India is a country with a legendary diversity in terms of religions, cultures, languages and beliefs. Indians are well known for their humane emotional sentiments and love, which they have towards others, regardless of anything. Displaying feelings of love, care and affection towards our loved ones, family members, friends and strangers is what we are taught. We learn more from our socialisation than from any school, college or university.
An individual avails education which further helps them in getting employed and living a comfortable life. But they imbibe most of their values and beliefs from their families. Our parents teach us the meaning of loving and respecting others. But unfortunately in our society in the name of honour, parents also kill their children if the children fall in love with someone from a different caste, community or religion. They tend to let go of their ability to differentiate right from wrong and for the sake of pride, end up committing the heinous crime of honour killing. Why do”what society will say or log kya kahenge” matters or affects them to such an extent that they lose their senses? Why does Indian culture has a norm that only parents get to decide whom their children will get married to?
India is a modernised, digitalised, globalised, industrialised and a developing country and is the third largest and the fastest growing economy in the world. It’s a paradox that even as we climb the ladder of development to become a modernised country, many evil practices like discrimination, untouchability and honour killings still continue to prevail.
Caste system still dominates many facets of people’s lives; discrimination based on caste and religion persists in our society, despite India being a secular country. This proves that people are yet to incorporate the principles of equality, liberty, justice and fraternity enshrined in our constitution into their lives. There are still various backward, underdeveloped parts where people continue to hold on to their orthodox beliefs and unwritten norms and social code of conducts devoid of any rationality and logic. These are the beliefs or behavioural systems that often lead to crimes like honour killings and stigmatise intercaste and interfaith marriages. Largely the perpetrator of such murders is the bride’s family, in which usually the groom and bride both are violently put to death, and the assailants don’t even bother about the law and the consequences.
Education, awareness and sustainable urbanisation is the only way of changing such conservative beliefs. Happiness emotions and peace should be given utmost priority over redundant archaic customs at any point in life. India can fully progress in the real sense only when the development is holistic and incorporates social, cultural, economic and political dimensions of the society. Education has been viewed as a means of personal change and social transformation. It’s the only agent for social change and changing people’s mindsets and thereby their lives.