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Empowerment or Awareness for Woman?

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Empowerment or Awareness for woman???

By: Sudeep Bhatta & Aditee Sharma

Today we are breathing in 4g world. Our country has come out of flying colors in every aspect of development. We have reached mars, manufactured medicines, hurled satellites, won world cups and grabbed Oscars. But it is very pity to know that women in India haven’t got any respectable position in the hearts of the people of India.

Women during ancient times enjoyed high status with men. They were educated and had importance in family affairs. Even men did not had right to divorce women. They were treated as ‘ARDHANGINIS’. They were free to choose their life partners. We all know about ‘SWAYMVARA’ system mentioned in many epics. Religious ceremonies and Sacrifices were jointly performed by husbands and wives. Even our gods have taught us not to discriminate between male and female. ‘ARDHNARISHWAR’ form or lord Shiva symbolizes this.

There are many examples in our literary history were kings and towns were destroyed because a single woman was wronged by the state. Ravana’s whole empire destroyed because he kidnapped Sita. All the Kauravas killed and their empire demolished because they insulted Draupadi in public.

During medieval period India was known as golden bird which was the symbolism of unity and diversity but when Mughal emperors came to India, they started looting the treasuries of Indian kings and sexually harassing their mothers, sisters, daughters and wives. They made then meek, enslaved them, and prostituted them. They sold and bought them like a commodity. Indians started restricting their women to the four boundaries of their houses because they were considered prestige of the family. Widows started following SATI PRATHA because they were cognizant of their condition after. And the story continued to the British period.

But today even eight decades after independence, they have not attained an esteemed place in the sight of society. They are still considered inferior. They are taken as second grade citizens of the society. Our country where peace and non-violence are emphasized, there woman are still raped, they are still murdered for dowry, they are still killed in the wombs of their mothers, they and still beaten behind the four wall of their homes, they are stilled attacked by acid, they are still tyrannized, they are still burned.

A girl Roopali doesn’t like to a part of university reunion now a days. Even she perplexes when she meet any of her collage mate in beauty parlor. Almost of her friends are working in multinational companies, in hospitals, in colleges or running business while she is confined to her in laws, banged in cooking, cleaning and rising up kids. Her frustration and anger is not wrong even there are thousands of woman like Roopali who being educated just for the eligibility of getting married in a well settled family.

All of us are chanting the verses of woman empowerment. The term empowerment holds different meanings to different psyches and this divergence, this comparison of facts against fiction, this way of interpretation can perhaps answer the quintessential question. Are woman really empowered?

Our history witnesses when a woman has same experience in tenure and job as man she has very lower chance of getting promoted. And the very profound example of this is between us. Do you remember first lady IPS officer Mrs. Kiran Bedi. Yes even who can forget her. She resigned police department before completing her job. You know why? Being the senior most officer she was not promoted to the post of commissioner of police and the only reason was she was a lady.

We have some more such kind of eminent and honest personalities like Veena Sikri IFS, Reva Nayr IAS who denied promotions just because of male dominating society.

Do we still really think that our woman is empowered and has got equal status as man in the society?

 Of course not, the term woman empowerment in India seems like two sets of an elephant’s teeth one to show off and another to chew with.

No eyebrows can be raised if we say that women are working today. They are going out to work. They are trying to filling the gap between male and female. They are trying to work shoulder to man. But they are considered weaker. Majority of people think that man work harder than woman. Do you really think that considering muscle power stronger than the mind power is smartness in this smart world? They might be unconscious of the fact that in today’s world a pen is mightier than the sword.

No doubt woman like Geeta Phogat, Babita Phogat, Arundhati Roy, Sania Mirza, Sania Nahewal, Lata Mangeshkar, Kalpna Chawala, Aishwarya Roy etc. have enlightened the name of India on international stage. Have you ever thought what we are giving them in return? We are denouncing them for the way they dress, for the way they behave, for the way they talk, for the person whom they are married to. We daily come across such kind of headlines in newspaper. Instead of praising them for their achievements, we are constantly trying to peep into their personal affairs.

All the people who take pride in the nomination of Mrs. Pratibha Devi singh Patil as the president of India might be unaware of the fact that she was not nominated for the sake of so called women empowerment, the main motive to nominate Mrs. Patil as president was to brag the term woman empowerment in India. It was also prejudiced that being a woman she would remain loyal to the party concerned.

Our honorable PM on Independence Day made an extemporary on empowering woman but even though he didn’t accept Yashodha ben as his wife. Although he mentioned her name for the nomination of MP in Varansi in the year 2014. If a prime minister is not taking any steps towards empowering woman in his practical life how we can expect from a common man. Is woman just a commodity, used when needed then thrown?

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