Why Are Women Still India’s Unfortunate Daughters

Posted by Siji Joseph
February 26, 2018

Although the culture and tradition of India is considered as ancient and revered all over the world, in this country women are worshipped as powerful goddesses and also constantly discriminated against in all aspects of life. In the recent Global Gender Gap report by World Economic Forum, India slipped 21 places and was ranked at 108, below China and Bangladesh. Under such bleak circumstances, women belonging to the low and middle class families suffer even more.

Problems That Still Plague Us

  • Sex discrimation
  • Female infanticide
  • Dowry System
  • Domestic Violence
  • High percentage of illiteracy

Among the aforementioned issues, domestic violence or Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is one that isn’t even properly recognised by our justice system. According to the recent survey, domestic violence has adverse effects on the victim’s mental health, and the numbers have doubled in the recent past. Women resort to using drugs and alcohol as a coping mechanism which results in poor physical health as well. Sexual and reproductive health is also at stake due to the increased instances of domestic violence against women leading to many more cases of HIV.

The State of IPV In India

The Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act of 2005 is in place to empower women to seek justice, but chances are that a woman from an impoverished background has no idea about the aids at her disposal. According to the United Nations Population Fund Report two-thirds of Indian married women between the age of 15-49 are victims of beating, rape and forced sex. Indian states show a considerable variation in violence against women ranging from 6%(Himachal Pradesh) to 59%(Bihar).

Fixing The Problem

  • There is a need for more inclusive alternatives to have collective resolution mechanism.
  • Nari Adalath (Women’s courts in various states for a quick redressal mechanism to issues)
  • More branches of women’s resources centers (Rajasthan)
  • Shalishi (West Bengal) – A community based response to domestic violence.

Last Words

Violence against women is an extreme manifestation of gender inequalities. Freedom from violence must be stated as a necessary component of empowerment. Providing good education and  efficient government support scheme to sweep out these issues are the need of the hour. There must be investment in specific learning and gender analysis processes and their social role can be enhanced to tackle the widespread problem. Thus making women India’s fortunate daughters.