Vrushali Uppin|| DeccanDigest: Women Empowerment- refers to creation of an environment for women where they can make decisions of their own for their personal benefits as well as for the society. It’s a Universal Phenomenon. Women comprise almost 50% of the world’s population. It’s Important because it can lead to overall development of the society, improves a country economy, reduce the rate of domestic violence, reduces illiteracy and poverty etc
Women Empowerment in the field of POLITICS
When I first showed my interest to join politics to my family and friends I was out rightly advised me not to even think of taking it into consideration. Even today the word politics is seen with lot of cynicism negativity and criticism. Nevertheless I succeeded in stepping into the world of politics Our Great Leaders stated thought provoking quotes on women as such
“You can tell the condition of a nation by looking at the status of its women”- Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru, And Smt. Indira Gandhiji wisely Quoted “To be liberated women must feel free to be heself , not in rivalry to man, but in context to her own capacity and her personality”
Even before United Nations defined Womens Empowerment, Mahatma Gandhiji, Indian National Congress and few social reformers stirred the freedom struggle in such a way that it resulted in breaking the age old chains of exploitation of Indian Women. Indian National Congress awakened the civil and political consciousness among the Indian women and promoted them to actively participate in freedom struggle and eradicate the social evils which were obstacles to the womens emancipation
Many of our freedom fighters belonging ta INC like Sarojini Naidu, Anne Beasant, Rajkumari Amrut Kaur, Lakshmin Memon,Dr. Muthalakshmi Reddy, Indira Gandhi are live examples which shows the effort of congress party to bring women in the forefront. It was only because of the efforts of congress party Indian Women received Voting Rights.
Over the Process of time India learned to accept Women Leaders. Congress Party has had 5 women ( Sarojini Naidu, Annie Besant, Nellie Sengupta, Indira Gandhi & Sonia Gandhi) leading the party so far. Indias First Women Prime Minister Smt.Indira Gandhiji and Pratibha Tai Patil ji First Women President of India reflects that congress party had immense faith in womens potentials and also their liberal thinking in giving equal opportunity to women.
Our Constitution which is one of the finest document in the world gives women equal rights to both men & Women. Various articles in it safeguards the interest of women and put them at par with men. Under the Congress Rule at the centre many policies were made for the welfare of women. Few of which are as following:-
- Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act 1956
- The Dowry Prohibition Act 1961
- The Maternity Benefit Act 1961
- Medical Termination of Pregnancy 1971
- The Equal Renumeration Act 1976
- The Commission of the Sati (Prevention) Act 1987
- The Pre Conception And prenatal Diagnostic Techniques Act 1994
- Prohibition Of Child Marriage Act 2006
- Sexual Harassment of women at Workplace(Prevention & Protection) Act 2013
One of the Remarkable amendments made in the constitution of India was in 1993 when Congress Party was ruling the country. In 1993 the 73`rd and 74`th constitutional Amendment gave 33.33% reservation of seats at different levels in elections. This amendment is remarkable as it enables women to be leaders right from grass root level to the top most level.
Similarly many wide spectrum schemes were brought out which caters to women’s need of safety, shelter, security, legal aid, justices, information, maternal health, food & nutrition. Also economic sustenance through skill development, education and access to credit and marketing were formulated and implemented by Congress.
Talking about Smt. Indira Gandhi ji who was Called Iron Lady of India made her mark globally as one of the most powerful women political leader. This is will continue to inspire many women aspiring to be leaders not on in the field of politics but also many other avenues for the generations to come. Her legacy is an unforgettable one. She Surpassed the Men Centric Political field and assertively participated and served our country with grit and determination.
Our Former AICC President Sonia Gandhi Ji too is a symbol of consistent determination and hard work. She served the post for a record of 19 years. Under her leadership Congress led UPA won a massive majority in 2009 General elections. She is also considered as most powerful women political leaders by various agency listings and magazines.
To summarize the INC has tirelessly worked for women empowerment. Now it is the responsibility of the India Society to benefit out of the listed rights and privileges chalked out for women and treat Men and women equally
Feminism isn’t about making women Strong or bold. Women by nature are stronger. It’s about changing the perception with which they are looked at and hear them out.