Men’s Rights activists ask men to watch Kareena-Arjun Kapoor Starrer "Ki and Ka"

Kareena and Arjun Kapoor starred movie “Ki and Ka” by R.Balki is movie about freeing men from traditional gender roles and expectations. In this movie, Arjun Kapoor’s character Kabir refuses to work for his business tycoon father and instead he chooses to become a home maker, who loves to stay at home and take care of the house, while his wife (Kareena Kapoor) is an ambitious corporate woman.

While Arjun Kapoor’s character shines, challenges of jealousy and insecurity crop up for Kareena Kapoor’s character. This may upset some feminist types, who expected it to be a women oriented film. What the film explores instead is a dialogue and a discourse on changing gender roles, without tilting towards either men or women.

“It has great storyline and its deals with emotions of a man beautifully. Men must watch it as it helps them connect to their own selves and what they want in their life. Just like women, men should also have choice not to be home makers rather than being providers for wives. Time has come to explore this theme at a time, when women are allowed the choice of being fighter pilots. ” Says Anil Kumar, an expert of Men’s Issues and culture at Confidare India.

“In India, about 15% to 20% young men are interested in becoming  home makers today. However, society’s attitudes are stacked against them and even the most progressive working women are not ready to reconcile with the fact that their husbands may choose to become home makers.” Say Vivek Ganeshan of Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF).

“Men should not only watch the movie, they should also get their parents to watch it. This movie also highlights the important fact that a man or woman cannot do both job and house work, if they want to rise in corporate ladder. This may not be palatable for many, but corporate careers often demand 12 hours for work and commuting every day.” he says.

R.Balki’s effort should start a dialogue in the society about gender roles, stress at workplace and liberating men from traditional expectations of the society. This dialogue must also consider current laws related to marriage, which restrict men into sole bread winner role. The concept of gender equality is enshrined into our constitution and it has to be adhered to irrespective of which gender is on received end of inequality.

The laws related to marriage must accommodate the concept of men being home makers. When we talk about gender discrimination of women in army or in temples, we must also discuss about laws that restrict men and their choices. .” Says Rajesh Vakharia President  of Save Indian Family Foundation (SIFF).

At present our alimony laws presume man to be the sole bread winner for the family. Similarly, it is assumed that men cannot take care of children and hence men are even denied access to children during separation or divorce. Also, it is assumed that men can never be victims of domestic violence and hence there is no provision for protection of men from the same.

In 2014, a bill at parliament was rolled back, which proposed only husband’s property to be divided and given to wife during separation, while wife can keep her own property. We have to recognize that such gender biased policies and laws are hindering men from choosing to become home makers,” Says Rajesh Vakharia.

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