Monday, July 29, 2013

Is being a girl a crime?.... a curse for the family?

I was watching a short film by Evan Grae Davis titled "It's a girl". According to him these are the 3 deadliest words in the world. He reinforces what I know just like millions ofwomen around the globe. Also, he talks about what women face in today's liberalised, privatised and globalised world. Oh, we have made moon almost our second home. We are reaching out to the other planets to find if life is possible there. In fact women, women of Indian origin have captained some of these projects. This is reality, there's reality of another kind too, the reality of female infanticide, gendercide and violence against women.

A WOMAN faces this violence right from the time she is in her mother's womb in the form of Female infanticide . Gendercide is a major concern in countries like China and India. The male to female ratio is as low as 120:100. Evan Grae Davis is a film maker and has been travelling around the world. He knows many unbelievable facts and has statistics to support them. He talks about a woman in South India who was married off to her brother in law as her sister could not bear a male child. She in turn had girl child one after the other. She killed the child right after her birth and did this 8 times. She showed the small heaps of soil where she had buried her children in the field close to her house. She had no emotions forget showing any regret while talking about the issue. But she touches us with the harsh reality of a woman's life especially in developing countries and among the less privilege. She says that she did not want her children to have a life like her own. Davis says that this story moved him the most, he felt shock and hurt.

ACCORDING TO UN, Violence Against Women is a huge public health issue and a violation of human rights. It results in a wide range of physical, mental, sexual and reproductive health issues for both men and women, compounded by women who are afraid to report the violence she faces. With little access to healthcare, education and opportunity, many women are left open to abuse.Up to one in three women experience physical or sexual violence in their lives.Violence against women is all about power. It is the attempted domination over her life by her abuser.Violence against women is NOT a private or family issue. It is a community and public health issue affecting not only the abuser and his victim but everyone around them.

Affluent societies also have their issues pertainingto women. There still is inequality in almost every field. Closer home, in India we have to deal with monsters such as the female infanticide, dowry and its evils. They are the topmost concerns both for the government and the society. There have been stringent laws against the two but that too look just drops in the ocean. Female infanticide is prevalent in some states so the government has made it illegal to determine the sex of the foetus. Our girls are still being killed for dowry. Yes we have progressed but whats the use when we still have this stigma attached to us. Our women don't feel safe in our cities or villages. Don't they deserve the little pleasures in life. Pleasure of living without fear, of having hopes and nurturing dreams or are the dreams, hopes and right to make choices meant just for the privileged? Is it a crime to be born as a girl? I have no answers to this... do you?

This takes me back to MY OWN LIFE. I was bornpre matureat just 7 months. My mother nursed me (literally) to good health. My family did everything possible to keep me alive. Mom was very young at that time; she always believed in me, her first child and had enormous faith and hope. She says that at One, I was one of the healthiest looking child around. Coming from this backgroundit amazes me to hear about such brutalities to little girls and the violence that women face.

The girl deserves a right to live, a right to live without fear and to soar in the sky like the falcon.... Can we give her that. Or is it asking for too much!

link to the video:

This post is written for the Idea Caravan and Indiblogger in association with Franklin Templeton Investments. partnered the TEDxGateway Mumbai in December 2012.
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