Author: Chhavi Chauhan, I Year of B.A.,LL.B(Hons.) From Amity university, Gurugram.
Co-author: Ariyan dey, I Year of B.Com.,LL.B From Nirma university.
From many ages, discrimination against girls in India has been going on. Several sections of the Indian society treated girl child as a burden even today. Mostly in the northern part of India, states like Rajasthan, Haryana, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh given very little or no opportunities to learn and grow in life for girls. Laws are being made to give equal status and opportunities to girls but in reality, the laws are not implementing effectively. From the last two decades, the concept of women empowerment has undergone a change from welfare-oriented approach to equity approach. The question might arise in your mind that what is this “Women Empowerment”?, it is the process that creates power in women to uplift themselves for equal status, to live a happy and respectable life in a society. To access opportunities in a variety of fields such as in education, profession, lifestyle, etc., without any restrictions and limitations then women will be called empowered. It also includes independency to take decisions which maybe crucial for their life, by this they feel empowered. It is also beneficial for the economic development of India. It also helps in increasing the political, spiritual, social, gender, educational or economic strength of individuals and communities of women.
In India the empowerment of women is dependent on many different factors which include educational status, geographical location, social status and age. Women’s empowerment policies exist at the national, state and local levels in various sectors, including education, health, , gender-based violence, economic opportunities and political participation. However, there are consequential gap between policy advancements and actual practice at the ground level.
NEED FOR WOMEN EMPOWERMENT
In our “Vedas Purana” of Indian culture, women is being worshiped such as SARSWATI MATA, goddess for wisdom; LAXMI MATA, goddess of wealth; SARSWATI MATA, for wisdom; DURGA MAA for power. Particularly in rural areas, the status of women in India needs to address the issue of empowering women.
Being a patriarchal society, traditionally in India women have the secondary role to play in every household. Physical health was the sole reason for not letting women work except household chore. There was a mentality that women are less productive than men and will not be able to cope up with the work pressure. It was also not considered good for women to get educated, as there was a concept that the girl will eventually marry and will go to different house or family, then what is the need of educating their girls it will a waste of money and time for them. This believe continued for years and was deteriorated to such an extent that the birth of a girl child was considered as a taboo. Which resulted into infanticide, dowry death, child marriage which lead to the gender inequality. However, since independence the policy makers have always been given a priority to the issues related to welfare of women.
STATUS OF WOMEN IN PRESENT
It is rightly said that “when you educate a boy you educate a person but when you educate a girl you educate a nation.” Today, women all around have proved this fact. A lot has changed for the women with time. Women, who now represent 48% of the total population, and the majority of them are getting access to education, and then employment on various fields. Whether it’s army, engineers, lawyers, doctors, politicians, etc. They all are shinning on their respective field like a sun. The spheres which used to male dominated once, women have created a niche for themselves in these fields. Be it Indra Nooyi being the CEO of PepsiCo, or Avni Chaturvedi being the first women fighter pilot, Fatima Bibi from being the first female Supreme Court judge of India, Mary Kom, Sushma Swaraj and many more are creating examples on a daily basis and inspiring today’s generation to believe in their hard work and not to limit themselves. In India, there has been a constant increase in number of female entrepreneurs like Ghazal Alagh founder of Mamaearth, Falguni Nayar founder of Nykaa, etc. they are leading businesses and becoming independent whether it’s a large sector or small they are becoming innovative in all.
PRESENT PROBLEMS OF WOMEN
Even today women are facing a lot of problems starting from their home itself. Majority of the parents teach the girl child some basic household chores right from the childhood with the mentality that someday she has to leave her house, but at the same house when there is a boy parents behave differently and the boy feels more freedom compare to the girl. In most of the Indian families a girl gets only 1- or 2-year time period to become financially independent or to have a well-established career, and if they unable to achieve that then the parents' start thinking about their marriage whereas a boy gets ample amount of time to get a well-established career. This creates an inequality right from the childhood in the girl’s mind and which she follows it and apply it to the future generations, this chain needs to be break. For breaking this chain education is very important for all age level so that the society will stop differentiating between women and men. There are many jobs and also courses which are mainly male oriented this also needs to stop, for which the female population have to come forward and secure their position be it in any job or any course.
Nowadays, women are more awaken about their rights and purpose in life and are greatly contributing towards the development of India and for themselves. Still, there is no denying in the fact that there are still a lot of loopholes in this issue which needs to be fixed with upmost priority. The Government has launched many schemes for women such as Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Yojana, Mahila Shakti Kendra, etc. for empowering women. Many NGOs are setting for the betterment of women in various fields like education, jobs, opening up about domestic violence and many more. The greatest need of the hour is to change social attitude towards women. Men have to stand against the women who are facing injustice. “When women move forward the family moves, the village moves and the nation moves”. It is essential as their thought and their value systems lead the development of a good family, good society and ultimately a good nation.