WOMEN EMPOWERMENT

Gokul P Menon

INTRODUCTION

Women Empowerment is a matter of utmost importance in the present world, especially in a country like India. A vast majority of women in our nation are oppressed. The condition is such that women are caged amidst the four walls of a house. Many of them are deprived of their basic freedom to make a choice about their education, profession and even marital matters. They are beaten up, treated like servants and not allowed to chase their dreams. It is high time for the society to get over these thoughts and ensure equality among the genders.

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In the nation which has developed in all aspects after Independence, the security of women is still a major threat. Though the rates have considerably reduced, female foeticide continues in some parts of the nation. There are cases wherein women are not given access to basic education.

What is the reason behind all these physical and mental tortures?

The harsh reality is that women are considered inferior. They are always restricted from following their passions and goals. This thought needs change. Equality among genders should be ensured so that all of us can enjoy equal rights and opportunities in a country like India.

Women Empowerment aims to create a platform where women are free to make decisions for their personal well-being as well as for the society. It would offer an arena which ensures that women are not deprived of their basic freedoms, which includes freedom of speech and expression.

Mentioned below are few of the reasons why Women Empowerment is the need of the hour:

Female foeticides In a few parts of India, a girl child is killed before she is born just because of the thought that she would bring bad luck to the family. This is exactly the reason why gender determination using ultrasonic tests have been made illegal in India.
Basic and higher education Due to the feeling that women are inferior, they are not allowed to choose a profession based on their educational qualification. This is not because they are unfit for the same, but because of the thought that they are meant to stay at home.
Profession There are cases wherein a girl child is not given access to basic education. Girls in various parts of the nation who have achieved basic education are not allowed to go for higher education as well. However, this scenario is slowly vanishing.
Physical and mental torturing Women, especially housewives, are physically and mentally tortured in their houses by their husbands. This has become a common scenario.

 

These are some of the many reasons why women empowerment is important. Preconceptions and misconceptions have created an image in the minds of the people that women are meant to be servants in the house and should not be sent for a job or even allowed to make a choice about their education.

Providing awareness: A section of the people in India are not aware about the advancements in the fields of education, technology or even in professional aspects, hence they always stick on to their feeling that women should be considered inferior. Awareness should be given to them. They should be made to understand that the time has changed and that women should now be set free both physically and psychologically.

NGO can center on basic skills especially in rural areas prior to their prep education. Study after study shows that low-income children enter school having heard 30 million fewer words spoken than their middle-class peers. A limited vocabulary makes it difficult to learn to read when children have never been exposed to the words. NGOs can foster the growth in underrated areas by appointing better qualified staffs in schools.

Providing reservation-based job opportunities: A percentage of reservation for job opportunities should be given to women so that they are employed according to their qualification. This would provide them a platform to showcase their talent to the society. This would also change the perception in the minds of the people that women are not to be caged inside their houses.

Giving importance to co-curricular and extra-curricular activities Equal importance should be given to co-curricular and extra-curricular activities for girls, which includes sports. Women like SaniaMirza, SainaNehwal, PV Sindhu, etc. have shown us that women can excel if properly trained.

Compulsory education: Compulsory education should be ensured for girls, which provides them an opportunity to choose their profession at a later point in their lives. This also helps them learn moral values including socialization, sympathy and empathy.

Being a feminist: Last, but not the least, we should teach everyone to be feminists. Feminists are those people who agree with the advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the genders. This does not mean overpowering men, but instead, treating both the genders as equal. This would be the right step for women empowerment.

Following these measures, women empowerment can be made a reality.

MEASUREMENT OF WOMEN EMPOWERMENT

Women Empowerment can be measured through the Gender Empowerment Measure (GEM). This shows women's participation in a given nation, both politically and economically. It is tabulated and calculated by keeping a track of the share of seats in parliament held by women; of female legislators, senior officials and managers; and of female profession and technical workers; and the gender disparity in earned income, reflecting economic independence. Countries are ranked based on this information. Other measures like Gender Parity Index and the Gender-related Development Index (GDI) take into account the importance of equality and female participation.