Thursday, October 2, 2014

Swacha Bharat Abhiyan

Indian women are very talented. We are good at many things including making our marriages last long, even the unhappy ones. But one particular talent is controlling urge to relieve ourselves! Indian men are rather lucky in this aspect, they can relieve themselves anywhere, right in the middle of a busy market, on crowded roads practically anywhere. All they need is a short wall or perhaps even a tree stump. But we are not so privilaged. Before the advent of  all the malls out there we went shopping to markets say like Chickpet, Malleshwaram, Gandhibazar in Bangalore or say Chandni Chowk, Sarojini Nagar, Lajpath Nagar in Delhi. I do not ever remember using a toilet or for that matter relieving myself ever while shopping, even if we shopped the entire day which we mostly did. For that matter I do not remember any of my family member or my girl friends I went shopping did. Pee at home, shop and get back home to pee. What an amazing talent indeed. No one speaks about it but for most women it is just part of life, something like breathing.

I did not quite realize this till my solo journey on Karnataka Express when I went away to the university. Karnataka express used to be a 42 hour long journey from Bangalore to Delhi. Starting at Bangalore around 6 PM, the train used to lumber on via Hyderabad Karnataka, Maharastra, MP , UP and finally reach Delhi around noon the third day. To make things worse, the train was seldom on time. So when the train started in Bangalore, things would be clean. The bathrooms usable, there would be water in the toilets and sink and hawkers would sell something called paper-soap. It was a rather smart idea, strips of paper coated with soap which would work lather with a dash of water and the paper that was left over was to be trashed. Smart  indigenous idea indeed. I loved them.
The second day early morning, things would still be ok. But I figured out in my first few trips that it was good idea to wash up at day break else it could get crowded and of course dirty.  But the end of the second day water could be scarce. That is when the problem started. Also by then our people in the train would have used the toilets umpteen times and would find it either dirty or lazy or simply ignorant perhaps to flush and the people sitting close to the toilets would have to endure the stench for the rest of their journey. Water which would disappear by then would just make it worse.

So that is where my talent helped me. During the entire course of 42 hours, I would have used to toilets a couple of times, three times at the max. To avoid having to use the bathrooms, I did be preparing from day 0 of the journey. Eating little, and eating foods that were easy on the stomach. One day 1 of the journey, again eat little and avoid foods that made you go.  Through out the journey, I would eat very little, drink very little water and sleep most of the time typically on the upper most berth. A strategy that helped a lone young south Indian girl traveling into the unkind Northern plains as much as help me avoid using the toilets.

So much of strategy to just travel! But I guess most of us did that. We, as women had our own ways of coping up with the system that imposed invisible constraints, so much so that it was the norm for us. When I came to the States, one of the first things I noticed was how ubiquitous public toilets were and most of the time they were usable and had water. Women here probably do not even realize how easy their lives are, or to see it in a different way, women here most likely do not have this particular talent that we have.

This particular talent has been nurtured by generations in the past. No wonder we are so good at it. Perhaps our great-grandmothers were much better than us in this respect. In my family from what I have heard from my older family members, my great grandfather (a prosperous civil servant) had a big house which survives even today albeit as five portions with four different tenants and an uncle living there. The big house has one bathroom with a big wood fire Handi to heat water but no toilets. The men obviously in those days too had no problems. They would relieve themselves when ever they felt like. But women folk of the family had to wait for the cover of darkness to go to the near by fields to relieve themselves. I shudder to think of how they could have been waiting all the way from dusk to dawn to relieve themselves and then they had to walk in the dark on unpaved paths into the fields. I wonder if they ever encountered snakes, scorpions and other scary reptiles or if they ever encountered other wild animals which were ample those days like leopard, hyena and wolves and may be tigers. What if they did? Was it just a 'normal' thing for them? Were they ever scared? they might have their own strategies to cope up with such dangers. What ever they did, they outdid us in this particular talent!

To this day, there are so many homes in India without a toilet. They simply do not see the need for it perhaps because being a male centric society that it is, when men do not find it a problem to relive themselves in public there is no obvious need. Women just learn to live with the constraint. So there is no obvious need to have toilet at home or for that matter in public places like busy markets. If Indian men were a little more conscious and had the habit of relieving themselves only in toilets, I bet there would have been a lot many more toilets than what we see today. Just like they say there in the States the if men were to have babies, paid maternity leaves would have been long. It is just that since the burden of not having toilets is borne entire by women without complaints we see fewer toilets. We learn to hold our pee instead of demanding for toilets.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Loksabha 2014 Part 1

Phew! finally one of the most expensive affairs of democracy in the world has come to an end.  We should thank our stars that we have a clear winner and there will be no more 'compulsions of coalition'  sucking our blood.

For things that I noticed this election.

  1. The bitterness in the political campaign was unprecedented. Never was the bitterness against political opponents so very much in open. Name calling, mud slinging, one up-men-ship, sheer stupidity and George-Bush like 'you are with me or against me' water tight compartmentalization of opinions. We all know politics is the last game of a scoundrel but this is the nadir of being scoundrels. Was it so ugly because the top-dog was not a part of the elite either in terms of power circles like the Gandhis, V.P.Singh and Charan Singh or in terms of  better education and chance at life like P.V.N and Chandrashekhar.
  2. B.J.P is accused to being the force behind polarizing the electorate, but to think of it, Polarization has two faces those who were for Modi, the ones cultivated by B.J.P and then those who were against, cultivated by everybody else. Well heights of polarization and intolerance was when I saw a 'liberal' person threatening to un-friend those who 'like' Narendra Modi's page on Facebook. So those who were fighting for the cause of tolerance and 'secularism' were not tolerant enough to accept their friends for having a different like of thought.
  3. 'It is the Economy, Stupid!'... How Congress can be so very clueless as to what is driving the Modi phenomenon? Being a grand old political party with so many wise brains at its disposal, how could they not get it? Congress party looks locked in a shell. They thought giving our people rights is the best they could to,  right to marriage, right to reading, right to urinate in public, right to eat, right to god knows what... at the end of the day it all boils down to the tangible gains people saw. 'Rights? ok, what is in there for me? My life is no different from before. The rights have not given me better roads, better education, better chance at life...Give me more.'  We all know that doles and subsidies are never enjoyed by those who are supposed to on paper. Even if the right to food, employment and everything else is supposed to deliver goodies to those deserving on paper, how much of it really reaches the real beneficiaries?
  4. Congress has something way too elitist about their thinking. They seem to say, 'oh! you poor people, let us feed you as long as I an available, and yes, because you are poor you should not aspire for anything else. Get your free square meal and do not ask for MORE'.  Don't they know that, giving a fish to a person will feed her one day and teaching her to fish will feed her and her family for a life time? How many people, even the poorest want just food? probably no one. Every body wants more than just food. People want better life, for themselves and their children. Why else do we see poor parents moving heaven and earth, at the cost of loosing most of their merge possessions, send their children to the best schools they can afford and to colleges too? Have we not seen such people around us, our poorer cousins, our maids, our Dhobis, our vegetable vendors almost every one... So why do they do it at all? Because they hope education will lead their children to a better life they themselves can never hope for. Education enables good life. Period. So it is 'fishing' more than fish it self that people are demanding. They are demanding opportunities and an enabling atmosphere which is conducive for meritocratic rise of their children. We demand for good education, good medical-healthcare facilities and we demand for infrastructure. Simple. That should have been the focus.
  5. Meritocracy! Most parties this time fielded sons and daughters of known political faces. If we accept doctor kids becoming doctors, or movie stars kids choosing acting career why not politicians grooming their kids in politics? Well the answer is still 'No'. No other profession has the kind of clout and power like Politics and no where is the bar so low as Politics either. What riles me as a common born with no famous surname is the unfair advantage the kids with famous surname have over me. Not because they are cleverer than me, or even more competent then me but because of they have a famous surname. A famous surname is good enough for a career in politics. Especially if you are a Gandhi, Congress party behaves like your bonded labor. Priyanka Gandhi who is officially a no one in the party screams out that her cousin has gone 'astray', that some one dishonored her 'martyred father' and that response from every booth in Amethi will come in full force to avenge for the dishonor of his 'martyred father'. Indeed we saw that on the day of counting when her poor brother was trailing behind his opponent for a while and then his victory margin reduced to just half of what it was last time. What is so great about the Gandhis any way? Unfortunately the only message the rise of Rahul and Priyanka sent out was that no one can aspire for the top post in Congress because it is the birth right of either of the two. It is not a coincidence that they have all but disowned P.V.Narashimharao, the man who steered the ship in its most fragile time and they have dishonored Dr.Manmohan Singh like nothing seen in history.
  6. Rahul Gandhi factor. After his disastrous interview all I could see in Rahul Gandhi were his cute dimples as he stood grinning while his mother somberly spoke of the parties election rout and accepted the moral responsibility. Does he evoke any emotion in me? yes I think he is kind of cute, he is rich, privilaged, rather spoilt and he gets to do what ever he wants without ever having to answer anyone. But at 40+ years and 10 long years in politics is a long time enough even for a late bloomer to learn the ropes of the trade. With the kind of support, shelter and resources at his disposal, he still looks like lost-last bencher in school who is constantly staring out of the window and waiting for the bell to ring. Nothing in him, or nothing he has to say rings with you. Sorry this is not 1984, good looks and a Gandhi surname are not qualifications enough to become a leader of aspirational India.I heard some one say the other day that the fear of Narendra Modi lead Muslims to consolidate against his strongest opponent but the fear of Rahul Gandhi becoming the next PM consolidated the votes of all those who had ever seen his famous interview in favor of Modi!
  7. The rise of the Mango people! Indeed this is an election of 'Aam Admi'. At the center of the election was a very 'Aam'-common man, a man with no privilaged upbringing, no money, no famous surname, no English convent education, but who was cleaver enough to make the most of the opportunities he got on his way to the top. Yes Modi might not be the perfect leader but no one take it away from him that despite his humble background he was smart enough to make it to the top. We middle class admire people like him, the meritocratic rises to the top, the reason why N.R.N, A.P.J, Sir.M.V,  are middle class icons. AAP too made a splash, though a disappointing one. AAP was a real democratization of Politics, it attracted a lot of young, energetic, disenchanted  who would otherwise look at politics with a lot of disdain into active political participation. Many contested, many worked as volunteers and many walked up the the booths to cast their votes. But it is not Kejriwal represented AAP for me. If he did, it would be sad. Kejriwal is too pedestrian to be a leader, his constant pop-economics rant of Black Money- Swiss Banks, selling petrol at Rs38 and "Media being sold out" only made him look like a bitter anarchist. He did not come across as the leader with a plan for the country but an opportunist cribbing about one thing and everything.  If AAP achieved something this elections, it is despite Kejriwal. In Punjab they were successful because they chose the right candidates to represent them.They stuck to their plank of clean and corruption free politics. That should have been the plank of AAP everywhere. With Kejriwal voicing for and against everything he had heard and being the new maker he is, he diluted the message of the party and what they stood for. Sadly this was not AAP's election. This was clearly Narendra Modi's election. But as we saw in Punjab, if Narendra Modi were to fail to deliver, next election might as well be AAP's.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Ordinance on Convicted Lawmakers

Gandhiji and B.R.Ambedkar will definitely  be rolling in their graves.  They probably would even be sorry for what they did, for it is going to be hard for them to see their beloved people where we are today! Imagine Nehru speaking to Gandhi about an ordinance that that protects convicted lawmakers from being immediately disqualified. May be in those days it would have still made sense, after all there were many freedom fighters convicted for political reasons. I wonder how would Ambedkar and his constitution drafting committee react to this development. I bet they did not in their wildest dream think of a scenario like this one. They were after all men of honor and despite their best efforts could not envisage a scenario of our democracy being hijacked by dishonorable men at whose helm is a man I esteemed so much, a person who was supposed to be one of the best brains in my profession! Sorry Dr.Singh this is indeed the last nail in the coffin. 
It is not surprising that politics is the last refuge of a scoundrel, but it is indeed surprising that they have become shameless and blatantly so. Despite being greedy, power hungry and all that they were, there were some ethics, a unspoken code of conduct, a certain dignity and respect towards the electorate. After all they needed us twice every decade, sometimes  even more than that!
Surprisingly, it is out right stupid.  They could have done it intelligently by introduced a bill, there could have been  a  pretense of a debate in the parliament, a guise of functional democracy.  No! they want to take the shortest and quickest route even if it meant circumventing the democratic process, and of course disregarding our esteemed supreme  court.  This is a stupid move because you do not shoot yourself in the foot during an election year, not to forget anti-incumbency and  a formidable opponent with a strong track-record.  It is a wonder that Congress forgot that there are educated and urban voters who are can see through vote-bank politics who will definitely be upset by such open disrespect to the electorate.  
No wonder the Gen-Z  leaders in the Congress party are openly criticizing the ordinance. Kudoos to Rahul Gandhi , Milind Deora for calling a spade a spade. Not that they are always on the ‘right’ side, but this time they are. For once Rahul Gandhi said something I whole heartedly agree. This ordinance is utter nonsense. Thanks Rahul for bringing legitimacy (you can do that, thanks to your parentage)to a point of view so diverse from the leaders in your party. Thanks Rahul for making us the Aaam Janta feel a little less despised. Thanks Rahul for making us, voters feel a little more than just  votebank=function(caste, religion,(money+bottle)).

Monday, September 16, 2013

Masala Dosa and the purchasing power of rupee.

The other day I watched a Kannada movie called ‘Super’ by Upendra. Like all Upendra movies, the movie had a few feel good, a few thought worthy elements but on the whole it was stung into a very gaudy but blotchy story piece. The element that connect this piece to the movie is the exchange rate of a Rupee! In that movie a Rupee is equivalent to $100! Wow. So the film makers aspire for Rupee to become so expensive. May be it an aspirational factor, maybe there are a lot of us who think it is desirable to have an expensive Rupee. What does that really mean in the context of recent depreciation of Rupee?
To begin with let us think in terms of Masala Dosa. I say Masala Dosa, because that is one of the first things I buy as an expat on a pilgrimage home! In 2007, the price of a Masala Dosa in say a typical Darshini in Bangalore would cost about  INR 15. As given in the table below, in terms of Dollar one Masala Dosa cost $0.41. In 2009, my next subsequent trip to India, I found that the same Masala Dosa cost about INR 25 or about $0.61. Currently the same Masala Dosa costs about INR 50 or about $0.94.
Purchasing power of Rupee in terms of a Masala Dosa
$1 = INR
Cost of Masala Dosa
Cost of Masala Dosa
INR 15
₵ 41
INR 25
₵ 61
INR 50
₵ 79
Annual inflation

27% (INR terms)
18% ($ terms)
Annual Depreciation

One Masala Dosa should approach $0.81 at the depreciation rate of 12%

At the same time, Rupee has depreciated about 12 % per annum(roughly, it is never a straight line process, there were lots of ups and downs, but roughly the trend) from about INR 37 for a dollar to about INR 63 right now.  So if we adjust the price of Masala Dosa in terms of depreciation, we will see that it should approach $0.81. Which indeed it did, at current rate it is about $0.79. So  thinking  of purchasing power of rupee in terms of a Masala Dosa, currently rupee is fairly valued after all.
Sorry Upendra, INR 1 approaching $100 still appears a distant dream, definitely when inflation in India is what it is and fiscal deficit is what it is.
The depreciation of rupee is not to be interpreted as a bleak development  either. On the one hand imports become more expensive, so hopefully Indians buy a lot less of gold, a lot less of the flimsy toys made in China, and petrol (may be rely a lot more on public transportation). On the other hand our exports will become competitive in the global markets because everything in global markets are denominated in Dollars. Hopefully our exporters will find more buyers and earn more Dollars improving our balance sheet. Over a period of time, if fiscal and monetary policies are healthy, and the central government is sane, we can hopefully see a time when  inflation and also Rupee will experience some degree of stability.

Friday, December 28, 2012

RIP brave girl...

Finally the girl who was brutalized on a moving bus bid his final  farewell, she was tired and done.  Rest in peace brave sister....You were not the first to go this way or the last given the disproportionately heavy burden of crime that women face.

Of course we are stupid enough to elect and make leaders of people, not even competent to understand what they are saying. Apparently some great politician a few years ago complained about women wearing modern dresses and sending out an invitation to be raped! It was absurd and just went on the state how sick the  guy capable of making that statement. That was not the end, but the beginning.

 "Women should know how much skin they should cover.”- Karnataka's Women & Child Welfare minister C. C. Patil

OK let us discount some minor politician, but if well educated, apparently enlightened bureaucrats say  things like ....
   '“fashionable clothing,” like the salwar kameez is leading to number of rapes' Dinesh Reddy-Andhra Pradesh DGP know you are doomed and justice cannot be expected. 

Most so called leaders are just so paranoid about their position, that everything becomes a political conspiracy.  "rapes were a conspiracy to malign the government." Mr Phool Chand Mulana Haryana Congress President. Looks like he took a leaf off Ms Mamatha Banerjee's stance in one such case in Kolkota. She went a step ahead transferring a rare police officer who managed to nab the culprits.

And  then there is more,  women politicians who can brand a rape victim a prostitute.

"They (the Park Street rape and Delhi gang rape) are totally different. The incident at Park Street was not a rape at all. It was a misunderstanding between two parties involved in professional dealing — a woman and her client," Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar, MP

God forbid, after going through such  violation, a women should also suffer from character assassination? No wonder, most such crimes go unreported. After all cops are not only slack doing their job, but can become predators themselves.

"Maan Singh, a senior sub inspector (SSI) posted at Akbarpur police station in Ambedkar Nagar, was arrested on December 14 from a hotel in Faizabad by SSP D S Yadav. The arrest came after the SSP was informed that the cop had brought the gang-rape victim from Ambedkar Nagar to the hotel and was raping her. The victim was rescued from the room after the cop was caught with his pants down. Now the rape victim has alleged that in-charge of the Akbarpur Kotwali, inspector AK Upadhyay, had also raped her." from the Times of India.

This is definitely not the last straw.

So it is not enough that women are unfortunate to go through such violation, they have to put up with more cognition-handicapped politicians who are brave enough to say "I don't feel any hesitation in saying that 90 per cent of the girls want to have sex intentionally but they don't know that they would be gang raped further as they find some lusty and pervasive people in the way ahead." Dharambit Goyat Haryana Congress spokesperson

No leader worth  his or her salt has come down on the crime, either by putting forward relevant legislation  or by taking to task the responsible officers. On the contrary, the suggestions we have been getting include avoiding private buses at night.

"They should also think that they should not go in a private bus at night...We say we got freedom at midnight but doesn't mean we can roam free around at midnight." Botsa Satyanarayana

As if 9.30 PM is midnight. What about women raped in cars, fields, homes and disgustingly enough in play-school..

If you are a women and if you are protesting against the lack of law and order and basic safety then you must be a "pretty pretty women, highly dented and painted" according to Mr.Abhijit Mukherjee, son of honorable president of India.

Then the home minister will brand you a Maoist. You cry for help and you are called a militant?  "It is very easy to ask the Home Minister to go to India Gate and talk. Tomorrow Maoists may come here to demonstrate with weapons" Sushil Kumar Shinde Home Minister.

Is India even a civil society?  I cannot think of any other term but BARBARIC.

Come on..there is more to it, the all powerful and all notorious Khaps of Haryana who sanction honor killings, get the first prize.

"The meeting aims at knowing the views of various khap panchayats about the issue of lowering the marriageable age to prevent rape incidents in the state. Representatives of around 100 khaps across the state will attend the meeting to share their opinion and to present their proposals on the issue," Sube Singh Samain, spokesperson of the Sarva Khap Jat Panchayat

Not only they have violated all the unspoken rules of a civilized society, they go further every time! This time they have outdone themselves, and everybody in the race to dubious distinction.

Congratulations you brutes and barbarians; It is not just Afghanistan that is lawless, India too is just as lawless.  Go pick up a girl walking home from school, or even a toddler playing the park, violate her and do what you want, you did still walk away scot-free. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

CA Prop 37

The conservatives are a strange bunch. They accept and promote the neoclassical thought saying that Americans should be ‘free to choose’. They should be ‘free to choose’ in economics, in what they want to produce and market. Same goes for gun control. Americans should be ‘free to choose’ if they want to own guns, even the kind police officers do not carry with them. American corporations are ‘free to choose’ what ever it takes to maximize profits including technology that can cause irreversible environmental damage, opposing the labeling of genetically modified food. 
Americans are ‘free to choose’ everything. Well when they say 'Americans' probably that automatically excludes the American women, the sexual minorities etc. The women are not ‘free to choose’ whether they want to carry on an unwanted pregnancy or not. Gay people are not ‘free to choose’ whom they want to marry. So much so that two people who are in love and want solemnize their relationship are not ‘free to choose’ the word ‘Marriage’ to define their relationship. Other ordinary Americans whose lives are affected because of apathetic pollution are ‘free to choose’ to pack up their bags and leave but are not ‘free’ to ask for damages. Are not these serious flaws in the thought? If ‘Americans are free to choose’ so should be American women, American queer community etc.
Thankfully they also thought that drafting goes against the tenet. So indeed Americans are ‘free to choose’ if they want to go and fight a war or not.
If I ask for labeling of genetically modified food, I will probably be branded a ‘tree hugger’, so I am not ‘free to choose’ what I want to eat. The corporations that sell me food whereas are ‘free to choose’ to feed what me what ever they can make a profit on.
CA please vote yes on the Prop 37, so that one day we are ’free to choose’ if we want to eat the GM garbage or not.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Arrange Marriage or Love Marriage

Heard a celebrity scholar comment on arranged marriages on the radio. He was of the opinion that arranged marriages are unworkable in our times. The forcefulness of his argument made me sit and  think. Are arranged marriages so bad? after all I have always loved love stories and of course love marriages are so exciting. But then marriages are not about love story.

Let us get to the advantages of arranged marriages:
  1. No dating pressure, peer pressure to have a girl/boy friend and will not have to keep looking for love if it does not happen.
  2. The whole processes of looking for a soul mate is out-sourced and elder family members will do it for you.
  3. People with absolutely no decision  making power will end up marrying. If not for arranged marriage, they would be single.
  4. 'Lemons'(not to be condescending to others. I respect everybody but then our society is prejudiced and I cannot deny it) -will eventually find partners. For example darker girls being married off even if it means a large dowry. (I am dark myself, and I am happy with my skin)
  5. Eventually there will be more couples and  procreation will go on. Not that our species is under the threat of extinction.
  6. Post marriage troubles are usually addressed by the elders.
  7. Fewer compatibility issues on the grounds on of food habits, language and so on
  8. Both the partners start with lower expectations. No love-rush before getting married and disappointment later on after the love-rush subsides.
Now for the disadvantage
  1. Arranged marriages are very expensive. The cost can be prohibitive and crush  people on the fringe under the load of debt.
  2. Everything goes for a price, and the natural bio-chemical attraction has no place in the market.
  3. Personality mismatch.

Now for the advantages of love marriages:
  1. You think you know your partner well enough and decide consciously to live together.
  2.  Pure bio-chemistry at play. Something inexplicable is driving the relationship and it must be strong enough to stand the test of time.
  3. The feeling of being in love is unbeatable. People go berserk when they feel they are in love.
  4. Love marriages unless taking the conventional wedding route can be very inexpensive.
  5. Children born out of love marriages are most likely to learn more languages.  They are also exposed to many more cultures and more likely to be more pluralistic.
The disadvantages of love marriages:
  1. Incredible amount of pressure to fall in love and find a partner and get married.
  2. Complete decision making on the individual. May be a lot of pressure.
  3. Pressure to find love might make people choose the wrong person.
  4. 'Lemons' might never be able to make it to the market.
  5. Courtship can be expensive, with movies and restaurant bills to foot
To see it in a way, arranged marriages are like command and control economies and love marriages are like free market.Just like the command and control economies, arranged marriages are planned and directed by some authority above. Just the execution is left for the individuals. The match is arranged, the date and venue everything is decided by the elders of the two families and the individuals might or might not have a say in all of  these. The  individuals just execute the plan given from above, get married and then procreate.

Whereas in the love marriage, individuals are free to choose whom they want to get married to and the way they get married to etc. They might want to have the wedding the way their parents desire but then the primary decision is all their own. That is, they decide what to do with their resource(life), and eventually execute it the way they want it. Just like free market.

So, if you are above average person (financial, looks,confidence etc) then try your luck in the free market. Free market rewards the 'haves' better than 'have-not'. And chances are that you will find a partner of choice and of course experience the love-rush that can beat the most thrilling of roller coaster. Otherwise arranged marriage might not be so bad.

The only take away from my  thought process is that an individual should as much have a choice of going for an arranged marriage as for love marriage. Just like no one should be stopped from marrying a person  they love (regardless of sex,colour, caste,creed) no one should be stopped from choosing arranged matches either. I  hate it when people stigmatize arranged marriages.  Not all arranged marriages are brutal and forced co-habitation of a city bred modern girl and a tribal from the Hindu Khush.