International women’s day
THE phrase, ‘The hand that rocks the cradle rules the nation’, aptly defines importance of the mother, their roles and influence upon the children, who are the future pillars of the nation. As it is the mother who rocks the cradle and it is she who exercises her influence over the mind of her children towards moulding them with her noble qualities, significance of celebrating the International Women’s Day has been gaining momentum and acknowledged by all sections of the society. The international event held on March 8 is a day of celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call for accelerating gender parity. Genesis of International Women's Day is said to date back to the early 1900s where there was great expansion and turbulence in the industrialised world that saw booming population growth and the rise of radical ideologies. From a symbolic march in 1908 by about 15,000 women through New York City demanding shorter hours, better pay and voting rights, the said march saw gradual transformation to spurring women to become more vocal and active in campaigning for change. Presently, International Women's Day is a collective day of global celebration and a call for gender parity that involve government, NGOs, academic institutions, women's network and media organisations in supporting the movement and endorsing the agenda for women’s rights.
Thus the Day has spawned to not only celebrate women’s achievements, but also to spurring unity, advocacy and action for the socio-economic uplift of the women and their empowerment - and it continues to grow from strength to strength. Involving the women in the nation building process has been acknowledged worldwide as it the women, mothers to be specific, who are empowered to imprint the best and the worst in the mind of their children. As it is the mothers who are either held in high esteem for keeping their children away from evils or are scorned for any irresponsible acts of their children, no nation would prefer to ignore the former inherent characteristics of the women/mothers to properly guide the future pillars of the society. That lawmakers are also keen to tap such enviable qualities of the women could be assuaged from the various projects to educate and initiatives to empower the women so that they well equipped to discharge their responsibilities successfully, in addition to involve them in the nation building process through reservation of seats in the decision making bodies, from the grassroots level to the parliament. Compared with the neighbouring Nagaland, where recent events exposed the male chauvinism and consequently barred the women from joining the race for the urban local bodies’ election, Manipuri women have at-least been enjoying their constitutional rights to become members of decision making bodies under the 30 per cent seat reservation policies at the level of municipal and panchayat bodies. Manipuri women’s socio-political emancipation could also be comprehended from election of women in parliamentary and assembly elections in addition to their excellent performance in diverse fields, sports in particular, constantly putting Manipur in the limelight.