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Father's Day

Father's Day

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Published by anugulmohar
Indian fathers are fighting against biased laws that make it very difficult for them to win custody of their children
Indian fathers are fighting against biased laws that make it very difficult for them to win custody of their children

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Published by: anugulmohar on Jun 29, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Dads in distress pick up a fight!
A hundred years after Father’s Day was commemorated, fathers in India are still pitted against rigid ancient laws and struggling for equal right over their children...
they cannot communicate with their children and convey to them that they haven’t abandoned them; that it is because of circumstances that they’ve been separated,” shared Uma Challa, President of AIMWA. “It is almost impossible for Indian fathers to get custody of their children,” said Satya Kumar, Founder of 498a.org. “The Hindu Marriage Act is of 1955. The laws are very ancient. When the laws were written, only 1% of the women worked while now about 25% work. Kids in the custody of working mothers are no better taken care of than kids living with fathers. The mindset of people needs to change. There should not be women’s right and men’s right but the government should implement common family rights,” suggests Kumar. “Father’s day, Mother’s day or any other such day is just another opportunity to show your love for each other. At times, the occasion can present a chance to patch-up things, to clear the muck and start things afresh,” says Dr. Sanjay Chugh, Senior Consultant Psychiatrist. Perhaps that’s why one of the demands being made by AIMWA is that ‘when a person or couple approaches court for divorce, counselling of the parents by professional counsellors should be given first priority.’ This Father’s Day, let’s hope that it doesn’t take another hundred years for fathers to get their due. Anu Gulmohar


ome believe that greeting-card companies are responsible for bestowing random days with the titles of Father’s Day and Mother’s Day to boost sales. Nevertheless, people these days do play along and give an extratight hug to the person being honoured on the particular day. This month, fathers are enjoying their time under the spotlight, and they’ve come a long way since this day was actually established in 1910. June 20th marks the 100th anniversary of Father’s Day! A 100 years ago, listening to a pastor sermonise about mothers and the then newly-established Mother’s Day, Sonora Smart Dodd, who had been raised by her father – a Civil War veteran – after her mother expired, decided to institute a day to honour fathers too. Fathers then were mostly perceived as ‘lazy, sleazy and drunk’, and Sonora hoped to give a leg-up to their image. A hundred years later, Father’s Day does get much hype, though still not as much as Mother’s Day, and there are still several struggling to be acknowledged at par with the women of the families, and be given the same rights as the

mothers when it comes to their children… “My wife Anubha Deveshwar had filed for divorce and child custody case simultaneously in Bangalore Family Court on 12th Jun 2009. She was granted custody of my daughter Shreya, who was 4.5 years old at the time, solely on the basis of her allegations. The judge’s order said: ‘Considering the facts and circumstances of the case..’.; however, the order was granted ex-parte without giving me a hearing. So, the right words in judge’s order should have been ‘Considering only the allega-

tions made by petitioner…’” laments Vivek Deveshwar, a 38-year-old father from Bangalore. Vivek is one of the several people who joined the nation-wide protest organised by the All India Men’s Welfare Association (AIMWA) on 18th June and boycotted the Family Courts. Their grouse against the Family Courts is that it ‘blatantly discriminates against fathers, heartlessly separates them from and prevents their access to their own biological children.’ “So many fathers will be pining for their children on this day. They’re unable get over the fact that

25 june- 22 july 2010

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