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Build favourable environment for women

This refers to the editorial, “Safety and dignity: These are every woman’s right” (June 20). It is shameful that India has now become the fourth most dangerous place for women in the world. The large number of incidents of crime against women confirm the fact that they are neither safe within nor outside their homes. Even parents do not show any mercy when they kill their daughters in mother’s womb. The editorial says that out of three million prostitutes in India, 40 per cent are children. Will these figures shake the conscience of our political leaders, and all hues of activists?

Despite the fact that India has some substantial laws to check crime against women, the unchanging feudal mindset of people and the lack of political will to implement the laws have not yet been able to emancipate women of this country. Crimes like rape, domestic violence, female foeticide and infanticide, honour killings, sexual harassment at workplace, ill treatment of widows, dowry deaths, gender discrimination and human trafficking persist in the society. Persons with primitive instincts consider women as weak creatures. They consider themselves strong and brave when they commit violence against women.

The need of the hour is to take holistic measures against all these social evils that generate an environment against women. All customs and tradition that lower the dignity of women need to be studied and eliminated through structural changes in the society. Provide free quality education, health services and employment opportunities to all girls. Self-help groups can generate more income for them. Women’s organizations, elected women representatives, NGOs, activists and conscience-keepers should generate the much-needed political will among politicians. Religious leaders should reform their ways to emancipate women. Media and intelligentsia must help women in developing leadership qualities to face the rogue elements, both inside and outside home. The police should become the real protector of women’s rights.

Sudesh Kumar Sharma, Kapurthala


The survey conducted by Thomson Reuters' Trustlaw Women should make us sit up and take a serious note of the sufferings of women in our villages, towns and cities. This international study has ranked us with Afghanistan, the Republic of Congo, Pakistan and Somalia. I concur with the editorial that despite all our tall claims about the empowerment of Indian women, “the ground reality remains as dismal as ever”. In fact, we are a little behind Afghanistan, where Talibans openly flog women, chop off their ears and nose and bury them alive in a medieval fashion. In this country, most of our women still lead a helpless life with their limited liberty depending on the mercy of their family heads and village chieftain. The position of Dalit women and those from economically weaker sections is the worst in our rural areas. If we take a close look at the rape cases in North India in recent times, most of the victims reportedly belong to Dalit families. The perpetrators of the crime usually select soft targets in the countryside. The insensitivity of local police officials aggravates the sorrows of the helpless victims. When the world finds us killing our own daughters in the womb, misbehaving with women at home and workplace, and if it declares India the fourth most dangerous place for women on the planet, we need not feel surprised at all.

Dr Raj Bahadur Yadav,   Fatehabad

Respect for fair sex

This refers to the editorial, “Crimes against Women” (June 21). Readers in general, and women in particular, are horrified to read about the series of heinous crimes committed against women in Uttar Pradesh, especially when the state is headed by a lady Chief Minister, and that too a Dalit woman. Caste or no caste, a woman is to be respected. Dalit or upper caste does not make any difference; the question is of governing the state judiciously. The women folk from other states will desist from visiting even the holy places of UP, which is becoming notorious for criminal activities. This will be a big jolt to the tourism industry of the state.

Surabhi Airi, Vadodara


Unfair criticism

The middle, “A prayer to the doctor” (June 20) by Ravia Gupta, was very disgraceful. It has become fashionable to criticise doctors. One has to first clear a tough entrance examination after passing class XII, and then it takes a minimum of five and half years in order to get the MBBS degree, three years for MS or MD. In all, it takes nearly 10 years to become a specialist and 13 to become a super-specialist.

All these courses are tough and require academic endeavours along with long hours, sometimes 36 or more hours at a stretch of hospital duty. Is it a sin to wish for a good life after so much hard work? People want their doctors to be smartly dressed, live in a good house, have a good car; his clinic should be nice, with the best equipment.

He should always be available, but somehow all these services should be free of cost. At government hospitals, where treatment is almost free, not many facilities are there for patients, and the doctors have to waste much of their energy fighting the system to get things done for their patients. Though all doctors are not honest, by labelling all as cruel and greedy, the writer is sending a wrong message to the readers.

S K Sharma, Amritsar



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