The media is going to town with reports about how Rahul Mahajan, son of Pramod Mahajan, who was murdered by his brother, is an abusive husband. He married Shweta Singh, his friend of 12 years, in August and we were bombarded with titbits and pictures of the couple together with interviews about the smallest detail.
Few made a mention of the timing – it had not even been a year since the senior Mahajan’s death and Rahul’s own stint in prison. No one said this seemed like a political move for Rahul’s entry into politics. What the couple wore, how the ceremony was conducted, how many people attended, what they ate, where the two would go for their honeymoon was dutifully reported.
Now a tabloid has shown pictures of Shweta with a bruise on her arm and a quote saying she was beaten up by her husband. Immediately there are denials, as they are wont to be.
I’d like to know what the heck is going on. Is this responsible journalism or a case of a kangaroo court? There are serious discussions taking place, including the fact that Shweta, her father and Rahul have all given different versions about the bruises. At last we have investigative journalism from the sleeping giants!
As someone who does not care much about Rahul and whatever he stands for, I still feel that the incident is being take advantage of. If it is false, then it is being used by political rivals, within and outside the party or by someone who does not like the couple being together or even by Shweta, who may have other issues and has used the bruise.
If it is true, then it is being used by friends who want to show up the sham for what it is, or by political rivals again.
In both cases, newspapers and TV are utilising it to the fullest. They have a peg on which to start discussing the Act Against Domestic Violence that has got into some controversy.
Personally, I find it sickening that the media is allowing itself to be used and as a result exploiting the situation. Domestic violence is a serious issue and we do not need celebrities, that too those with little credence, to bring home the point. It negates all that women go through from all strata of society.
Besides, the physical abuse, the emotional and mental abuse can completely make a woman lose all confidence and belief in herself.
And men find ways to make that happen, sometimes subtly. The more sophisticated the method, the greater the internal wound.
I would suggest that the media stay away. This isn’t a case of vigilantism on their part, but opportunism. In the process Rahul Mahajan will get back in the public eye, the other case against him will be pushed to the background. Notoriety has great value in contemporary society. Let us not make stars out of bad boys.
Perhaps then we may have a world where they grow up to become men.