"No bachelors please"
Oxford dictionary defines discrimination as
"The unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories of people"
Since we were kids we all have been reading about discrimination prevailing in the world. It took different forms through different times and ages. It was against the blacks in America, lower casts in India or the Jews in Europe and women all across the world. And in retrospect, this has always come to a bad end, where we eventually realize our mistakes and have to correct them.
You will see that discrimination still persists in our society but on a much smaller scale than before. I would attribute this to the rise in education levels and increase in sensitivity in people and rules put in place to ensure this does not happen.
As a child, I had always only read about different kinds of discrimination so never really got the concept. Well, unfortunately, I got a taste of what it feels like to be treated differently in the world in the last couple of years. I am not comparing my situation to either of those examples but just trying to explain what it feels like to be ripped off of your fundamental rights and not being able to do anything about it.
So I graduated BITS Goa in 2016. Yeah, let's all take a moment to appreciate Goa! Fresh out from the college with an engineering degree in hand, I set to start my career with a consulting firm in Bangalore.
So yeah I was a 22-year-old bachelorette starting my first job in Bangalore somewhat 2000kms south of my home. I started looking for an apartment to live in. Thankfully I did not have to struggle so much looking for an apartment. Well yeah, I was refused several apartments simply because I was an unmarried girl trying to find a house, oh what a crime. If you are a bachelor working in a metro city, you all would have definitely faced this problem. In fact, there is an entire series of videos by AIB explaining what I am trying to say here.
Another thing I realized is that if you are an unmarried working professional, people think your life is their personal jungle gym. They will impose rules on you which do not make sense at all and if you don't comply, woila you are on the road with your suitcase. Let me give you an example when I moved into my flat, I was given a list of the rules and regulations of the society and out of about 20 rules listed on the piece of paper, around 18 of them were for bachelors. They had rules stating things like we cannot have parties in the house, our guests cannot use the facilities provided by the society, and some even insisted that only authorized guests can enter the society. Not just this, my owner was an IAS officer, so you'd assume he is a well-educated person and he blatantly told us that we are not to bring our guy friends over as this is his house and not a brothel. I was appalled by this behavior but there was nothing I could do. This is not where the discrimination ends, the workers of the society know of your position and hence do not think it's important enough to pay you any respect at all. They are outright rude, completely un-cooperative and highly intrusive. And since you want a place to live, you put up with it. You put up with the stringent rules, the exorbitant rents, and the disrespect.
Just so all of you know, by refusing to let bachelors live in your house or society, you are infringing on their fundamental right, which a punishable offense according to the law. And even though the constitution permits housing societies to make their own rules and regulations, but in case they violate a person's fundamental right, you can file a complaint against them and take them to court.
I admit that our lifestyle is a bit different if compared to people with families. We stay up late, we work till late, like to party once in a while and we have gender-neutral friends who come over all the time. But what families forget is that when I am living 2000kms away from my own families, in such a situation my friends become my family. And we all like to call ourselves educated and forward, so what happens when a girl decides to bring a guy friend back home? What happens if we go out at 1am in the night for a drive? What is the problem if we have friends over for a party which is completely under control and is not disturbing anyone at all? We are not intruding in your lives, we do not come and ask you to stop your children from having a screaming match on a Sunday morning, the only time I get to sleep in. Because we realized that we are two different kinds of people and we have to learn to co-exist. We do not ban a certain group of people just because we don't like their lifestyle.
In my area there are around 10 societies and more than half of them do not permit flats to be rented out to bachelors. This is the discrimination that has plagued our modern world.
And something needs to be done about this. If you share my views, please feel free to drop me a line and let’s discuss what we can do.