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Not so young Fashion Graduate From National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT), Delhi, India. Aspiring journalist. Amongst other eclectic hobbies, she likes writing and has written several poems and articles over her school and college life and now for a living. She would someday like to be be a more popular writer than just on her blogs. 'Tis a lady of grand splendor, who waketh in my bed every morning while the sun beckons her towards night...

Monday, July 08, 2013

It's a Girl

For long I have heard and read countless people  –
How can you think of equality of women when there are thousands starving in Africa, people dying in war, caste, religion etc etc etc?
How can you think women will be treated equally if they themselves don’t support their own sex? How can women be equal, when all they do is cook and have babies?
Our system is not such that we can have a girl child, and be happy about it, any idea how much money is spent on their weddings?
And I always end up questioning myself. How?

Badi Amma and Chhoti Amma,
One of the most independent, free thinking,
smart women I have met in my life
It is tremendous shock when you find your friends, the people around you, seemingly progressive families to hold the girls/women in their families back. Glad they did not kill them, but im sure had they thought it was legal they would have probably done it. Things are changing. In the metros – yes, things are changing. More and more people are happy having a girl child, sometimes more than a having a boy. I am truly glad that both my mother and my mother-in-law come from families that are accepting of man-woman equality. My grandmother has raised her three daughters alone in a suburb of Kolkata , as my grandfather was a lot away for his armed forces duties. My mother is law has been raised by her mom who was the Hindi HOD in the prestigious Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University, and Pitaji was almost always away to build AIR stations all over India. 

That’s just a handful of people. Consider this- 17 year old, living in Mumbai – how do you picture her. When I heard of Pooja (let’s call her that) I immediately pictured in my mind of this young, delightful girl, who goes to junior college, who goes to movies with her friends, probably wears jeans and T-shirts, goes to Chowpatty, has bhel and chaat, chats with her friends all night long on her mobile; basically all the clichés you can associate with being a teenager.

And here I was two minutes later being told that she was constantly in her salwar kameez, was not allowed to talk to her own brothers, was not allowed to come out of her room without a dupatta, was not allowed to wear make-up. In Mumbai. Her sister in law (Bhabhi) was a gynaecologist at a nursing home and had a uniform of trousers and shirt, which she had to change every day (without her husband’s family knowing) at the office while she went in a saree everyday to keep up pretences.  These are not small adjustments for the sake of the society. These seem to be just the tip of the iceberg of a much much worse scenario of how we treat our women.

In the video , Evan Grae Davis talks about a woman who has killed eight of her children because they were born into the wrong sex. Where does this nonchalance of killing your own children come from? How has this woman been brought up, in what society, to be completely oblivious to her own blood’s cries? How has humanity been ok with it? In a country that already suffers from a skewed up male-female ratio, and increasing amount of rape and prostitution, the only solution government can apparently think of is making pornography illegal and removing bikini mannequins. Like that’s our problem.

A tribal woman selling her wares at Jaisalmer
with her shy smile from under her purdah
(C) aparnamudi@gmail.com
When you grow up in a household where your sister is given half the amount of food you are given simply because you have a Y chromosome that kicked in a few weeks after your conception, men are not expected to respect the women around them. Centuries of atrocities against women have ingrained this thought into our society of the superiority of the male species... I’m glad they are developing scientific ways for men to reproduce, because if this goes on, they are going to need it – and soon.

Franklin Templeton Investments partnered the TEDxGateway Mumbai in December 2012.
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