International Women's Day 2011 with some rural obvious women

12 March 2011
I attended the Discussion Forum for Women organized by FPAI, Dharwad, RAPID, SLIGS and Bharat Scouts, at the Bharat Scouts District Headquarters, Dharwad, on account of the centenary celebration of International Women's Day. The session helped me understand the deep rooted chasm between Law and Society.. Between Law and Justice. I understood the practical problems which change agents of society face, in order to bring even a modicum of change into the entrenched beliefs and assumptions in the societal mind. It is not as easy as it seems to be, to champion an alien thought and to see it being accepted and imbibed into people's lives.
Though there seems to be a trend towards westernization, India has not lost its essence; nor can it lose it, however stark the psychological pressure be. Today's youngsters have taken it for granted that India has already been westernized; or say, 'modernized'. Whereas, the truth lies in the fact that, we have a gross misconception regarding the meaning and definition of 'modernization'. If we feel that industrialization, privatization and the patent regime are the proud harbingers of modernization, then we are being some of the impeccable epitomes of 'educated' fools...
Being an Indian, and being a woman, more importantly, I have come a long way to realize that we have got a whole repository of values, 'modernization' and 'globalization' in their truest senses in the Indian scriptures..But, the saddest part of the story today is that we hanker after the West, without realizing the importance and value of being an Indian.
The West knows no 'Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam'...but, We, the Indians, were the proud owners of this concept of 'globalization' or the 'global village' eons and eons ago. And as far as the technological advancements of the West are concerned, I have come to realize (I say to myself, better late than never) that we were the practitioners of 'sustainable development' thousands of years ago..We did not want any bigwig scientist from the West enlightening us on the matter from his ivory tower..Though we had abundant supplies of cereals and pulses, we did not at all hurt our Mother Earth..I admit that things have become better now, in terms of the speed with which works get done..and also with respect to the amount of manual work which needs to be put in by us to get the work done..But, because of this 'advancement', we have a whole bag of diseases as a gift from Mother Nature...To explain this with a small but effective analogy, the home today is filled with gizmos and gadgets, unknown to the world of yore...Be it the mixer-grinder, the vacuum cleaner, air conditioner, et al. But, we almost always, fail to realise that they are causing more harm than good to our standard of life. The gadgets breed among us laziness never before witnessed in such huge amount, and some others cause us lead lonely lives, away from the society and the physical world. For example, the concept of online social networking serves to be the perfect paradox of sorts. It at once encourages and discourages 'social networking'.
So, if this is the present pathetic situation in the elitist social circle, there is a very different situation in the bottom of the pyramid of the Indian social set-up..Here, the people, are filled to the brim with inertia, complacency and lack of awareness. There is a general disregard for a sense of community and empathy.
The women at the workshop seemed to me representing such a part of society.
On the whole, I relished the cup of brimming hot taste of the society, raw, as it is.


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