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Essay, Paragraph or Speech on “Women’s Liberation in India” Complete English Essay, Speech for Class 10, Class 12 and Graduation and other classes.

Women’s Liberation in India

 

Since the previous century onwards, a deep concern over the rights and status of women has marked the Indian political thinking. The impetus was provided by the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi who had categorically stated, “Woman is the companion of man, gifted with equal mental capacities. She has the right to participate in every minute detail in the activities of man and she has an equal right of freedom and liberty with him….”

By sheer force of a vicious custom, even the most ignored and worthless men have been enjoying superiority over women, which they do not deserve and ought not to have. Many of our movements stop half way because of the conditions of our women. Much of the work done does not yield appropriate results. Our Merl Shakti which was regarded as next only to God, is now downtrodden, starved and relegated to the lowest rung of status in Indian society.

Those who had framed our Constitution took the first step in the right direction. They provided gender equality in the matters of economic, social and political significance as a fundamental Right to Indian women, who roughly form one-sixth of the world’s female population. India is one of the few countries which have a highly creditable record with respect to the enactment of laws to protect and promote the interests of women.

In fact, much legislation has been passed. We can take a look at the impressive list of such laws, ranging from Dowry Prohibition Act, Marriage and Succession Act of different religious groups, Indecent Representation of Women Act, Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, Family Courts Act, etc. These laws have, however, not yielded as effective and uniform results as they were expected to.

Reports of child marriages, dowry harassment, dowry deaths, eve-teasing and molestation at workplaces bear a glaring testimony to these observations. More important is the factor that the social laws have turned out to be far ahead of social practices prevalent in the country. Indeed, there does exist a hiatus between the laws on women’s rights and social sanctions necessary to make these a reality. There is also a host of recognizable differences between our rural and urban women so far as attitudes, aspirations, accomplishments, abilities and access to judicial remedies are concerned.

The issue of reservation of women in the Lok Sabha to the tune of thirty-three per cent was scrapped politely by the male chauvinist parliamentarians several times, during the last decades in the Lok Sabha. however, it was passed in the Rajya Sabha in March 2010. Unfortunately, the Women’s Reservation Bill which proposes to provide thirty-three per cent of all seats in the Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies, reservation, is pending. The Indian women had pinned their hopes on the issue but they lost the battle.

In spite of all these constraints, the status and conditions of the fair sex have undergone a great change during the past 60 years. f he top leaders have recognized that women are an integral part of all development and priorities and that all plans and programmes pertaining to women are not only vital for their survival, but also they are an investment in the country’s future that demands equality of justice for all and opportunities to all of her subjects.

The freedom movement can be treated as the launching pad for the development of women in India as everyone came out to oppose the British rule. The enactment of Constitution, granting equal rights to all the citizens, was another milestone. The setting up of the Central Social Welfare Board in 1953 and subsequent establishment of State Welfare Advisory Boards to promote and assist voluntary organizations in the field of welfare of women, children and the handicapped was a part of the good beginning.

All these culminated—by the late 1980s and early 1990s- – into the creation of a separate Union Department of Women and Child Development, State Department of Women Development, Women Development Corporation, National Commission for Women and State Commission in selected States. The women’s movement in the country got an impetus during the seventies. These included observance of the International Women’s Year in 1975, preparation of National Action Plan for Women, submission of the report of the Committee on Status of Women in India and the National Perspective Plan for Women (1988-2000). The Eleventh Five-Year Plan (2007-2012) also favoured the empowerment of women in its objectives.

Several programmes for empowerment of women have been started. The Mahila Samriddhi Yojana and Rashtriya Mahila Kosh have been set up to encourage the habit of thrift among rural women and provide credit in the informal sector. These schemes are expected to increase control of women over household resources and to inculcate self-confidence in them. Schemes for training for employment of women programmes for child development, health and nutrition, education as well as agricultural and rural development have been started.

The 73rd Amendment of Constitution in 1992 which had reserved one-third of seats for women in Panchayati Raj institutions is a major landmark in the field of political empowerment of women. As a unique experiment in the world, these measures will go a long way in improving the social and economic conditions of the Indian women who constitute about half the population of our country. The United Progressive Affiance weld a step forward and got the Women Reservation Bill that proposes to reserve one-third of Parliament and legislative assemblies’ scats for women passed in the Rajya Sabha, though it remains to be passed in Lok Sabha.

In the first Parliament, the representation of women in the Lok Sabha was to the tune of 4.4 per cent. In the present Lok Sabha fifty-nine women are MPs, which form 13.80 per cent of its total strength. Once the women become the law-makers, the circumstances are definitely going to change in their favour. Several barriers have been broken by Indian women and they have entered male bastions. Doctors, engineers, lawyers pilots and defence personnel are some of the examples of such professions, which were hitherto deemed to be the exclusive operational zones of the stronger sex.

India has the distinction of having a woman Prime Minister for a long period. Besides, many women have held governmental positions. At present the president of India, speaker of the Lok Sabha, and the leader of opposition are women. Although tremendous amount of work has been done for the empowerment of women, yet they are having unequal opportunities of employment as compared to men. Nearly 15.3 per cent of the total workers in the organised sector are women. The rest are employed in the unorganized sectors—mostly in agriculture, household industry and services. This shortcoming is being sought to be overcome through women’s vocational training, informal skill training and more sophisticated training schedules in technical institutions. The ministries of agriculture, Industries environment and science and technology run special schemes for women’s training for giving them employment.

Women’s literacy is another indicator of the status of women which has improved after Independence. The literacy rate for women at the time of census in 1901 was a meagre 0.60 per cent. It rose to 8.86 per cent in 1951 and in 1991 it jumped to 39.42 per cent and in the census of 2001 showed 54.16 per cent of literacy among ‘them. Women literacy shot up to 65.46 per cent in Census 2011.

During the last three decades, several voluntary organizations and NGOs have come into existence in the country. They are mobilizing women by making them aware of their rights and preparing them for collective actions. They have acted like pressure groups, forcing the government to reorient its programmes to meet the challenges.

They can be credited with reshaping the strategies of socio-economic development and shifting their focus to real empowerment of the weaker sex. The Indian woman of the new millennium would take care of her family, children and spouse. She would also work hard in offices and factories. She would work as a typist, DTP operator, doctor, engineer, scientist, social worker and surgeon. Tomorrow belongs to her as she has already achieved many landmarks.

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