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All violence is male-generated: Maneka Gandhi

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New Delhi:  India is undoubtedly a patriarchal society but is it fair to be sexist?

Courting controversy, union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi on Monday said that the role of men in gender sensitization was critical since “all the violence is male-generated”.

The role of men in gender sensitization was the most critical since “all the violence is male-generated. We have introduced (the concept of) ‘Gender Champions’ in schools, under which boys who have been respectful and helpful to girls will be rewarded”, the minister said in reply to a question while interacting live with users on Facebook, as part of the ministry’s ‘#100Women’ initiative launched in July.

Under the initiative, the ministry has collaborated with the social media platform, Facebook, to identify 100 women across the country who made a difference to their communities.

During the time she spent on live chat in the digital space, Gandhi was asked many questions on children’s education, health and safety, crimes against women and other political issues, though she answered only a few of them.

As for the alleged rape of two Nepalese maids by a Saudi diplomat in Gurgaon in Haryana, Gandhi said the case was an “eye-opener” and added that the central government would see what safeguards could be put in place to prevent such incidents in future.

On the implementation of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005, the minister said, “We get periodic reports from the states and work with the National Commission for Women and the police.”

The ministry was also setting up ‘One Stop Centres’ called ‘Sakhi’, which would play an active role in helping women in trouble, she added.

On media sensitivity to women’s issues, she said, “I find the media more sensitive to women’s issues in India as compared with the situation abroad.”

Sometimes the media highlighted only one aspect of violence against women and gave an impression abroad that Indian society was insensitive to the fairer sex, Gandhi said, adding that the media response had also led to public awareness as well as many laws.

On the education system in the country, Gandhi, who is also an animal rights activist, said, “I think education should be more gender sensitive and certainly animal sensitive.”

Regarding the reservation given to children of economically weaker sections in schools, she said it was important to bring children from such background into good schools. Statistically, she said, India needed a school every seven minutes.

Speaking about the ‘#100Women’ initiative, Gandhi earlier said: “We all have had women in our lives who have made a difference; who have changed the course of our own lives; and who have left a mark on the entire community and changed it for the better.”

These women would be nominated on the ministry’s Facebook page. Those getting maximum recommendations would be shortlisted which would then be put up before a jury for selection of these 100 women.

To submit their nominations, people should visit the ministry’s Facebook page before September 30 and fill in the nomination forms.

The selected women would be hosted by President Pranab Mukherjee on January 22, 2016, the day when the prime minister had launched the ‘Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao’ programme this year.

With inputs from IANS

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70 Years of Independence But No Right to Live With Dignity for Women: National Commission for Women Data

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Right to live with dignity
Indian students shout slogans as they hold placards demanding stringent punishment for rapists during a protest in New Delhi, India, April, 23, 2013. VOA
Oct 3, 2017: India completes 70 years of Independence, yet women of the country fight for their ‘right to live with dignity’. Our women are still not free from the clutches of societal customs. According to the media reports (2016-17), the National Commission for Women (NCW) received maximum complaints under this category, ahead of rape or molestation.
The NCW is a statutory body appointed to safeguard women’s rights. The highest number of complaints registered by NCW were 4,373 under the ‘right to live with dignity,’ followed by dowry harassment (1,752), disrespecting the modesty of a woman (946) and violence against women (943), reported IndiaTimes.
“The NCW is founded upon the recognition that in a patriarchal society, women face a far greater degree of vulnerability and, hence, any effort to reform any law cannot go against this well-evidenced fact and reality and now argue that men are equally if not more vulnerable than women,” All India Progressive Women’s Association secretary Kavita Krishnan said, reported PTI.
[bctt tweet=”As much as Right to live is a physical right, it is equally imperative to exercise a right to live with dignity. ” username=”NewsGramdotcom”]
Many a times police personals ask women inappropriate and insensitive questions during investigations. It is startling to see that NCW department has registered 3,963 complaints of police apathy, which also top the cases of molestation or dowry.
Often women are compelled to marry against their choice. Indian women grapple with the right to choice in marriage and forceful arranged marriages that dominate consensual marriages in the Indian society. NCW received 337 complaints about women wanting the right to choose their own spouses.

In the famous conflict between Maneka Gandhi and Union of India, she challenged her impounded passport in the apex court. Maneka was issued a passport on 1976, and within a week, the same was impounded because of the public interest. A writ petition was filed with the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court of India gave a new light to Article 21 (III) by demonstrating that the right to live is not merely a physical right but encompasses the right to live with dignity as well.
As per the Article 21 of Indian Constitution:
No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to a procedure established by law.

Prepared by Naina Mishra of Newsgram. Twitter @Nainamishr94