Fear enshrouded me and despair engulfed me, and much troubling is the fact that I fell sublimely silent at the sudden and prompt act of harassment. I would develop a sense of somberness and seriousness and my eyebrows rose in complete surprise, asking questions as to what I had done to him and why just he had cornered me in this labyrinth.
It was much of the thunder fallen unto me in the form of fear and depression caused by the principal of the school I studied in. Seven years now I had been a responsible student of ninth class when I was thirteen years old. I used to be punctual and keen on studying very much. Along with teachers and parents, most of my distinguished relatives admired me for my good qualities, and considered me a hardworking boy.
I usually remained silent and serene and could never complain against anybody of disgusting acts the men did under cover of their profession and reverence in the society. But in the end, emboldened by the environment I lived in, I decided and directed my heart: let’s what’s true speak that, let’s not put the reality in obscurity. As a result, I became worse to show the true face of the so-called society. People now thought me illiterate, ignorant and uncouth and what not, because I had a little respect for teachers and persons thought to be great respect. And I knew that I won’t be further given respect because the truth has got little punch to be heard; it’s impenetrable to confront the reality, yet I continued to both speak in the table discussions and write on social platforms.
Fortunately, I had at that time, before the incident took place, a tad knowledge of what used to happen in the schools in the vicinity. And what the young teachers with an intermediate earned from the disguised and unproductive colleges did there? Let alone the inexperienced young teachers, the most distinguished teachers appeared to be implicated in the sexual scandals with the students of their schools and who they used to tutor at home. And to this day, I can, undoubtedly and resolutely claim that most of the teachers in the schools are having sexual relationship with either the students or the female teachers thereof.
To our astonishment, I want to reveal the mystery that handsome male students are being sexually harassed, at times forcefully abused by these teachers under the auspices of the management and principal. And what’s of paramount concern is that students’ mouths are being shut. In this regard, I am a living example.
Keep in mind, it’s not so easy to have an access to the information and that everyone would be able to know the reality. But as of me, I have remained myself teacher for six months in a school where I came to witness inappropriate and malignant things, but are swept under the carpet. Many of my friends still teach in the schools for the reason that they are having sexual relationships; I myself am cognizant of their misdoings.
It was in the evening in February of 2009, because I used to take tuition in the evening time in the same school I studied in the morning, I reached there, following the same route and routine: walking along a straight road, then along a lane which directly leads towards the school which was at a no-more-than-one-kilo-metre distance. With the bag full of books I entered in the classroom, with intention to learn something new, and that day I grasped the way life is, and what the people are: the bloody vicious mouths in disguise. I knew that people pretending to be sincere and good are the worst of the worst ones; they are snakes in the grass.
I thought to myself whether it’s Sunday that day. Nobody was there. The school was solitary. Feeling lonely, I turned my feet towards the gate to get back, then suddenly entered the school gate was the teacher, the principal, my relative, my Papa’s close friend. I greeted him. In response, with an avuncular behaviour, he greeted me the same way and asked if had not been informed about the closing of the tuition that day.
I replied with no, wondering if something gravest had happened for holiday was unexpected that time. On that, he informed me that my teacher’s health all of a sudden had worsened and had refused to be able to come to tuition that day. On listening to that, I began walking towards gate to go home. But I got stopped when he asked me to wait in that he would join me towards home.
In the waiting for ten to fifteen minutes I felt insecure and got up to move saying to him that I had got some urgent work; I had to go. But his smarmy behaviour with asking for two minutes more stopped me, and I thought I was, perhaps, wrong and would mistake deeming that he was making eyes at me. And so, I sat calmly.
What I doubted morphed into reality, the reality which was impenetrable to be borne; I almost slid into epilepsy. He sat beside me and within no time, propositioned me which was more than a perturbing situation for me to confront with. In an instant response I quickly refused with my voice trailing off. I got up and start going. With again making lurid remarks at me, he grabbed my hand and touched me inappropriately. This time with much fury I spat venom but to no avail.
It was a moment of absolute despair; I turned pale. I was left with only option that was to cry out loud so as to be heard and spared. But much of what I was afraid of what people would think if they see me in this position; they would question; some might blame me; others might make fun of me; still others might insult me giving sarcastic comments. On the horns of the dilemma, It was the matter of utmost concern to know whether to cry or laugh. Blessed by nature, I preferred screaming out to what’s going to happen, and to what has not happened yet. And I wished to Heaven I’d be helped out.
Before I reconsidered to scream out in fear I sought to threaten him bewaring him of the ramifications that he had to bear later. And that was what rendered him scared, but still he had assumed control of my body. Just as I noticed him with an outbreak of fear I uttered a cry which resulted in my favour. He let me loose and I bursted into making a beeline for my home. With instant pace, I reached the home safely, and it was so much instant and out of terror as I hadn’t taken notice of the speed and shivering I walked with. I had never plunged into ordeal of its ilk before.
Two to three days passed. The feelings of gloom and depression bursted onto my face; I was in a great trouble. And this was attributable to pondering why that kind of brutal and illicit act occurred to me, and what then would be done to get inner satisfaction. Day after day, the memory crowded my mind, propelling me into burst of cries.
In an attempt to release my pent-up feelings of despair and hatred at our contemporary society, the society where even students’ safety is at risk and respect violated at the hands of teachers, I dared share it with my friends; many of who would react with hilarious, sarcastic and belittling statements, as estimated. However, they had in mind that it was a horrendous act which definitely had prejudiced me, which they took it serious to a little extent. They stood by me saying that it was a bold step I had taken to inform them. They sympathized with me underscoring that not only I was affected but the cases of sexual harassment and molestation in the country are reaching epidemic proportions.
It is the surprisingly terrible move by scourges of such crimes to prevail the anxiety and throw the youth into a state of turmoil. The youth like me cannot grow in efficiency given the pressure, mental trauma, and torture, and much of what they are criticized time and again for the immoral acts they themselves never indulge in. Their cognitive approach grinds to a halt when discouraged and demeaned by the people in their immediate surroundings.
As I underwent the victimization, I knew of the tortures being faced by the poor victims like me. It’s, most importantly, an issue to be confronted with an iron hand. And for that, I asked myself as to whether there’s one who would stand steadfast in grit to eliminate this or everybody at the hands of those leveraging injustice would come silent and be blackmailed, and again and again be harassed. Thoughts haunted my mind; and decision was painstaking and imperative. The dilemma was my choice in between my screaming for all life or that for once. And I took the latter and saved myself from demons that would later have generated scary voices within me at my being silent.
Note: This piece of write-up is interpreted verbatim and identity of the victim on his request is concealed in order to thwart his character assassination.