Women Empowerment & Women Safety- By: Neha Dangra

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As Women’s day approaching nearer the newspapers, magazines and television will be flooded with the news and articles regarding women’s achievement and acknowledging the status of women in the society. But the question is does really celebrating this day or appreciating and rewarding women on this day had made any difference in improving the position of women in society. On the same day when the newspapers are writing great articles throwing light on our rich heritage and position enjoyed by women in our enlightened society in the past, there will be news on the cruelty women are facing today in our society. So I don’t think there has been much change in the society mentality.

No doubt that Indian woman has shown its excellence in every field. In past also we had great leadership of Mrs. India Gandhi, Sarojni Naidu, Razia Sultan, Rani Ahilya Devi, etc. But this all has seriously changed the picture. Still here in India we can see many ancient rituals and customs are practiced which brutally kills the women on both physical and mental front. Yes, in India only brutal and frequent gang rapes happens where CM of a state is a lady. Gender discrimination is a very common thing in our country and crimes against women also involve acid attack, honor killing, domestic violence, burning for dowry, etc.

Women Empowerment

As we all talk about women empowerment it is essential to understand what it is actually. For me women empowerment means creation of such a society and environment where women are independent to take their own decisions. Building up a society where women are treated equal and are free to act in a way they want, it is giving them moral, social and constitutional. Empowerment is a process in which a women can achieve equal participation in the decision. The biggest threat to peace in every society is poverty. It has been a major issue in declination of the women position in the society. Due to poverty women are exploited as domestic maids, wives and care taker of the kids or house and their income is also utilized by their family members and husbands.

According to one of the surveys a horrifying picture of Andhra Pradesh came out according to which this state itself accounts for half of all sex trafficking case in India, the majority involving adolescent girls .As per the government records 3,00,000 women and girls have been trafficked for sex exploitation . Surprisingly the state is prosperous in terms of per capita income but is also a home of many poor people. Another ill impact of poverty is that girls and women are forced for bagging and carrying out other work for fulfilling the needs of the family and are not allow to study. If poverty was not a big issue then every girl child and women is allowed to fulfill her dreams and desires and is not subjected to the sex exploitation. One of the biggest hurdles in the upliftment of women in society is the customs of the society and mentality of the people. The customs like dowry, purdah system, preference to male child are responsible for the declination of woman in the society. As in many parts of our country till date dowry is practiced so girl child is considered as burden on the family. And this has only lead to female feticide. According to the present statistics there are only 877 females on per thousand male in Haryana.

We live in a society where our country is called “Bharat Mata”, we worship goddess Lakshmi, Durga and Saraswati for wealth power and knowledge but we don’t treat females in our family, society as our equals. This is mere dichotomy of the Indian society. Women are given no rights in decision making process of families and society. In our society even giving birth to a child is not a woman’s her decision so forget about the rest. In a male dominated society women are not allowed to take even breathe on her own. By practicing Purdah system she is not allowed to come before any male of society. She is considered as an instrument in a man’s hand with which he can fulfill all his physical and house hold requirements. To a great extent the mentality of our society is responsible for the declination of women in

After Independence government has taken many initiatives for increasing the literacy rate but still the gap between male and female literacy is very huge. Around 82.14% male are educated while only 65.46% female are literate in the country. Illiterate women are on the mercy of their husband or father and are not allowed to do anything on their own. Additionally they don’t know the position, the conditions and privileges women are enjoying across the globe. Girl child are not allowed to study as it is considered that they have to go at her husband’s house and her primary and sole duty will be to look after her husband and family so they are don’t need to be educated. Inspite of human rights and provision in Indian constitution women continue to the victims of exploitation. The mentality and presumption that future of a family will be preserved by the male child only has degraded the position of women in the society.

The only way for empowering women in the society is to educate them and let them know their value, place, hidden talent and power in them. This can only break the wall of exploitation, ignorance and negligence. Women in our society and culture are considered as the better half and this better half is in most vulnerable position in present context. Everyday news channels and newspapers are flooded with the news of sexual exploitation, molestation, rapes, trafficking and domestic violence against women .The question raises who is responsible for all this, it’s just judiciary system which is responsible for the crimes against woman. Certainly not, besides judiciary system there are many factors which are responsible for the crimes in the country. As we know that India is a land of various religions and thus practicing many customs, traditions and beliefs. This beliefs and male dominated society has given rise to a mentality according to which male considers themselves superior than females .A female start realizing this difference and discrimination very soon in her family only where her brother will be enjoying more privileges den her. These crimes can be eradicated never be stopped just by judiciary system. Society also has to play its role in it. From start only we need to educate our male family members that they should respect females. In our family and society we have to treat our daughters and sons equal. What is wrong will be wrong for both of them and their should not be any discrimination on the basis of

Steps Can Be Taken To Empower Women

 Give equality to women mentally; treat them as equal on mental level.

 Educate male child to respect and value females and on the same time educate girls to value themselves and raise a voice against anything wrong happening with them.

 Social taboos like dowry, purdah should be eradicated completely.

 Society should start looking females also a face of the family and not only the male child.

 Special encouragement should be given to such women and girls who strive for

excellence in any field despite of facing all the challenges.

 Double standard of worshiping a goddess and beating one’s wife should be prevented.

 Women in society should be encouraged for starting their own business and becoming financially independent by providing them loans.

The Road Ahead

In spite of legal and constitutional provisions aiming at eradicating gender discrimination and women empowerment, the plight of women is still far from improvement. To truly understand and implicate women empowerment their needs a change in society’s mentality. Males have to come out of their so called domain and start treating woman in their life as equal. By giving freedom to your daughters, sisters, wife men can help in changing the outlook of the society. Also women themselves have to raise voice and have to come out of the social taboos. They need to realize their values and have to start about themselves. Being in a family women can teach their son to respect a woman and can play a major role for empowering and upgrading the own gender. We just can’t depend on our judiciary system for this but we ourselves have to take step.

Swami Vivekananda once said “Arise away and stop not until the goal is reached. “Thus our country have to go a long way and have to write a glorifies future for women of our society by empowering them.

Author: Neha Dangra