India: Lord Rama Taken to Court for Mistreating His Wife Sita

Lord Rama

A lawyer in the Indian state of Bihar recently filed a complaint against Lord Rama for mistreating women, namely his wife Sita. The case was filed at the Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court in Sitamarhi district, where Thakur Chandan Kumar Singh asserted that the deity’s conduct through the Sanskrit epic Ramayana proves how he was wanting in the treatment of women. Singh cited Rama’s banishment of Sita to a life of exile in a forest without any logical reasoning to substantiate his claim.

“The Devi was exiled (given ‘vanvasa’) for no fault of hers. It was a hypocritical order from king Rama. How can a man become so cruel to his wife that he sends her off to live in a forest?” Singh said in his complaint.

According to Singh, this incident ought to be considered as a non-cognizable offence committed by Rama, who unnecessarily inconvenienced his wife several times through her life, as documented in the Ramayana.

“Lord Rama did not think for a single moment how a woman could live alone amid wild animals, including reptiles and mammals, in the forest,” said Singh.

As the complainant stressed that he did not intend to hurt any person’s religious sentiment, the CJM, Ram Bihari, decided to hear the matter on February 1, eventually quashing Singh’s complaint. Describing the petition as ‘beyond logic and facts’, Bihari ruled that Singh’s claims were both pointless and unsustainable. 

“The court observed that the matter was far from logic and not maintainable for initiating a case. Even no evidence was produced by the complainant before the bench,” court sources said.

In the meantime, three separate cases were registered against Singh for defaming Lord Rama. After admitting charges against Singh under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, Bihari transferred the matter to another court the following day.

Singh, 31, condemned Bihari’s ruling, saying Sita was beyond all doubt a victim of domestic violence.

“All I wanted from the court was justice for Goddess Sita who spent 14 years with Lord Rama in the forest during the period of vanvas. It was Rama who was asked to go on vanvas by his father Dashratha yet Sita agreed to join him. Still Ram treated her so shabbily, and this hurts me a lot. Sita hailed from Mithila and I, too, am from Mithila. It is natural that I have a soft corner for her,” said Singh.

Singh said that his petition should not have been quashed as the issue merits a raging debate concerning the rights of women in India.

“Had Sita been delivered justice, the cases of domestic violence would have drastically come down in the country as nobody would have dared to maltreat his wife. … Justice to Sita would have meant justice to the entire women class, and not only this particular epic character.”

Singh elucidated that the persecution of women can be traced back to Treta Yuga, which was the same time during which Lord Rama is believed to have reigned over Ayodhya. According to Hindu mythology, women in Kal Yuga (the current phase) would be assured social justice only if they ensured the same for their predecessors from Treta Yuga.

Photo Credits: DNA India

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