The foot-in-the-mouth virus makes a post-monsoon comeback with Smt.Maneka Gandhi showing clarity of confusion with her “Paternity leave will be just a holiday for men” statement while speaking about the Maternity Benefit Bill. http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/paternity-leave-will-be-just-a-holiday-for-men-says-maneka-gandhi-2993274/
Although said with sarcasm, the Women and Child Development Minister unintentionally admitted that men work harder than women and therefore “men do not even avail their existing leave entitlements to share the responsibility of child care”. A little indulgence of forethought required of any deserving Minister would have revealed to her that men in India cannot afford to take leave from work since it is mostly men who take on the responsibility of maintaining the family financially. How else can we explain the existence of multiple maintenance provisions only against men?
The confusion gets a little worse if we consider the fact that women’s rights advocates actually lament the absence of care of pregnant women by the husbands and can even be termed as domestic violence by way of negligence. Damned if you ‘leave’ it and damned if you dont.
However, for all intents and purposes it is not the mandate or duty or right of any WCD Minster to discuss the welfare or affairs of men even though ministers get elected on the basis of mixed gender votes and use the taxes which are almost completely paid by men.
It seems that the WCD Minister is the one who definitely has taken a holiday from sensibility, therefore we pray to the WCD Minister to take an unpaid leave of absence and reset her misandry index back to zero. I say unpaid because most of the taxes are paid by men who work and earn by not taking leave.
On the bright side it is a welcome change for WCD to be finally talking of ‘safeguards’ and ‘misuse’ of provisions of the Maternity Benefit Bill by women. Thats a start!