Letters to Editor 18-03-2012

Bengal’s pride Ladies’ day out

By The Telegraph Online
  • Published 18.03.12

Bengal’s pride

Sir — Born in 1913, Manohar Aich turned 99 yesterday. In a state where brain is prized much more than brawn, Aich is an exception. Winner of the Mr Universe title in 1952, Aich is said not to have fallen ill even for a day. No diet charts for this man, dubbed “pocket Hercules” by his fans. The average Bengali meal of bhaat, daal, curry, fish and meat in moderation is good enough for him. Bodybuilding is the core of his existence. Diversions include listening to folk songs or kirtans in the evenings. Happy birthday, Mr Aich!

Yours faithfully,
Subhayu Saha, Khagra, Murshidabad

Ladies’ day out

Sir — As March 8 came and went, people debated whether we should have a Women’s Day at all since womanhood cannot be celebrated on one specific day of the year. Why do we have a No Smoking Day? Does celebrating that day mean that we advocate smoking for the rest of the year? Women have come a long way, but a longer way is to be traversed still if they are to get rid of all the social stereotypes imposed on them. Women’s Day is celebrated as a landmark indicating the achievements and progress of women over the centuries — their transformation from the house-bound ‘angels of the hearth’ to the independent beings they are now. If a special day is dedicated to women, all men — including rapists, molesters, murderers and the like — will pause and realize the importance of women in their lives.

But every year, on Women’s Day, the accomplishments of only influential women come to light. Shouldn’t underprivileged women too be made to feel the joys of womanhood? If the celebrations reach the poorer sections of society, where the male child is still considered a boon, the commemoration of Women’s Day would be worthwhile.

Yours faithfully,
Sreemoyee Biswas, Calcutta

Sir — Is it not a matter of concern that we celebrate only one day as Women’s Day and leave women to suffer for the rest of the year? Political leaders and ministers keep on insisting that in this country, women and men are granted equal status. Then why do we not have a Men’s Day alongside Women’s Day? Why are women still referred to as the weaker vessels? There is probably no answer to these questions.

Yours faithfully,
K. Swathi, Kharagpur

Sir — On Women’s Day, the face of Everywoman needs to be highlighted. She is neither a coy mistress nor a femme fatale but is the fulcrum of humanity. She is characterized by her devotion, hard work and affection. She plays numerous roles — that of a daughter, friend, sister, wife, mother or grandmother. Unlike her celluloid counterparts, she does not mouth raunchy dialogues while dealing with enemies. But if she chooses, she can be Kali, destroying everything that stands in her way. It is a shame that the girl child is not valued. Even in the 21st century, crimes against women are happening daily. Women are also commodified, especially in the entertainment industry.

It is even more shameful to note that the majority of today’s women are willing to put on skimpy clothes or smoke to appear modern. But being modern means changing one’s outlook. Women’s Day can be best celebrated when women learn to respect and admire themselves.

Yours faithfully,
Amrita Mallik, Calcutta