Palash Krishna Mehrotra, author of the The Butterfly Generation, wrote a column for the India Today magazine on Dec. 1 which talked about what the country’s new rape laws mean for Indian men.
His column, titled “Men Under A State of Siege,” centered on the recent shocking rape allegations by a woman journalist against Tarun Tejpal, the founder-editor of Tehelka, one of India’s most respected news weeklies famous for its breakthrough investigative journalism.
Mehrotra wrote that India’s new rape laws, put in place after the horrific Delhi gang rape last year, are “draconian and full of grey areas.” He did not seem to think that ‘sexual overtures,’ ‘sexual favors,’ and ‘forcible disrobing’ constituted the definition of sexual harassment.
He also believed that it was unfair not to deem consent given under intoxication as informed consent under the new law.
“This means that a drunken consensual tumble with a woman can come back to haunt the man the next day, or even ten years later. This seems grossly unfair.”
He also felt that enlarging the definition of rape in India has led to men feeling they are under siege.
“Many Indian men admit privately that they feel they are under a state of siege. The bedroom has been criminalised. Is it going to be impossible to form relationships from now on? Have we as a society, yet again, swung from one extreme to another?”