`First analyse, assess impact of quota in gram sabhas, panchayats and local bodies’
Yogi Adityanath’s worldview on women -many of whom backed the BJP in the recent election -makes for interesting reading. He believes women need male protection from birth to death and their `energypower’ should be regulated or controlled, lest it become worthless and destructive.Only controlled woman power will foster the birth and rearing of great men, he has said in essays available on his website (http:www.yogiadityanath.in) and mostly dated 2014.Arguing against women’s reservation, he said it must first be analysed how much quotas in gram sabhas and local bodies were impacting their primary role as mothers and wives. He also issues dire warnings about western notions of feminism that could threaten India’s social order. Women are said to have played a key role in determining the election results in UP .Not only did more women vote than men in the seven-phase UP election, but they widened their lead over them by a good 4%. It is even speculated that Muslim women may have voted in favour of BJP over the triple talaq issue.
In his essay, Matrashakti -Bharatiya Shakti ke Sandarbh Mein, he says: “Whereas in our shastras, the greatness of women has been described, at the same time considering their importance and their decorum and dignity , the need to give them protection is also mentioned.“ “Just like if you leave energy free and uncontrolled and unregulated, it may become useless and destructive, similarly `shakti swaroopa stree’-woman as the epitome of power -does not really need freedom, but a meaningful role with protection and channelisation.“
He adds the shastras say that a woman is protected in her childhood by her father, by her husband in her youth and by her son in her old age -so that way a woman is not capable of being left free or independent. “Is prakaar stree sarvatha swatantra ya mukt chhodne yogya nahi hai.“ “That she must not be left free does not imply slavery or subordination (paradheenta) but it is about controlling and channelising her energypower. For only such controlled and protected women power will give birth to and raise great men and when required step out of home to the battlefield to destroy evil powers,“ the essay goes on to say .
While acknowledging that women are faced with discrimination despite their active role in society and also in the freedom struggle, Adityanath says women must be given their due place and educated and given opportunity , lest the western notion of feminism takes over.
“Else the thoughtless storm of women freedom of the western world will drive them to an even more disastrous condition and it will hamper the creation and stability of the home and family and prevent the glorious rebuilding of the nation and motherland,“ he says.
While fully supporting increasing participation of women in all walks of life and acknowledging there is need to do much more, especially in rural areas, Adityanath believes women’s reservation may create a new social divide. He had even defied the BJP line on the issue in Parliament. He argues that women are increasingly getting active in all aspects and this is happening naturally so there may be no need to accelerate it recklessly. His core argument against it, however, is that such a step may impact the role of women in the family structure. “Women do already have reservations in many areas. First analyse and assess the impact of this in gram sabhas, panchayats and local bodies. Assess and then decide whether women who are in active politics, and public life like men, whether in this process they may not lose their importance and role as mothers, daughter and sisters,“ according to the Mahant of the Gorakhpur Mutt. “What has been witnessed so far is not very encouraging. However, as an experiment it is necessary to let it run. Only when the success of this is established, should a move be made for reservations for women in Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabhas and then why stop at 33% -it should be in proportion to their population,“ he says.
The yogi also warns of the inherent dangers in making women like men. He quotes texts to say: “If men acquire women-like qualities, they become gods but when women acquire men like qualities, they become (`rakshasa’) demon like.Serious thought must be given to these issues. What if this leads to the creation of the Frankenstien’s monster (Chale they ganesh banane, ban gaye vaanar).“