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Raising Voice as "ONE"

Registered Date November 30, 2016 Read 517
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Gayathri R. Menon, Scranton Scholar of Union Christian College in India

“I speak not for myself, but for those without voice” said Malala Yousafzai, the youngest ever Nobel prize laureate. She’s a symbol of how young girls and women, across the world have to struggle to win her rights and dream of better world where they could live freely. Violence against women is worldwide, yet still hidden problem. Every form of violence threatens all women and limits our ability to make choices about our lives. So it’s important that women, fight for this cause as ‘One,’ raising their ‘Voice as One.’


Women’s rights are essentially the rights that promote a position of legal and social equality of women with men. Tracing through history, we always find that women are always subjected to extreme prejudices and injustices only because they’re born as ‘a woman’! What we faced were the atrocities of a patriarchal society, which oppressed women and their rights. As the famous saying goes, “women’s rights are human rights ” which means women around the world are entitled to all these rights but, women and girls are still denied of them, simply because of their gender. Essentially women’s rights as put forth by the United Nations include the right to live, free from slavery and discrimination; to be educated; to own property; to vote; and to earn a fair and equal wage.


To belong to a country with such diversity of culture and people as in India are a proud thing but it’s the same ‘India’ which has often seen cruel and inhumane practices for the sake of culture.  And the far increasing rates of women being subjected domestic violence and rape are a frightening thought to girls and women in India. The Delhi Gang rape which caught international attention is one amongst them. As a girl, I’ve had experiences wherein there were restrictions about choosing my clothing and how my wishes to travel, career choices were denied due to the only reason of being a girl. A much more disturbing fact was, when, some of my closest friends were denied opportunities to higher education for the sake of marriage. In India, there’s a far more distressing problem of ‘dowry’, a custom still abided by many families. Girls and women are human beings and not animals that are to be bought or sold!


These issues can’t be dealt individually and it’s group efforts from both men and women that’ll put a stop to violence against women. Personally, I look up to the aspiring women leaders and social activists we’ve had. These distressing issues can’t be solved by a single individual but by way of creating young leaders, who are responsible and responsive to change ways of culture and very thinking of this patriarchal society. Growing up in a state that has always supported women empowerment, I feel the true empowerment arises within. It’s up to us to realize our potential and achieve our personal goals. Any hindrance that comes forth could be solved by our willingness and if one’s rights have been denied, there are law and policy made by the government which is ensuring that we, as women, as young girls, could lead a life we dream of. The constitutional and legal rights in India have been strengthened for this purpose. I am reminded of the several NGO’s that has come up for this reason; ‘Bodhini’ which is a notable non-governmental organization has come up with the slogan of “Freedom from Fear”.


“When the whole world’s silent, even one Voice becomes powerful” said Malala Yousafzai, who’s an unwavering source of hope to all future women leaders. What matters most is our awareness and responsiveness to any situation when a woman is harassed or tortured on the basis of her gender. Let’s put an end to this by raising our voice, be it our homes or streets, let us believe and work as “One” towards a better, free world!