Alarming Incidence

Alarming Incidence

There has alarmingly been an increase in the incidence of domestic violence which can fall under the generic rubric of “domestic crime” in Kashmir. But, this statement needs a qualifier. It might not actually be a statistical increase in crimes of this nature. It might be that because of the proliferation of the media and its various forms, that crimes of this nature come into the public limelight. But, whatever be the case, the fact is there is an increase in crime in Kashmir. This is not only alarming but goes against the gravamen and nature of Kashmir and its people. The question is why? The reason(s) pertain to the fact that money has become a measure of most things in Kashmir. Generally speaking, money is and should be a means to an end. It is in the nature of a fungible commodity that facilitates commerce, trade and is a unit of account and transactions. But, unfortunately money has become an end in itself. When this becomes the case, values of a moral and an ethical nature take a back seat and even these become commoditized. The end result is either corruption or crimes of an assorted nature. One example is that of dowry and dowry related crimes. Some people view female folk as commercial commodities to be monetized for pecuniary gain. When these people enter into a marital union, they either seek a hefty dowry , either in cash or kind. When this is not forthcoming or is not to the satisfaction of the groom and his family, the bride or the daughter in law is subject to all forms and kinds of harassment. At times, this harassment takes a violent or even a fatal form. Usually, the hapless womenfolk that are trapped in these kinds of situations suffer in indignity and silence with nowhere to go. This is just to cite one instance of domestic crimes. While , to an extent, the redeeming factor is that there is media reportage of these crimes, but this does not address the issue in its fundamental essence, that is, of value degeneration. To reclaim these values and ethics, it is in the nature of an imperative to undertake a review and introspect. What will be revealed from this exercise is how far we have departed from our moral values and how warped our calculus has become. If nothing but this should concentrate our minds to become a crime free society.