Waking to this news today was a welcomed change. As my mother herself was serving tea to my father, I read – “Wife is not a chattel”
The Bombay High Court upholded a 35-year-old man’s conviction for assaulting his wife, saying the wife’s refusal to make tea for her husband could not be accepted as a provocation for him to assault her.
A wife is not a chattel or an object. Marriage ideally is a partnership based on equality. More often than not, it is far from that. Cases such as these, are not uncommon. Such cases reflect the imbalance of gender — skewed patriarchy, the socio-cultural milieu one has grown up in, which often seeps into a marital relationship.
The Bombay High Court upheld the conviction and 10 years’ imprisonment awarded to Santosh Atkar (35), a resident of Pandharpur in Solapur district, by a local court in 2016.
He was found guilty on the charge of culpable homicide not amounting to murder. As per the order, Atkar and his wife had been having disputes for some time.
On the day of the incident in December 2013, his wife insisted on going out without making a cup of tea for him. The man then struck her with a hammer, injuring her grievously.
As per the case details and testimony of the couple’s daughter, Atkar then cleaned the spot of the crime, bathed his wife and took her to hospital. She succumbed to her injuries after being in the hospital for about a week.
The defence argued that Atkar had been provoked into committing the crime because his wife refused to make tea.
The notions of patriarchy and the idea that the woman is a man’s property still prevail in society, leading a man to think that his wife is his “chattel”, the court said.
The court further said an imbalance of gender roles exists in society, where the wife is expected to do all the household chores.
“There is an imbalance of gender roles, where the wife, as a homemaker, is expected to do all the household chores. Emotional labour in a marriage is also expected to be done by the wife. Coupled with these imbalances in the equation, is the imbalance of expectation and subjugation,” the high court said.
Social conditions of women also make them handover themselves to their spouses, the high court said.
“Thus, men, in such cases, consider themselves as primary partners and their wives, chattel,” the high court said.
The Bombay High Court said it is unfortunate that such a “medieval notion” of wife being the husband’s property still exists, and the wife is expected to do what her husband wished her to do.
Social media is flooded with feminists posts, that talk about gender equality and discrimination. While those posts and opinions are doing their bit, it is a judgement like this one that truly sends out a stern message in society.
While celebrity and stardom may look all glitzy and glamorous to the outside world, little do we realise that even celebs and famous personalities are after all vulnerable humans like us and are fighting their own battles. While some fall sick and quickly recover, many illnesses are fatal, chronic, and invisible with pain being one of the long term issues that can hinder every minute of your existence. While looking beautiful and happy on the outside, here are 10 lady celebs who have not had it easy and have battled with chronic pain disorders in their life.
The Emmy-nominated host of Bravo TV’s Top Chef, Padma Lakshmi, now 48, suffers from endometriosis. Padma told in an interview to a magazine in April 2009 that she found out in a very hard, difficult way–and had to be operated on. In endometriosis, during each menstrual cycle, tissue builds up, breaks down, and bleeds, leading to very painful menstrual cramps, chronic lower back and pelvic pain, painful sex, bleeding, diarrhea, constipation, bloating, and nausea. What started as cramps at age 13 for her, got worse over time. For more than two decades, Lakshmi had struggled to manage the chronic pain that arrived with her periods.She is now an advocate on women’s health and works to destigmatize the topic of menstruation.
Sonali Bendre was been diagnosed with metastatic cancer also known as high-grade cancer where cancer cells spread to the rest of the body through the circulatory or lymphatic system. Sonali Bendre revealed that she was suffering from continuous pain in her body which led to her getting tested in the first place, and that was how she found out about the disease.
”As women we are thought to bear the pain as a part of our life and so we don’t take our aches and pains seriously and that is what made me delay my diagnosis,” she said in a TV interview. She underwent treatment in New York.
28 years old Selena Marie Gomez the singer, songwriter, actress, and producer from Texas, USA said in 2015 that she suffers from lupus, an inflammatory disease that causes the immune system to attack its own tissues. Apart from skin rashes, lupus is known to cause achy joints (arthralgia), swollen joints (arthritis), constant or severe fatigue, ankle swelling. Lupus harmed her kidneys, and she underwent a kidney transplant in 2017.
Stephanie Germanotta is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, actress, and businesswoman. Two years back, Gaga revealed her struggle with fibromyalgia, a condition that affects the nervous system and causes widespread pain throughout the body.
She also came up with a documentary about it. “In our documentary the #chronicillness #chronicpain I deal with is #Fibromyalgia,” she tweeted in September 2017. “I wish to help raise awareness & connect people who have it.” Fibromyalgia causes widespread muscle pain, along with fatigue and issues with sleep and memory.
“I get so irritated with people who don’t believe fibromyalgia is real,” the singer said in an interview to the media. “For me, and I think for many others, it’s really a cyclone of anxiety, depression, PTSD, trauma, and panic disorder, all of which sends the nervous system into overdrive, and then you have nerve pain as a result.”
International model Gigi Hadid or Jelena Noura (also the wife of Zayn Malik of One Direction band fame) suffers from Hashimoto’s disease is an autoimmune disorder in which your immune system creates antibodies that damage your thyroid gland and what causes the immune system to attack the thyroid gland is still unknown. Muscle aches, tenderness and stiffness, joint pain and stiffness, and muscle weakness are common symptoms among other issues.
“For those of you so determined to come up [with] why my body has changed over the years, you may not know that when I started [at] 17 I was not yet diagnosed [with] Hashimoto’s disease,” she tweeted in February 2018. “Those of [you] who called me ‘too big for the industry’ were seeing inflammation & water retention due to that.”
The former world No. 1 tennis Player Venus was diagnosed with Sjogren’s syndrome, an auto-immune disease whose symptoms include joint pain and fatigue. Williams has struggled since her diagnosis, pulling out of the 2011 US Open after being overwhelmed with fatigue. In Srojen’s syndrome, the body’s immune system attacks its own healthy cells that produce saliva and tears. Sjögren’s syndrome often occurs with other such disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis and lupus. Muscle or joint pain, swelling between the jaw and ears (swollen salivary glands), and some other symptoms of this disease.
“The fatigue is hard to explain unless you have it,” she told in a media interview The New York Times in 2011 of her struggle with Sjogren’s syndrome. “Some mornings I feel really sick, like when you don’t get a lot of sleep or you have the flu or cold. I always have some level of tiredness. And the more I tried to push through it, the tougher it got.”
A couple of years back, actress Swara Bhasker revealed in an Instagram story that she had to be on bed rest for 10 days because of a slipped disk problem. Not taking adequate rest, there are chances that she might need 8 weeks of bed rest after 2 weeks. This condition occurs when the soft centre of a spinal disc pushes through a crack in the tougher exterior casing of a vertebra. Though Some herniated discs cause no symptoms, Others can irritate nearby nerves and result in pain, numbness or weakness in an arm or leg. Not every disc needs intervention but some may need to be treated with medication, physiotherapy and possibly surgery.
Cast against Salman Khan in ‘Lucky — No Time For Love’ (2005), she was called Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s look alike. But she disappeared from the industry as she was diagnosed with an auto-immune disorder.
“It’s a blood-related illness where my own immune system kept me unwell”, she said. “My body would become so weak that I would not be able to stand on my feet for more than 30 to 40 minutes and because I kept shooting for films even with this illness, it got worse. Beyond a point, I didn’t have the strength to do what an actress is expected to do — running around, dancing and continuous shooting etc. That’s when I had to stop and start my medication, because there was no point in doing films and then falling sick every other day.
Lisa Ray Cancer (Multiple Myeloma)
The famous actor and model, Lisa Ray was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2009, a rare cancer of plasma cells in the bone marrow. Lisa announced she was cancer-free in 2010 but not completely cured as disease is treatable but incurable. Bone pain, Bone weakness, Broken bones (fractures) are some symptoms of this disease amongst many others.
Samantha Polymorphous Light Eruption
Samantha, the popular actress down south, suffers from called PLE or Polymorphous Light Eruption in 2012. This is a skin condition called by sunlight wherein the person starts feeling very itchy and it leads to a lot of pain. This usually happens to those having fair skins. Symptoms of polymorphic light eruption. An itchy or burning rash appears within hours or up to 2 to 3 days after exposure to sunlight and lasts for 2 weeks. The rash usually appears on the parts of the skin exposed to sunlight, typically the head, neck, chest,and arms but disappears without leaving a scar.
Tasneem Akbari Kutubuddin has done her masters in Journalism & Communication and has worked as a senior journalist, editor and columnist for leading publications like The Logical Indian, Deccan Chronicle, Worldwide Media Corporation, The Bridge and Provoke.
With Infano, she hopes to create more awareness about women’s health issues. Suffering with Fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition, she has also been advocating for its awareness through media.