There was a time not so long ago, when all we read were reports of atrocities committed against women across the country.
From sexual violence and dowry harassment to the lack of equal opportunity, India has it all. Yet, things are changing and changing for the good. There is perceptible progress that our society at large is making towards gender equality in most areas, say most activists and informed citizens.
From being an India that was obsessed with fair skin to a country that openly discusses burning issues like menstruation, public hygiene and sexual preferences, we have certainly come a long way.
Today, even adoption statistics point to a majority of girl children being given homes, unlike the past
On the 71st Army Day parade this year, Lt Bhavana Kasturi led 144 male personnel and became the first female officer to lead the Indian Army’s Service Corps (ASC) contingent.
Or for that matter, Laxmi Narayan Tripathi who is the first transgender to represent Asia Pacific in the UN.
Gender inequality does exist, yet, we have certainly moved on from where we were, say these spirited Pune women who shared their thoughts with Pune365.
“Very recently, Dhanya Sanal became victorious on India’s fight against gender discrimination by trekking on Agasthyakoodam mountain in southern Kerala, where earlier only men were allowed.
But, we did see a huge fiasco when a group of women wanted to revoke their right to worship their idol on another temple barring womEn of “menstruating age” to do so.
There are always various people of diverse ideologies looking at a point with different perspectives. But doesn’t it reflect the openness of the ‘male dominated’ society towards being welcoming to its women?
I do believe that step by step, we are reaching places and often, do not have to play the women card to prove a point. An individual’s capability is recognised and that is a stepping stone,” smiles Radha Srivastav, a team leader at a leading city corporate.
In the past three years, 60% of the children adopted in India (69% in inter-country adoptions) were girls.
Suchitra Manik, (name changed to protect privacy) an auto driver, shares how she went from being a slave at home to an independent working woman.
“After my husband passed away and left me with three children, I had two choices, either, beg on the streets with my children, or step up and take charge.
I decided for the latter and tried gathering funds to buy a vehicle. Initially, I was driving someone else’s three-wheeler, but after two years, I was able to buy by own.
It is liberating to just realise the fact people do not avail your services with pity, but react normally as they would to our male counterparts. I am today able to educate my kids in a government run school and provide them with three decent meals,” adds Manik.
“I am the fourth girl child but wasn’t denied education because of it. My parents aren’t rich enough, but giving us a decent lifestyle was what they always wished for.” Never did they ever want a son, says Harmeet Kalsi, a high school graduate.
Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet @KaurKaur18
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