldness is precisely the problem for everyone, whether progressive or otherwise, as you say.

  14. Raj... permalink
    September 28, 2009 3:35 AM

    Nivedita: Your linking AJ’s trial with the so called outdated legal system in India is indeed deplorable.
    After seeing the comments, it seems like most of you here do not understand the fact that how outrageously strict legal systems and wierd laws America has, with regards to sexual crimes.
    Recently a 35 year old white woman (a school teacher in this case) was exonerated of all charges of sexually exploiting a 15 yr old boy student of her school. The court, in this case, said that she being a woman she cannot be held guilty of raping a boy student : Isn’t this an example of double standards in the American legal system ???

    A few months ago, an Indian software engineer was arrested for engaging in online chatting with a minor girl, who actually was a disguised police officer. The officer lured him to perform sexually explicit conversation on the net, and finally arrested him for the same. Now the guy faces life imprisonment, even though he has not committed any actual crime. America is the only country in the world where such strange laws exist.

    Today, Mr. Norman Polanski was arrested for a 32 year old rape charge against him in America. The victim in this case, a woman who is living with family now, sued him several years ago and got a hefty sum in an out of court settlement then. And surpirsingly, she now dislikes all the media attention and wants the case to end (after having got all the money)!!

    But Anand Jon case cannot be linked to any of the examples detailed in your article. For it looks like AJ was sued by a group of woman who had consensual sex with him and finally turned against him when they couldn’t make any big in the fashion world. Else, they wouldn’t have waited all these years to lodge a complaint against him.

    It is quite evident that these women slept with him, expecting to make money and become famous. And it is quite possible that, later, when they couldn’t get any of these, they found it a wonderful opportunity to register cases against him.

    It should be noted here that in America, many high profile sexual assault victims often becomes a celebrity overnight and pockets millions of dollars for telling their stories to tabloids and publishing books (for eg: the hooker in the sexual episode involving ex. NY Mayor Eliot Spitzer). May be this lucrative option would have prompted the girls to level allegations against him, after keeping silent for years. Also it is being said that there is a conspiracy against Jon by his rivals in the fashion industry, which cannot be ruled out.

    Nivedita, you say that you are against capital punishment, but at the same time indirectly hinting that rapists should be given death. I have no objection to it, but there are equally serious or more serious crimes like, terrorism, communal violence and corruption. The people involved in these crimes should not be spared too.

  15. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    September 28, 2009 1:01 PM

    Call it a girlish whimsicality Raj, but I feel rape is “as serious or more serious than” terrorism, communal violence and corruption.
    Your comment could figure in a feminist text-book on how the misogynist world-view works, reflected in the media, courts and judicial discourse – the rapist is the victim, the raped woman the accused.
    What is really interesting of course, is that you toss off the following:
    “Recently a 35 year old white woman (a school teacher in this case) was exonerated of all charges of sexually exploiting a 15 yr old boy student of her school. The court, in this case, said that she being a woman she cannot be held guilty of raping a boy student..”
    What a big fat pack of lies!
    In this recently concluded case of Linda Glide, the boy student did not only NOT make a complaint (the teacher was being prosecuted by the state) but he appeared in court in her defence to say he was seventeen and a half at the time, that he initiated the affair, pursued her aggressively when she refused, looked up her address on the internet and pursued her home. He said all this himself, the student.
    Even so, Glide has not been acquitted. She is debarred from teaching in her state, and she has been given five years of probation for endangering the welfare of a child.
    Your unethical and dishonest misrepresentation of this case is exactly what happens during hearings on rape.
    Thank you for revealing the workings of misogyny and masculinist power so clearly.

    • Raj... permalink
      September 29, 2009 11:52 PM

      Though I am not surprised, your definiton of poeple who do not agree with your comments or have a counter view, as misogynsts, can be treated as a typical feminist character.
      For such women, every man who do not agree with her view, is a misogynist, because this branding will help her achieve the twin objective of not having to engage in a meaningful and respectful debate and win support from other similar minded people.
      Your finding that my comments are just an expression of mascular power is rather childish. It is interesting to note that you conveniently chose to ignore my mentioning of other few incidents, whcih may be disturbing to you.

      And now about your lengthy arguement supporting th teacher, If AJ argues that what he did was for love towards the girls and he never promised them anything in return, would you also accept that?
      And who says that everytime a woman engages in sex with a man, she is being lured by the offer of other benefits, but not the pleasure of doing the act itself. It can be argued that the girls just wanted to enjoy the company of a famous and rich man and handsome too. All the girls enjoyed the good time with him at his luxorious willas and years later one fine morning realised that they had been sexually exploited.

      And you finding merit here by saying that it was the state which prosecuted the woman, it doesn’t make any difference to the victim in terms of the punishment granted, if the accuser is the state or an individual. No big deal about the punishment granted to this woman ( it can’t be called a punishment !). Complare that with 50 yr term for Anand Jon.

      If you would want to believe the students helping statement for the victim, you must also be willing to consider AJ’s arguements countering the allegations by the gilrs. Strangely,the court (and people like you)would want to believe the words of a guy, if the victim is a woman. But the same doesn’t happen if the accused is a guy.
      I understand very well that woman are harrassed during the hearings of many rape cases in India, but that doesn’t stop me saying that harassing of males in the cases involving consensual sex, is wrong.

      Also my subject of discussion has only been the Anand Jon case. But you are attempting to generalise my views and create a false impression here. I have seen many somments similar to that of mine, from woman in many american blogs, supporting Anand Jon. I wonder what names you have for them, a Fisogynist or feminine vanity power !

  16. Manash permalink
    September 28, 2009 1:43 PM

    “For it looks like AJ was sued by a group of woman who had consensual sex with him and finally turned against him when they couldn’t make any big in the fashion world. Else, they wouldn’t have waited all these years to lodge a complaint against him.”

    Mr. Raj…,

    If a woman had consensual sex for professional gains which was denied/refused her later, I would definitely call it professional rape. But the more defining fact which easily escapes your view is why do women need to sleep with an AJ and well-known pimps like him to get anywhere in the fashion world? Why doesn’t your thick head question this male monopoly? Why is AJ the doorkeeper of fashion? Why does he hold the keys? Why are those ambitious women who want to make it in fashion forced to go through his bedroom?

    “And it is quite possible that, later, when they couldn’t get any of these, they found it a wonderful opportunity to register cases against him.”

    Mr. Raj…,

    If AJ found it a wonderful opportunity to take advantage of these women’s ambitions and sleep with them, then the women also shouldn’t let go of their wonderful opportunity to sue him later. Tit for tat – as you would have learnt in school.

  17. Raj... permalink
    September 29, 2009 10:03 PM

    Manash, It seems like your problem is that you just hate Anand Jon’s success or do not like him to be in the fashion world. Or rather you dont like so many male achievers in the fashion industry.
    Sounds like the voice of a feminist…

    Though I am not appreciating all that Anand Jon did in this particular case, but I do understand the fact that he was a talented person, if not he would not have become such a big success in a short period.

    And your point about male dominance, it must be noted that those who are intellignet and have unique skills go places, in any field, irrespective of gender.
    And, why most of them are males? I think you got to spend some time to enlighten yourself about understanding human gender and qualities, without any biase !

    You are indirectly saying that a woman is right in offering sex to a man who promise her something else like career etc. Isn’t your argument a little strange? You must note one important point here, even if the reason for engaging in sexual relations is something else,, what the woman says in the court is only taken into consideration.
    For example, I can have sexual relationship with my subordinate at office, because of pure love or lust between us. But after some time if our relations become sour, then the woman has a wonderful weapon in had to take revenge on me. She can accuse me of raping her in the past, by promising career advancement, even though that was not the case, and any court will accept this, for there is no proof needed for this.
    It is like saying every citizen has a right to pay bribe to an official and later sue him if he did not do the work for him.
    And in a consensual sexual act, both the man and the woman enjoy pleasure. So don’t say that sex is somethng a woman can offer only to a man, for getting other benefits and the joy of doing it cannot be factor in the decision.

    I did learn the phrase ‘Tit for tat’ at school, like you , but not from newspapers or court cases where a man is sentenced to 50 or 100 years in prison for enjoying consensual sex with a woman for few minutes ( or hours, which I leave it to your fancy !)….

  18. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    September 30, 2009 8:17 AM

    Raj,
    You say: “And now about your lengthy arguement supporting th teacher, ”
    I have not supported the teacher. I have corrected your lie that she was acquitted. I pointed out the circumstances that may have led to her being given a relatively milder punishment than imprisonment (probation and being debarred from teaching). The punishment, let us remember here, is for the crime of statutory rape, that is, the boy was below the age of consent, so even though he said he consented and even initiated the relationship, the teacher is still guilty by American law, of a punishable crime.
    I pointed out the chief difference in the two cases, i.e. that the supposed victim in the teacher’s case not only did not make a complaint, but came to court to defend her, unlike Anand Jon, in whose case there were that many complaints, and all the women came to court to testify against him.
    I was correcting your use of your false account of the case to claim that it is “an example of double standards in the American legal system”.
    I hold that what the teacher did was wrong. Unless she claims the student raped her, which she does not, it was utterly inappropriate for her to have sex with a person who was at the time her student.
    You also say “Also my subject of discussion has only been the Anand Jon case.”
    Wrong again. Read your own ranting comment again and see how many instances you have brought in, all of them slanted or misrepresented to reflect your own misogynist views.
    And about Polanski (whom also you mention as another poor victim), take a look at this:
    Reminder. Roman Polanski raped a child.
    But one thing – and only one thing – you say in your various comments I fully agree with, and is a correct characterization – I AM a typical feminist. Thank goddess this means there are thousands of my “type” out there!

  19. Manash permalink
    September 30, 2009 4:08 PM

    Just one last, conclusive point Raj…, as it is difficult for me to argue with someone who understands “basic political science”, as you had put it earlier; the kind of political science you learn from guide books (kunjis).

    “And, why most of them are males? I think you got to spend some time to enlighten yourself about understanding human gender and qualities, without any biase !”

    I think I might have missed a point there. That men are generally more talented than women, not only in fashion but perhaps in every other field. I guess you mean one has to accept it graciously, particularly disgruntled feminists and their deceived male supporters. Hmm, I should think about it, right?

    But Raj…, to tell you man to man, I find you to be very shabbily talented: in your language, your arguments, your tastes as well as your political understanding. I think you are one man who’s not fit for your subject. And since you don’t make sense at all, I wonder how I can take you seriously in your gender claims, etc. If instead of you someone else would have made these arguments in a much more “talented” manner, maybe I could have considered them. But you fall much below par. Reading you tastes like chewing a rotten bubblegum. In fact, I quite find you a bubblegum type. The moment you try to expand your mind in any argument – the bubble bursts!

    My friendly advice is – try to improve yourself instead of wasting time defending talented males. Do something worthwhile so that other, intelligent men can defend you some day.

    Sincerely yours.

  20. vrijendra permalink
    October 1, 2009 6:32 PM

    Hi Manash:
    I do not know who you are and who this raj is, but one piece of advice from a stranger who has been following this post quite diligently: do not give up on educating Raj. It is important. Of course, it is not easy. But think about the underlying assumptions that Raj makes all along about women like Nivedita(man to man).
    What Raj is really saying is that women like Nivedita -a typical feminist (?)- are jealous of Anand Jon (so are all the women who accused him of rape and testified in court against him) and seeking revenge and they have succeded in destroying a talented man(!).

    I do not know Manash, if you watch TV serials or read many mainstream women’ magazines or follow the gossip among ‘normal’ Indian men. But if you do any of these three with any interest, you will find echoes of Raj’s voice all over. And you know they all think that women like Nivedita are relly anti-men.

    That is why by calling Raj names, you do not extend the debate very far. Take him seriously and seee how the debate goes. He is the ‘patricarchy’ that feminists talk aboout. Also see, how sure he is in making so many claims about women like Nivedita. Where did he get them from? I cannot imagine he has met anyone like her (well, there are not many like Nivedita unfortunately but that is the point.) The world Raj inhabits is the world many around us inhabit; and they are no strangers; they are in our midst, all around us. For this world, you and Nivedita (and me?) are weird people. I have been following this post and comments on it, specially after Raj intervened, simply because I have been wondering how to negotiate with Raj’s world.
    regards
    vrijendra

    Hi Raj:
    Sorry. In the response above, I have used you as a third person. But here is my question to you: Why are you such a staunch defender of Anand? Why do you have such a touching faith in his innocence? And how come you have such an opiniated view about Nivedita (and women like her). Why do not you pay attention to what she is saying, for a change? And if you ‘abuse’ her as a typical feminist, what does that make you? I will tell you: a typical male chauvinist pig (MCP). How many women like Nivedita have you actually met by the way? Not heard on TV for two minutes but actually met. Try meeting someone like her. And try to listen. Here is my unsolicited advice to you: do not waste your time on louts like Anand (unless you are related to him. Then you must disclose such facts in your comments) And do not call people names when you do not understand their politics. I am sure you are a grown up man. Act like one. Learn to be humble. Stop ranting. Ask yourself a simple question again: why are so many young women willing to testify against Anand in court? May be because they feel they were really wronged by him? Think hard before you post your response again.
    regards
    vrijendra

    • Raj... permalink
      October 1, 2009 10:44 PM

      Vijendra,

      I did not wish to engage in a debate with you. But I would like to reply to some of your prejudistic statements here.

      “And do not call people names when you do not understand their politics.” :
      Ohh this must have been told to your respected friend Nivedita for she is the one ( and Manesh too) who has been indulging in it. She started it and continued it in till her last response.

      “I will tell you: a typical male chauvinist pig (MCP)”: This comment from you is worth ignoring. For Nivedita has already used a more fancy term for that and I have replied to that as well.

      “Learn to be humble” : I am afraid I do not have to learn that from you. You know nothing about me. I advice you to think well before you give advice to poeple you have no idea who they are.

      “I am sure you are a grown up man, Stop ranting”: According to me, there are three ways of growing up; Physical growth, mental growth and pilosophical growth. Your comments prove that your growth has stopped at the second one. Well, you may not understand what I am saying for it is just ranting in your language…….

      And about your questions on Anand Jon case, I am not interested in engaging another set of discussion on that subject. Also you have not understood my point of discussion on this ( you may refer my earlier postings for that)

      And finally one question to the moderator of this blog: Yo have been deleting my posted messages here. You did it twice in last two days. Ironically, you are allowing people to post even communal and seditious remarks on your site ( pls refer the comments by your friend kumarpushp on the topic of arrest of DHRM activists)
      May be if your are only interested in seeing supportive remarks here, please be open , so that I can save my time.

  21. Nivedita Menon permalink*
    October 2, 2009 9:46 AM

    Raj, regarding moderation of your comments, please see our policy on this matter.
    You have written 10 comments in four days, of which 8 have been passed, not one of them less than 300 words each. The comments that were deleted simply repeated endlessly the same arguments, or lack of them. Not one of your comments was “supportive”, so clearly we give everyone a fair hearing.
    What you consider to be communal remarks (by Kumarpushp whom you mention as an example) are not so in our opinion, and as for sedition, the category does not exist in our dictionary.
    By the way, I think Kumarpushp, whom I do not know personally, would be quite surprised to be described by you as my “supporter” and “friend”! You have such a narrow blinkered vision that your world is divided into “us” and them”, but kafila readers generally represent important differences of opinion within a broad “us” – everyone who disagrees with you here is not necessarily a “supporter” or “friend” of kafila or of individual authors.
    The fact is Raj, that you have had ample space to make your patriarchal and anti-democratic views very clear indeed. But you must excuse us if we are not interested in being the forum to publish your collected works.

  22. Manash permalink
    October 2, 2009 11:53 AM

    Vijendra,

    I am not here to do samaj seva, much as I like the things you said. I am here doing politics and the response you already received from Raj…, would tell you how you and I are placed. I don’t believe in the politics of conversion – I believe in confrontation. It would include even verbal violence. Because there are people who can violate your sensibilities and it is impossible to deal with them in a Gandhian manner alone, always. I guess I should stop here.

  23. Manashi Misra permalink
    December 12, 2009 12:11 PM

    I know I am rather late in reading this piece by Prof. Menon, but I must let you know one incident about a very important journalist and author of Assam. Some ten years ago, Homen Borgohain, a leading (the most leading??) literary figure of Assam was accused of sexually harassing a woman jornalist. She was employed in the news paper of which Mr. Borgohain was editor in chief at that time. After that the story took its natural turn. Hundreds of letters poured in the news paper in support of the much revered author/jornalist. If I remember correctly, only a few– not more than 5/6– respondents dared speak out against Mr. Borgohain. He did file a defamation case, I don’t really know if the verdict is out; but in all probability he would ain the case if he has not already. Oh yes the story died its natural death. Nobody talks about it anymore in Assam. Just as an afterthought, Mr. Borgohain is as important in the field of Assamese literature as Roman Polanski in the field of cinema. But then, Polanski does get convicted……

  24. lily permalink
    April 22, 2010 11:17 AM

    So a women that states her opinion is labeled a “feminist” … im not surprised.. considering the ones accusing of feminism are also the same that call a judge and jury racist upon getting a verdict they disapprove of… always looking for an out are we Raj?
    All that Anand has been charged with can be looked at from both sides of view and perhaps there may even be some viable arguments defending both sides however, he had sexual encounters with girls that were under age.. way way underage. THAT surely cant be over looked. For that he is certainly guilty. I’m glad he got the punishment he deserved though i think publicly castrating him would be even more appropriate.

  25. July 23, 2010 9:31 PM

    Theres two elements that I think is important concerning rape. Women has to stop feel ashamed, if thats possible, ant try to helt each other instead of pushing themselves down. The other thing is that men has to start behaving like men and make a clear and visible stand against rape. To be a real man is first and foremost to make everyone around him safe. Rape conserrns and touches us all. Be responsible,

    http://finnhjalmar.wordpress.com/2010/07/23/gasoline-on-%C2%ABthe-fire-of-shame%C2%BB/

  26. Shubhra permalink
    September 24, 2010 4:50 PM

    I am totally new to this and I just read it and was left wondering what should be th punisment for rape. “Just a death sentence” is not good enough. Though,even that would come as a relief in India.Nothing seems to have any effect on the thinking of the people. The victim, “the raped” continues to be “the one”. Can any one think of a way out.

  27. Jacob Chacko permalink
    October 23, 2011 3:06 AM

    Well I’m a real late entry to this discussion. I do agree with the authour that the legal, moral and social structure is unfairly biased against a woman who comes out to accuse a man for rape. However as regards to this particular case i find it highly unlikely that a man working in the same socia;l circle of these aspiring models managed to rape more than 20 women linked to each other. It would be possible that some of them may have just jumped on the bandwagon as Mr Raj suggested (i disagree with most of what he has to say). The question that this case should raise is whether all such cases can be treated as rape. Norway has come forward in classifying the different forms of rape with each type having differing punishment. This may be a better approach.
    Moreover if MsA slept with Mr AJ and attained result B and Ms C sleeps with Mr AJ in the hope that she would attain the same result B without an explicit assurance from Mr Jon that her actions may be “rewarded” with result B…then what of that?
    And lastly if sex for an expected material gain is now to be considered as a “transaction” with certain responsibilities expected from the man recieving the benefit then does this not border on prostitution?

Trackbacks

  1. Posts about sexual harassment (best posts combined for review) as of September 2, 2009 | Discrimination Law News
  2. Rape convictions in India and Anand Jon at Blogbharti
  3. Delhi gang rape: a case for the death penalty | India Insight

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