Is Pub Culture really destroying the fabric of Indian Culture ?

Excuse me, but where does this moral culture really exist, except in the fantasies of those that the media are hyping up as India’s moral brigade. In the small towns and villages of India ??? Where 10 times more women are raped and molested, abused, physically assaulted and mutilated for the mere crime of being a woman or a low caste ! There is no pub culture there. But there is a huge problem of alcoholism nevertheless.
Where young men are killed and hanged and young women are killed by their own families just because they fell in love and wanted to marry out of their caste. There is no pub culture there.
Alcoholism is a problem. No doubt. But there is more alcohol related domestic abuse against women in India by their husbands in their own homes than anywhere else. If any of the supporters of the moral policing would just care to g to one of the shelters for domestically abused women, they will know that the real problem with alcohol is not in the pub culture but at home.
And if India is progressing towards a country where men and women stand equal in jobs, status and financial independence, where we have had women as our Prime Ministers, Chief Ministers, and Cabinet Ministers, then why should men and women be treated as any different ? If drinking alcohol in a pub is immoral for a woman, they why is it morally OK for a man ?
I have seen too many families destroyed by alcoholism to be able to make a stand for excessive drinking. So what should one do ? Ban alcohol ? Lets get real. the very people who form the moral brigade will probably not go for that. Corrupt pockets are fed with that. State coffers rely on taxes on alcohol. And banning alcohol merely drives it underground, and gives the underworld goons a god sent opportunity to make money. Tourism collapses.
There must be checks and balances. But the answer is NOT to target the physically weaker sections of our people. Women. That is not moral policing. It is sheer cowardice.
And I cannot understand why the Chief Minister of Rajasthan has a problem with a girl and a boy holding hands ? He does not seem to have such a problem when the same hand raises itself in violence rather than affection.

78 Responses to “Is Pub Culture really destroying the fabric of Indian Culture ?”

  1. Malcom says:

    Learn,earn and live your life without harming others in the society.Its foolish to think you can arrest CHANGE.

  2. Harb says:

    what is rule in the US
    can only be the exceptions here
    so we shouldn’t overly worry
    about the exceptions
    and I think
    even those few exceptions would be
    like the safety valve
    so that we may eventually not have to
    not only tolerate Mom
    having hangover at breakfast
    but even serve her with drink
    first thing in the morning
    before preparing breakfast for her later
    It seems like Chaitali
    not many are into drinking
    but we are forcing them to,
    for, going against restrictions is
    the very basic principle of life
    and we from our narrow-thinking/weaknesses
    are stoking the fires of that principle
    and by using physical force
    are putting further fuel onto those fires

  3. Harb says:

    Bear what you cannot change
    Change what you cannot bear
    —Harb

  4. Pallavi says:

    Very succintly put. I’ve read a lot of bloggers’ posts on this topic and I’ve written something myself. But you hit the nail on the head by alluding to the CM’s take on ‘hate is Ok but love is not’! What double standards we live in.
    -http://writerzblock.wordpress.com/

  5. Navin Joshi says:

    Initially I joined in the debate to reply to Shekhar’s blog but some comments touched my sensitivity and being a father of two lovely daughters I felt obliged to get myself dragged into the debate…and here I am again…in direct response to Ritu…
    Ritu you said:
    ‘Let me take your points one by one. Unlike you I will resist the temptation of making any judgement on your generation and its level or lack of confusion!’
    My reply:
    I humbly thank you for showing courtesy of not judging ‘my generation’ – I am sure you have assumed my ‘generation’ – today’s young Indians have a habit of assuming too much and ‘having more opinions than information’ as the cliché goes…any way in this case your assumption could be correct.
    Earlier you had assumed and labelled me an ‘anti-pub & anti western’ which I am not and cannot be as I live in the ‘west’ and breathe its air.
    Ritu’s folly:
    ‘In a free democratic society the majority decides and once it is decided and has become law, the only people who have a right to impose those controls are the law enforcers.’
    And,
    ‘In a free democratic society the majority decides and once it is decided and has become law, the only people who have a right to impose those controls are the law enforcers.’
    My response:
    First let us agree or disagree – Are we really a ‘free democratic society’? If we are then why are we not concerned about the 600 million fellow Indians who scramble every day with litter/garbage to feed themselves? Law and enforcement are too heavily clichéd phrases and only applicable to the HAVE’s and irrelevant to HAVE NOT’s -…the ’slumdogs’ have no such luxuries. ‘Law enforcers’ have a price in India…only those who HAVE are where they act…Aren’t you rather naïve Ritu to believe such ‘?’ ? – (I avoid being abusive to anyone so the questions mark) I concede, you do have an opinion and have right to have it – but is it not a fact that ‘Law Enforcers’ most of the time are only onlookers…like in ‘Bangalore Pub Case’…an event that prompted us to have this debate…
    And,
    My dear Ritu, what majority you are talking about I may ask? Less that 50% of eligible adults vote – so no majority here…and young Indian of present generation do not even think India can ever change so they do not vote…so which majority are we talking about ?
    But let me add before someone shouts – I love India as it is a ‘democracy’ albeit with million faults but there is hope that one day – may be 4 generation later henceforth – we would be a well worth free and true Democracy…but today with God’s grace we have made a beginning…and we are debating sensibly and with respect…thanks to you…and likes of you…I salute you…
    With love…we agree to disagree..
    Ritu said:
    ‘In the situation we are discussing one set of people gets up and abuses another set of people in the bid to apply controls that are NOT sanctioned by law. ‘
    Ritu, lets be honest and for once be truthful…What people are harping about the Pub event in Banglore was no pub at all – one news said this was a ‘lodge’ and not an official pub where youngsters forced themselves – please correct me if I am wrong…I am pointing this as all those who talk about law be allowed to take its own course can understand that law does not work in India – money does…If the news is correct than all those who were involved in this event were criminals – including the Ram Sena and not ONLY the Ram Sena.
    Ritu asked:
    ‘I do not see your connection between the isolation of western societies and the incident we are discussing at all. I would appreciate if you could elaborate on that one.’
    My response:
    I never mentioned ‘the isolation of western societies’ anywhere in my post. I do not know what you wish me to elaborate…
    And Finally I wish to make an observation:
    Your integrity is at stake here…you keep saying ‘I don’t see any relation between or connection between’ this and that (my words). But is not true that everything in the universe is interrelated – connected? Heard of that pro-verb ‘One mans food is another mans poison’…though opposite but still interrelated …and once you grasp this you will better understand the other side of the story….
    And Final Final:
    Hope the time to conclude has arrived as I do not see we have any more worthwhile ideas to share – and I must thank you for a good debate…take care…
    PS:
    Pub is not all that what young Indian think today…its beyond their imagination where it would lead them…our generation is concerned as we have witnessed devastation it has brought to millions…
    In the end it’s the attitude that counts – PUB GOERS ARE PROGRSSIVE AND REST ARE GANVAR…can bring unwarranted challenges – the one the Ram Sena has brought…and the next…keep imagining….
    God bless

  6. Navin Joshi says:

    Chaitali you are in the wrong footing my dear.
    You said:
    ‘For example, gujarat is a state which has banned Alcohol and statistic say it is said that ujarat is the state with highest consumption of alcohol’
    First why no capital ‘G’ for Gujarat…still at KG school?
    I think you are too young for me to get into debate with you. But you made a comment which is very close to my sentiments and many before you have pointed out to justify their claims…
    Gujarat is a Dry State and we Gujarati’s prefer it the way it is…a Dry but Wet at places. I have lived in Gujarat and have attended many parties serving alcohol…and as a foreigner I carried a permit though I am an occasional ‘one small glass’ beer drinker…High Consumption in Gujarat is a myth…and Gujarat borders Wet states on four sides and to get a drink legally one has to drive only a few hours… sorry to get away from the real point I wish to make and that does relate to the ‘Pub Culture’.
    In Gujarat people (including many ‘Manibens’ )drink and enjoy their alcohol in privacy of their homes or small Hotel parties or Farmhouse parties…but no one is found drunk on the roads of Gujarat…(there are exceptions to the rule however)…’Pub culture’ cannot not give this guarantee…
    Chaitali said:
    ‘I have been born and brought up in this pub culture surrounding. And I do understand what is good for me and what is bad for me.’
    I say you are being dishonest if not lying:
    If you were born and brought up in pub culture surrounding you must be 10 years old or less!!! Pub culture came to India less than a decade ago (we did have BAR culture)…you should be pulled out of this debate for being an under aged child creating a false myth….Don’t take it seriously I was just for Joke…But I truly hope you know what is good and bad for you – and time will be the judge – remember me then …
    God bless

  7. Chaitali says:

    NAVIN JOSHI
    Yes I agree it should have been Capital G for Gujarat.
    And when I said I am born and brought up with pub culture, I meant drinks are always served in private parties ever since I remember.
    I think debates are good, it helps people broanden mindsets. Thanks for the blessings

  8. brahmastra says:

    Navin,
    Those were some nice and clear posts..a breath of fresh air for a change in the midst of such a confused lot over here. The bottom line is: alcohol is slow poision. This poison has been injected into the mainstream teenagers and women only recently in Indian society with greedy liquor companies from everywhere capitalizing on this modern lifestyle..before it was limited to men, and worst case, at least the wives were sober to take care of their drunk husbands. All these pseudo-progressive folks will learn the hard way when they and their next generations suffer the consequences of their social choices, as this slow poison takes them into mental and physical diseases they have not experienced yet.
    This is not about women vs men. This pub culture needs to be banned altogether..and the argument that the underground market will flourish is true..but, statistically, it will still reduce the consumption by more than half without the easy access.

  9. harijim says:

    #55 Since its pubs we’re talking about shouldn’t it be:
    Beer what cannot be changed and
    Change what we cannot beer.
    So cheers!

  10. Harb says:

    Ah, yes, the middle path!

  11. Navin Joshi says:

    Chaitali – you are very honest and thats what I like about you. I am sure humans like you have the capacity to understand and recognise a mirage. And Pub culture – totally Indian invention and has no links to the West – is such a mirage. Major cities in the west are suffering from similar evil that is eating away the youth force of those nations. Indian youth should learn from their illfated lifestyle…this lifestyle is nothing but a Mirage.
    Finally, when I say that most on this blog , including Shekhar, misses the point – your comment proves my point.
    You Said:
    ‘And when I said I am born and brought up with pub culture, I meant drinks are always served in private parties ever since I remember.’
    Having drinks in private secluded parties and in a PUB Culture environment are two different things. And you could not differentiate between the two…and most urbanised youths are in the same boat.
    I am sure you have the honesty & courage to see my point in a positive way…
    God Bless ypu my young friend…

  12. Ritu says:

    Dear Navin ji,
    You make some interesting points that definitely call for a response, but I am a little tied down with things to answer each and every point you have raised in detail. I will probably make blog on this issue when I have time and send you the link.
    Let me just say this much for now, firstly I apologise for calling you ‘anti-western’. There is nothing in your post that indicates that. I wrongly clubbed with you Brahmastra. My bad.
    The other thing is that my stand is against the hooliganism in the episode. As far as the pub-culture goes, that is not such a cut and dry debate there are many hues to it. I personally am not a pub goer. The place is too loud and smoky for my tastes. But I don’t like to judge people who go there because I know a lot of balanced and sensible people (read not addicted types) who like to go. When I look at my sample space, social has drinking has gone up but alcohol abuse has gone down.
    Anyway, there are many layers to the debate, hopefully we’ll get back to it in some time.
    Till then wish you all the best and thanks for your kind wishes.

  13. Pankaj Agrawal says:

    Interesting debate but I dont think anybody is arguing that pub culture should be encouraged. The point is individual freedom vs moral social policing (by unauthorised elements). I know the boundries of freedom are a thin line and what is my freedom may be ur intrusion. But the question here is individual freedom intruding in the open collective space of culture. Is curbing (basic) freedom (of going to a pub or celebrating valentines day) in the name of culture or religion right?
    If the ram sena is a BJP supported outfit(?), BJP is in power in Karnataka and can ban all the pubs. Simple. Just as the congress banned dance bars in Mumbai. Y use ram sena? If alcohol is a problem ban it, but through authorised government channels. Why shd Ram sena get the power to decide what is good for us. We have a system in place. If u are unhappy about the system or believe it is useless, go and change it. A bad system doesnt justify a worse system of rule by muscle power.

  14. Ritu says:

    @ concerned Indian:
    “Imagine, waking up for school in the morning and mom is not to be seen in the kitchen. Where is mom ? Where is my breakfast ? Well, mom got drunk last night and is having a terrible hangover.

    That seems like a very extreme scenario. I know moms who drink socially. Most of them were off alcohol during their pregnancy and lactation periods. They do not drink on school days (infact most working people avoid drinking on week nights) and there are very few people I know (the kinds who go to pubs) that drink so much that they have a hangover. It is usually sensible and moderated drinking. Infact a typical ‘pub-goer’ is likely to get up in the morning a go to the gym!
    Usually people get out of that extreme phase once they leave student life. Work life is so demanding that most people cannot afford to be knocked out in the morning.
    As I mentioned before, I saw more alcohol abuse in the previous generation. Our generation is usually very focussed on their career and health and do not want any kind of addiction to come in the way. Infact I think if there is anything our generation is addicted to (as my mom was mentioning yesterday) it is to the internet!!

  15. brahmastra says:

    The biggest abusers of women are the women themselves when they lose their grounding, as some of the ones here. Any kind of fragmented logic does not change the fact that alcohol, and to a larger extent – tobacco – is poisonous for a woman’s body, and that of her offsprings, in any amount. When you say Pub Culture is not THAT bad, just wait for some time to see its true effects and go into a downward spiral of other addictions, depression and mental diseases. This is what is happening in the west. This is not about anti-western and pro-eastern..as it is of having some clarity and social-consciousness while dealing with objective facts. When the mothers, and pillars of a particular society are themselves deluded, it is a sign of doom for the society.
    India, so far, had been a blessed land for its social structure to deem such ego-feeding lifetsyles as a taboo, and that has been a primary factor for the good physical and mental health of a majority of Indians. These pseudo-progressive folks are injecting the virus of misinformation and hedonism in the name of progress.
    An excellent example of how the collective good is greater than the individual is India’s service to the world of offering the highest quantity and quality of doctors, engineers, scientists, etc. The social pressure was such that a majority of youngsters were forced into those streams with or without their liking, and that resulted in the collective good. Ego is the primary cause of social destruction..and you’ll learn the hard way.

  16. Ritu says:

    Brahmastra, when I read what your posts, I feel a chill down my spine. I am quite glad that you are not sitting in front of me and are some entity floating in cyber-space. It is this kind of deluded thinking that makes monsters like Hitler.
    And it chills me that such people are now manifesting in India.

  17. Ritu says:

    P.S Brahmastra: I wanted to add that a lot of theories make sense, like the ‘collective good’ and ‘genetic pool’ or democracy being a double-edged sword etc. But the extreme, intolerant and coldly indistant opinions distract from the merit of those thoughts.
    And as far as ‘psudo’ part of intellectual is concerned, that is really all a matter perspective. If one looks at your opinions one could (and a great majority does) conclude the same about you. No?
    And I completely agree ‘Ego is the cause of self-destruction’ and honestly I see that more in your assertions of superiority.

  18. brahmastra says:

    Ritu,
    There is a lot for you to learn. Make it easy on yourself.

  19. Navin Joshi says:

    The tussle between Ritu and Brahmastra is interesting…I am supporting neither as I am from the Moderate Brigade…the over whelming majority of the Indian populace…neither type of extremism interests me…neither the Ram Sena nor the Pinker Sena (I coined the term for the newly found ‘Pink Chaddi’ brigade). But I am tempted to show Ritu – her own morphed mirror image in form of Brahmastra…
    Ritu commented:
    “Brahmastra, when I read what your posts, I feel a chill down my spine. I am quite glad that you are not sitting in front of me and are some entity floating in cyber-space. It is this kind of deluded thinking that makes monsters like Hitler.
    And it chills me that such people are now manifesting in India.”
    My response:
    Ritu I am sorry but please kindly replace your name for Brahmastra in above comment…you will understand the other side of the coin…I feel you too are floating in cyber-space perhaps (in Pink chaddi) holding hand of a Ram Sainik (aka a scene from Superman)….can you visualise this? Try…you will see that clapping needs two hands….and I see your hand and Ram Sena’s hand…And comparison of Hitler shows either you are paranoid Or are attempting to hype up as you have no good argumnet left…
    Ritu says:
    P.S Brahmastra: I wanted to add that a lot of theories make sense, like the ‘collective good’ and ‘genetic pool’ or democracy being a double-edged sword etc. But the extreme, intolerant and coldly indistant opinions distract from the merit of those thoughts.
    My truth:
    Ritu I do not support your point of view ‘absolutely’ – because I need you to understand who is extreme, who is intolerant and who is putting forward ‘ coldly indistant opinions’…Is it likes of you or Ram Sena or both ? As we, the moderate brigade, the overwhelming majority, support neither and only support moderation – I feel extremism is embedded in both sides.
    Ritu says:
    And as far as ‘pseudo’ part of intellectual is concerned, that is really all a matter perspective. If one looks at your opinions one could (and a great majority does) conclude the same about you. No?
    My Question:
    Ritu which ‘great majority’you are talking about ? – or is it a myth created by you…and if you say ‘is really all a matter perspective’ – Not sure what you mean…but if it is what I understand than can I ask you why all this fuss…if it is only a matter of perspective….
    Ritu says:
    And I completely agree ‘Ego is the cause of self-destruction’ and honestly I see that more in your assertions of superiority.
    My fair comment:
    Not totally correct Ritu…assertion of superiority is even as much & very distinctly visible in your postings…too.
    Finally:
    Finally…I have a gut feeling that unless moderation is given the supreme place in fast changing India – we shall have to witness more criminal events such as that we have witnessed so far and, if ‘Pink Chaddi’ could be construed as a decent form of protest than we have not seen anything yet….from the other side of extremism…
    BOTH EXTREMISM ARE MIRROR IMAGES OF EACH OTHER>>>ONLY MODERATION CAN & WILL WIN…
    God bless

  20. Ritu says:

    Dear Mr Joshi,
    I am sorry to disappoint you, but I do not support the Pink Chaddi campaign. I know that puts the presumptions you have made about my leanings and little off kelter, but the truth is that you cannot bracket people that easily. Everyone who condemned the Mangalore pub attack does not automatically become a supporter of the pink chaddi brigade. I do not believe in aggressive feminism at all. And I think the Pink chaddi campaign was really knee-jerk. Emancipation comes with quiet strength not with militant assertion of rights. But, you seem to have already made up your mind on my leanings so it might be a wasted exercise telling you this.
    As far as the rest of the points are concerned unfortunately we are on completely different communication planes. It is apparent from your points that you missed my original point completely. My debate with Brahmastra (and my last post) is based upon a series of earlier debates which you probably did not read and hence your mis-interpretation and taking my statement out of context.
    And yes, before I sign off since you claim to be neutral and neither form of extremism interests you, I would look forward to you doing a similar dissertation of Brahmastra’s points!
    With kind regards,
    Ritu

  21. Navin Joshi says:

    Dear Rituji,
    I thought you would understand that I was making the point light heartedly, and there was no intension of malice or undermining your stand…I did not mean to club you in any partisan divide and certainly not with Pinker Brigade…My comment re: Cyber-space and you in pink chaddi was light heartedly put & was not in anyway indicative of your leaning…believe me, I have found you to be quite intelligent, very interesting, well expressing and, charming person. And my position is made very clear that I am a party to moderation and have no partisan bias…sure some support from heritage and legacy does crop up from time to time and should be understandable. Incidentally, I have read all your posting and Bhramastra’s postings…and what is perceived is that you both have a difference of 180 degrees and are at loggerhead against each other…where as I humbly refute your point, and I quote..” As far as the rest of the points are concerned unfortunately we are on completely different communication planes.”…in reality our point are much closer to each other than you think…but attitude are surly opposite and different…and that fact I do concede… dissention of Bhramastra is out of question as I would not do that with you either…instead I would love to debate points and issues with both of you.
    I am sure you would accept my apology for giving the impression that I have made up my mind to club you with the Pinker Brigade…believe me, that certainly is not the case….
    God Bless

  22. wish some one would define the “indian culture”.
    it’s just another construct – –

  23. prats says:

    The blog (and comments) were really interesting untill some people took it personally and got into an egotistical debate.
    Cheerio..

  24. rameshraju says:

    Indian has strongest family system due to its unique culture and traditions. Today pub culture is no doubt, destroying the fabric of Indian culture. Rapid growth of divorce cases and crime rates on women are few symptoms. What ever may be the reason, Pub Culture should be banned in India. If not India will become another America.

  25. Concerned Indian says:

    Growing up in a white collared middle class family in Mumbai (I am in my mid 30s), drinking was not accepted in my family. In my early twenties, I would occasionally go to the “Bar & Restaurant” places. I would tell my parents about my visits and they would ask me to exercise caution. In those days, none of our female friends would accompany us to these places and if they did, they would not drink.
    After a couple of years, I left for the US and came back after about 12 years. Now, I see women smoking and drinking all over. ( I live in Bangalore now).
    Let me be honest. It came as a shock to me. Well, if guys can drink, so can girls. But in our society, we have always expected higher standards from girls and even though, I think I am liberal and modern, I am not totally convinced that this smoking and drinking should be encouraged.
    Liberation combined with education will work, else liberation would only lead to wayward living.
    So, what is the solution. America & and many west european countries have taken the liberation path. Since education is not guaranteed, you end up with many failures.
    Many Islamic countries have taken up the zero-liberation path. I am not sure how the women feel there but I feel uncomfortable with this form of control.
    How about in India. For most of the Hindus, absence of a religion would mean, one could do anything. The only thing that could control us is tradition and culture. Now how do you define this and there is nothing like a unified culture or tradition. It changes from state to caste to community to individual.
    To me it looks like we will go the American way which is a failure.

  26. rameshraju says:

    It is very better and safe ban all the pubs in India, to safegourd our culture. It is diverting Indian youth towards wrong track. It is making youth to enhance their rights and forget their duties. Women are attending to pubs in vulgar attires and are getting alcholosed soon. Pub culture can surely destroy the fabric of Indian culture and family system. There is no other way to safegourd our Indian culture. I beg Supreme court to ban the pubs strictly.

  27. rameshraju says:

    It is very better and safe to ban all the pubs in India, to safegourd our culture. It is diverting Indian youth towards wrong track. It is making youth to enhance their rights and forget their duties. Women are attending to pubs in vulgar attires and are getting alcholosed soon. Pub culture can surely destroy the fabric of Indian culture and family system. There is no other way to safegourd our Indian culture. I beg Supreme court to ban the pubs strictly.

  28. LOL says:

    Sheeple… all of you

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