I never planned to write this article. But the recent suicide of a newbie actor Sushant Singh Rajput forced me to write the second part of the benefits I have got being an MRA or joining the Men’s Rights Movement (MRM).
The ‘Good Boy’ Syndrome
I am normally not moved by any news in Bollywood unless that is related to the promotion of mindless feminism. In Sushant Singh’s case, there is probably no feminist angle involved. So far whatever information is available about his sad suicide is that he was a victim of bullying by Bollywood biggies. I also came to know that he was a bright student, more brilliant than me. A typical ‘good boy’ in our parlance. Even though anybody can be a victim of bullying, these ‘good boys’ are the ones who become first targets.
I have written previously that my journey from being a feminist to an MRA has helped me a lot in my life. In my previous life, I was the so-called ‘good boy’. A studious, laborious, simple person who believed in good virtues of life. A typical of any IIT boy you can find around. I believed in not hurting others (not that I was very capable of as well) and I always felt sad when people didn’t understand me. A typical ‘good boy’ attitude of pleasing others around.
That is why these ‘good boys’ can’t attract girls. We are rather boring individuals who believe in good virtues of life. Added to this, I was a non-smoker, non-drinker, non-party goer etc. everything that is considered ‘cool’ in the modern world. I believed in good virtues and thought that would take me to places.
Not only that lifestyle couldn’t take me anywhere but also failed me in my personal life. As a feminist, I believed in empowering women only to realize in my personal life that I was too weak to empower anybody, in fact, I myself needed empowerment, forget about empowering others.
The BIG Bullies
When I was undergoing a divorce, it was a devastating experience for me. In one hand, I was not able to handle my legal tension of fighting against the best lawyers in the city and the possible best network of goons against me; on the other hand, I was badly a victim of office politics in my Kolkata office. The job that I loved otherwise made me so insecure through constant bullying and nepotism by fellow workers that I could hardly focus on what I was doing.
The result was obviously devastating. I dreamt of staying near my house as the job was a creative one, but on the other hand, I was not able to survive. Finally, I had to quit and join some other company in a distant city.
By that time, I joined India’s Men’s Rights Movement and became an active member. As I saw many other men undergoing the same fate, I realized that being simple, truthful and straightforward guy will not help me reach anywhere. I needed to be a real badass MRA to handle this world.
Being A Badass MRA
While I didn’t start lying outrightly, but I started standing up for my rights everywhere – at home, court, social media or in the workplace. The person who was once used to be a silent spectator and refrained from expressing his views in political and other sensitive matters started speaking his mind everywhere. I soon realized that the people around me who delivers ‘expert’ opinion were not even half as informed as I was but still their views were endorsed by others and not mine.
Yes, that was frustrating. Like the frustration, you have when you find a dumbass like Alia Bhatt have 48M followers on twitter. You wonder why do people follow such dumbos anyway? But that is a reality today and that was the reality when I joined Men’s Rights in 2010 as well. The dumbos who promoted feminism were more successful in reaching out to people and convincing them with their wrong campaigns and not the relatively educated, truth-speaking MRAs.
One of the challenges MRM threw at me was to speak my mind and promote men’s rights in every platform. Now the problem back in 2010 was that Men’s Rights didn’t have a place in society. Anyone remotely talking about men’s rights or against feminism was targeted, separated and humiliated. I lost many friends while promoting men’s rights.
The problem to handle such mental stress is more for truth-speaking men because we always feel that others are speaking the truth or are best-intentioned when we interact with us, and that is where we get cheated very often.
We don’t understand politics and we very often speak our mind thinking our qualities will save us or truth will prevail, but most often it does not. Like Salman Khan proved his innocence twice in different killing cases even when all pieces of evidence were against him. The realization that the truth doesn’t prevail always and one needs to be tactful and strong from inside came through my activism for Men’s rights.
My Fight for Men’s Rights
In 2010, men’s rights activism was almost like a criminal voice. We were bashed all over. But the situation was not as worse as we have seen after the 2012 December Nirbhaya rape case. As we saw the paid propaganda by feminist NGOs, anything written against feminism made us direct villains as if we were rapists ourselves. We lost many friends, people stopped talking to us and we started getting death threats – almost every day. Women freely abused us for no reason, in every discussion on social media feminism was involved and wherever we tried to bring in men’s perspective, we were shamed, our education and upbringing was questioned.
I remember how much I worked hard during that time to establish men’s rights viewpoint in every social media platform possible. I didn’t hide my identity in doing so as I would have felt cheating myself. People around me were behaving like nuts, they were all hungry for our blood as if we were the real rapists. I used to fight these monsters every day from morning till late night, to restart all over again the next day. I knew very well that the people who were threatening me were not even half qualified, but who bothers about qualification on social media or for that matter, anywhere?
How to Handle BIG Bullies
The main challenge was fighting the battle myself and not depending on anyone. When people talk about fighting depression, they say, you need to talk. But let me tell you the best medicine is to be a real ‘haraami’ yourself to fight out ‘haraamis’. If you talk to others, they will most probably dishearten you, ask you to compromise or forget but those will not help you develop your inner strength. What will develop that strength is by becoming a real mean guy to those who are/were mean to you? If Sushant Singh Rajput wanted to discuss his problems in Bollywood, he could probably solve those himself after a lot of other sacrifices, but his morality would have been down. Instead, he needed to be a real badass guy to stand up.
Now, this is against the Vedic philosophy I always talk about. But we will come to that some other day. Let me talk about how being a badass MRA helped me in my personal life.
No matter what, bullying is everywhere today. In your home, in your locality, at school, office, social media everywhere. So, what do you do? Do you leave everything and stay indoors?
No, that is not the solution at all. If anything the recent lockdown has taught me, that is humans do not like to be indoors. They want to go out. That is true for introverts like Sushant Singh Rajput and I as well. So, getting retracted in a cocoon is not the solution.
So, what happens when you fight bullies as bigger as Salman Khan, Karan Johar and other Who’s who of Bollywood and you want to sustain there. For people working in other industries, it is easy, they can change the company and the old set of unbearable bullies will be gone. But when heavyweight bullies like Khans of Bollywood run after your life, what do you do?
How I Handled Bullies
In my working life, I had handled one set of such corporate honchos earlier. By this time, I was a known MRA, known for my badass MRA blog The Male Factor. Not many people in my circle knew that as I normally don’t accept them on social media. Also, to determine how much mental strength one has, you need a real experiment on him.
I am a simple looking harmless guy who by that time has developed skills to bite back in the right way to anyone who crossed my path wrongly. This started when I started dating a very sexy and hot Bengali chic in my company. She was the Executive Assistant to our CEO and a real bombshell. We started going out to hotels for organizing company events. Being a bong myself we had developed a very strong connection in a very short time. However, she was the heartthrob of the whole company including other directors. So, all of those directors formed a cartel and started finding fault with me and they easily took my other peers in confidence. Soon, it became a point that I was not doing any meaningful work but was roaming around with a hot chic and dating at the company’s expense. My manager who was a director himself was a guy who used to bad mouth everybody and started harassing me in every possible way.
If I were the guy before joining MRM, I would have cried, got really frustrated and could have committed suicide. But at this point, I was a different guy altogether. I started taking on these directors myself and started giving fitting replies to my manager. By this time, I really didn’t care about my job.
I was also very popular among other employees as I used to fight for them, unlike the HR who could not (because they feared job loss). One day when my manager (the evil company executive) started bad-mouthing someone and finding fault for no reason, I gave him a fitting reply in the meeting in front of others. The reply was in his own language.
As you may know, company politics may turn really evil sometimes, especially when I stole the hot Bengali chic from everyone else. Some of my Bihari colleagues openly started talking about physically abusing me.
But unfortunately, in this debate the girl I was going out with left the company. I suspected some foul-play but she didn’t tell me anything. After some time, I also left the company after another of my good friend and a beautiful HR manager left the company. I started feeling lonely in the organization and left them.
How I Handled Two MNC Giants
Another case happened during my stint with a global IT MNC, this time involving a supplier that is another global networking giant. This time feminism was involved.
This global networking giant is poor in its ethical and business etiquette. They always goof up everything and I wonder how they maintain their global presence and global businesses. In one case, their executive didn’t do proper due diligence before asking me frivolous questions. These questions were already clarified but they still asked which they should have been collected from the ticket raised to them. On pointing out their fault, their female executive started misbehaving with me (imagine a vendor misbehaving with a client and using bad words). So, I escalated to her manager, who showed his temper too.
This was a clear case of violation of business code of conduct by the vendor but surprisingly my company had a ‘discussion’ with me. Now you know very well what would have happened in that ‘discussion’. I could have raised that ‘discussion’ and client emails to our company’s internal disciplinary committee and got the executives much need ‘boot’ they deserved, but instead I played a different trick this time.
Now, for every problem this global networking giant have in my projects, I highlight those and leave no stone unturned to show their fault at every possible way and divert those cases to the executives who jumped in earlier. Now this vendor is so worthless they make such blunders in almost every project and our company suffers. Every time that happens, I throw that back to those executives, and they can’t even tell me anything. They may be cursing me in their mind but who cares?
If I expose this incident in a public forum or on my blog there will be a big corporate shake-up as happened in David Damore’s case in Google. This time there will be two IT giants jolted, but I decided to cool it off and use that one incident for the entire period I stay in this organization.
The Biggies in Men’s Rights
The same thing happened when I was barred from coming to India’s national Men’s Rights Conference after they took my help in planning. That was a great insult to me, to someone who was not only serious about the cause but was a dedicated worker. When that happened, I didn’t take it lightly and the result is today those people, leaders, NGOs have become almost not seen in men’s rights space. The national meet in 2019 happened without the lacklustre and enthusiasm it used to happen earlier. Also, they became exposed in their other activism they took up during the last two years. Many have been in hiding ever since and the main NGO that was against me is closed now with no activism noted in the last two years.
The Mantra of Handling Bullies
Actually, the mantra for handling bullies bigger and stronger than you is the conviction that you can do it alone. But let me also clarify that dedicated clout is necessary. For good boys like Sushant Singh Rajput, it’s difficult to almost impossible to develop that clout, that is why they fail. Unfortunately for him, Bollywood is controlled by 6-7 heavyweights and not as widely spread as any other industry is. Added to that, in the formal industry we need good connections as well. Otherwise, the background verification of employees can really be screwed up if he doesn’t have clout. Almost every corporate job today is filled by recommendations. Unless we can develop that corporate clout, it is not possible to progress in the corporate world.
You can call it a mean society, but that is how it works. Bollywood, that is funded mostly by black money and foreign funds are more likely to be full of bullies, opportunists and mean people. That is why it is better to expect only mean behaviour from these people. Probably Sushant Singh Rajput was too naïve to understand that. If he was a brilliant student, he should have used his brilliance to investigate into the industry before jumping in. He really needed to be a badass player to sustain, not only in Bollywood but also in life. That is how fighting for men’s rights helped me. Constant death threats normalized those for me and now I have become a very happy and peaceful person. Because even for getting peace, you need to be a strong person.