Working women and home-makers in their late 20’s and 30’s today, have successfully moved on from being known as submissive to become positively assertive, self-reliant and proud of womanhood…
Quite recently, I travelled Air India to Delhi and back and on both these flights, I was pleasantly surprised to have two charming ladies in their 20s and 30s flanking me…
Four young women who were traveling for various reasons; One, a dentist, another a senior petroleum company executive, an IT professional and the fourth who had moved to Pune post her wedding.
These young women represented their generation that walks the talk in woman empowerment and freedom. Absolute independence in leading their lives, without any family interference is what they swear by and apparent from the conversation we had.
One of them is a small town girl who had carved a niche for herself in the IT industry. When asked about the situation of the girl child back home, she stated frankly, “girls are still discriminated and have to toe the traditional family line of getting educated upto graduation and end up finally in marriage.
I was lucky that my parents’ financial condition wasn’t good, so my mother encouraged me to study to become independent. Now, it is too late for them to insist on marriage.
I stay with my boyfriend in Pune and we have not discussed marriage. My parents who were initially outraged have accepted it now.’’
The homemaker married an IT professional last year and shifted to Pune from Delhi- She also had an independent air about her. We were to touchdown at Pune near midnight, yet, she had no expectations of her husband waiting to pick her up. When she boarded, she asked him not to bother about her dinner and that she would order in once she reaches.
Despite his insistence on coming to the airport to pick her up, she insists that she would take a taxi he should not stay up for her.
This would have been unheard of even a decade ago, as several woman had to portray her dependence on her husband for everything- even if she was a fiercely independent woman.
At Delhi, I spent two days with 29 lovely women, most of who were in their twenties and thirties.
We were all to be felicitated by Maneka Gandhi, Union minister of Women and Child Development with the ‘WebWonderWomen‘ honour, for amplifying our work through Twitter.
The amazing social work and sheer levels of these vibrantly attired young women effused their enthusiasm in leading a smart lifestyle while they worked hard and relentlessly for the betterment of society.
Some of these talented women included, Adhunika Prakash, a Puneite, who is presently residing in Bahrain with her husband who works there, left her three year old daughter, to attend the function in Delhi. She has founded a non-profit Breastfeeding Support for Indian Moms and started a Facebook Page to popularise it.
She has a whopping 90,000 followers and was selected in 2018 among five global leaders for $1 million award each by Facebook as part of its Community Leadership Programme. It all triggered off, when a young mother in a Delhi mall, who was breastfeeding her child, was admonished by the manager.
He asked her to go to the washroom to feed her infant. Outraged, she posted her humiliating experience on Facbook.
Adhunika read the post and was livid. Remarking on this she quipped “Would the mall manager eat his food in the washroom?
What audacity did he have to tell a mother who is breastfeeding her infant to do so? Surcharged with passion, her FB page propels mothers to be proud about breastfeeding their child. This is normal and no one has the right to look at it through any other eye. Her FB page members comprise pregnant mothers; mothers of breastfeeding children and even medical practitioners who can lend their expert guidance.
Adhunika now aims to work with hospitals in India to help train and support parents, particularly in rural areas. Soon she would be spending time at Facebook’s headquarters in Menlo Park (California), working with the team to help develop their community initiatives,” Facebook noted.
The other young lady, in her twenties is Srilekha Chakraborty, a Gender Rights Activist working with women adivasis in Jharkhand -helping them access health and body rights.
She joined Twitter recently to support her online campaign ensuring menstrual health services to young girls in Jharkhand. Her online campaign #padsonboard has met with its first big success as Air Vistara has started having biodegradable pads on their airline.’’
My recent tele-conversation with a mother of a daughter in her mid-twenties says it all- She called me up to say that there is good news and I promptly asked if her daughter’s marriage is fixed. She snapped, “Oh, that’s too small. She has been selected for a five-year PhD programme at an Ivy league university in the US’”
This was truly wow news and a telling tale of how and why ‘wedding wows’ have taken a backseat!
#All views expressed in this column are those of the author and Pune365 does not necessarily subscribe to the same.
That's Vinita Deshmukh, Senior journalist and RTI activist who believes in journalism that reflects the views and needs of the common man.
Get Real And Stay Relevant says Vinita,