International Men’s Day: All India Men’s Welfare Association (AIMWA) celebrates occasion in Bangalore
19 November 2009
BANGALORE: There are days to celebrate women, children, father, mother and a million other things. Until recently, the idea of raising a toast to men on a particular day was not high on anybody’s agenda. That is, until former USSR President Mikhail Gorbachev came up with the idea of celebrating ‘being men’ in 1999, an idea supported by the UN. Since then, International Men’s Day is celebrated on November 19.
The All India Men’s Welfare Association (AIMWA) it appears, has a series of grouses to be addressed by society at large: that men have always been portrayed as the tough sex, and so boys are trained to hide their emotions; men are treated as ATMs and ‘sperm donors’ and are thus exploited, the world persistently asks women what their problems are, but doesn’t bother about men….
Ever since Independence, women have been mollycoddled by ministries and commissions, but none have been instituted for poor Adam. Statistics have it that a man commits suicide every nine minutes, double the ratio of women ending their lives, worldwide – which shows that they have reached the end of their tether. It is these issues that AIMWA will address, say men’s activists.
Demand father’s rights
It also has more serious issues on hand: the taxation disparity and unfavourable custodian rights of fathers. Vivek Deveshwar, counsellor and founder-member of AIWMA, said: “Most fathers are deprived of custody of their children and only mothers get the right. Even after that, mothers feel insecure and snatch visitation rights from men. Where is the justice? There is not even a quasi-constitutional body to hear our problems and protect us.”