#Me Too – A Movement Against Sexual Assault And Sexual Harassment

This topic is very famous on the international as well as national footing. For dealing with the cases related to this, there are many acts and amendment is done by the government of India after the very famous incident in Delhi popularly known as “Delhi rape case”, the laws and rules relating to the protection of women is strengthened by the government, but this movement is started before this incident and this movement trackback form 2006 and started on the international footing. This movement marks its presence in 85 countries and it was started on the fastest and easiest way of communication i.e, social media.

Let’s discuss this movement from the beginning on international as well as national footing. This movement has a large variety of alternative names but commonly it is known as Me Too.  This movement was started against the sexual; harassment and sexual assault. Initially, this movement was started by Tarana Burke, an American social activist, and community organizer, began using the phrase “Me too” as early as 2006. In July 2016, a social media by Ukrainian journalist Anastasia Melnichenko went viral. Thousands of women and some men, in Russia and Ukraine, began posting their personal stories of sexual harassment and assault on social handles with#IAmNotAfraidToSpeak. After that phrase, it was later popularized by American actress Alyssa Milano, in Twitter in 2017. Milano encouraged victims of sexual harassment to tweet about it and give people a sense of the magnitude of the problems. The movement began to spread virally in October 2017 as a hashtag on social media in an attempt to demonstrate the widespread prevalence against Harvey Weinstein. Now begin with how this hashtag gets viral in India. This movement in India could be a demonstration of international #me too that’s presently happening in elements of Indian society as well as government, media and therefore the screenland movie industry. In India, this movement is influenced by the international campaign against sexual harassment against women in the workplace. In India, this movement chases fire in the entertainment industry, when actress Tanushree Dutta accused Nana Patekar of sexual harassment. This encourages other women to speak out and show the real faces of the men in the world. The impact of this me too movement is very huge on different sectors of the society. Many directors and actors from the film fraternity like Vikas Bhel, Nana Patekar, Alok Nath, Sajid Khan and many more give resignation or banned from the industry.  There are many powerful names from News and Media, Politics and Law, Education industry in this movement and their industries take strict against them.

This movement makes an impact on the career of some very famous men after the allegations made on them; they lose their respect, position and many more. This movement increases the courage in the women in the society to take a step against the sins of other people and protect the other women from the same situations in the future. When we study these cases which are reported under this movement then we notice one thing very clearly that most of the cases are old and they happen many years before but the women on that time have no courage to make a step for their own prestige. And in many cases the women took courage but our system does not take useful steps for the incidents. The police officers do not take action against those powerful people. They are afraid of them. In this movement the social Media help the women to raise their voices and the other women and men also stand with the victims, this creates a pressure on the system to work in a lawful manner and punish the offenders for their sins.  There are many cases in which the accused sue the victims for the payment of huge penalties under Defamation cases also.

This movement is also criticizing by many people and social groups on the national and international footing both. They criticize this movement in many aspects.  There is a very famous proverb that “there are two sides of every coin”. So, according to this proverb, every situation also has two sides. In simple words, we can say that there are always two ways of dealing with a situation. Some people have the opinion that this movement starts with a noble cause but it leads to disastrous ends. At the beginning of this movement, this hashtag works to provide justice form assault and harassment but there is some cases track which is just made to create a bad image of a famous person. According to the survey of U.S. Department of Justice and other organizations which estimate the number of false rape accusations to be around 2–10% but in a study by the UK Home Office on reported rape cases found that from a set of 216 rape cases later found to be false, only six led to arrests and only two involved charges being filed. These surveys indicate that some people use this movement just for publicity stands and for defaming the reputation of another person.

For showing that not only women but also men are also the victims of sexual harassment and assault, a new movement is started on the social media handle. This movement is commonly known as #Men too. The men always are not accused; they also have emotion and can also face these types of problems. In a country like India where the sexual harassment activities with women and the cases related to dowry deaths are so common, the people started thinking from a different angle. But the main point in this #me too movement is to protect the people from sexual assault and harassment. This movement is never a gender bias movement. This movement is started to protect every suffered person in the society and community. The #MeToo movement is all about victims of sexual harassment, using the social platform, to share their experiences publicly and leverage empathy, while expressing solidarity with other victims.  They have resorted to collective action which is preventive rather than being curative in nature. Launching parallel movements with similar objectives would be an exercise in futility. We all need to join hands and strengthen the existing #MeToo movement by broadening its scope, making it gender neutral and covering all cases of sexual harassment whether they are committed against men, women or transgender.

Dristy Gupta

Content Writer, Law Corner, BBA LLB, 4th Year, Jamnalal Bajaj School of legal studies, Banasthali Vidyapith, Tonk, Jaipur

Leave a Comment