15th Mar 2017 08:03:PM Editorials
Eastern Sentinel Arunachal News

The news of forty-six Muslim clerics in Assam issuing a fatwa against up-and-coming singer Nahid Afrin, who was the first runner-up in the 2015 season of a musical reality TV show, asking her to stop performing in public is shocking not just for the brazenness but also the timing which comes at a time when the country is serious about women empowerment and emancipation.

Time and again there are diktats issued regarding dress codes for girls/women. One does feel sorry to see young school girls in Assam dressed in the traditional ‘Mekhela Chador’ inspired uniform and riding to school; many barely in their teens while their classmates of the opposite gender are dressed in the modern shirt and pant combo. It is sad to see the outright social conditioning carried out on these young souls. What exactly is the idea behind this is difficult to comprehend for a non native traveller like this scribe. 

India’s misogynist image across the word has been a contentious and discomfiting issue for the countless upwardly thinking citizens. Despite milestones achieved in various field women here are still somewhat of a second class citizen. 

Still a widely accepted practice ruled by social norms and gender roles, girls are still seen as a burden and not worthy of investing on. Often communities are resistant to welcome change. Other factors such as poverty, high costs of marriage, lack of education and other opportunities for girls that undermine change the practice. The mental-set-up sadly doesn't only confine to illiterate people, a prime example is the countless foeticide performed among the affluent educated households. 

Struggling to change the situation the Indian government has launched several programmes, the recent being the cash transfer scheme as incentive to encourage retention of girls in school. Despite helping keep girls in school and thereby delaying child marriage; but it has had no long-term effect as it did not contribute to changing parent’s mental set-up. 

Charity starts at home and it is important that parents and elders begin to understand and acknowledge the value of the girl child. Only when respect begins from within will the vicious external forces be annihilated.


Kenter Joya Riba

(Managing Editor)
      She is a graduate in Science with post graduation in Sociology from University of Pune. She has been in the media industry for nearly a decade. Before turning to print business, she has been associated with radio and television.
Email: kenterjoyaz@easternsentinel.in / editoreasternsentinel@gmail.com
Phone: 0360-2212313

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