Women in Idea of India - Daily Current Affair Article

References

March 8 is celebrated as International Women's Day all over the world.

Introduction

  • India is not just a country but a set of cultures, civilizations, and ideals, in which men and women have contributed equally in the making. Women have made memorable contributions in all aspects of Indian culture, society, science, and politics. In ancient times, women like Gargi, Appala have had a pleasant tradition and in modern times women like Kiran Bedi, Mamta Banerjee have contributed to the all-around development of the country.
  • The status of women in India has faced many major changes in the last few centuries. Women in India progressed on the path of principles of equality, freedom, and rights in modern times, from the status of equality with men in ancient times to the low-level life of the medieval period, as well as the promotion of equal rights by many reformers. History has been quite dynamic.

Indian women in ancient times

  • It is clear from the statues of Matradevi in the Indus Valley Civilization that women were respected in this civilization.
  • In the Vedic period, women had the right to initiate education like men, in this period, the name of women like Gargi, Appala has been prominent. The description of Aditi (Mother of Gods) is also found in Vedas.
  • Polygamous and polygamous marriages were in vogue during this period.
  • With the coming of the Mahajanapada period, due to the increase in the state and the trend of war, the desire for female children decreased but in this period also women were respected.
  • The famous King Gautami-son Shatakarni of ancient India was probably related to the maternal dynasty. According to evidence, Prabhavati was an influential woman in the Gupta period.
  • But there is a decline in the status of women as a whole. The respect that women got in the Vedic period decreases with the coming of the feudal period, but at this time as a wife and mother, women were being respected in the Indian society.

Indian women in medieval times

  • The status of Indian women in society declined further during the medieval period. By this time the ban on sati, child marriage, and widow remarriage had reached its peak in India.
  • "Parda system and Jauhar was a practiced among the Rajputs of Rajasthan. In some parts of India, Devadasis or temple women suffered sexual exploitation. Polygamy was in vogue, but the practice of polyandry had come to an end.
  • Despite these circumstances, some women achieved success in the fields of politics, literature, education, and religion. Razia Sultan became the only female monarch to rule Delhi. Empress Durgavati of Gond, Chand Bibi of Ahmednagar fought against Akbar, the greatest power of immediate India.
  • Akbar's foster mother Mahamanga had a good influence on Mughal politics during Akbar's era. Jahangir's wife Nur Jahan used the royal power effectively and established herself as the real power behind the Mughal throne. The Mughal princes Jahanara and Jebunnisa, Roshan Ara, etc. used to participate in Mughal politics.
  • In the personality formation of Ranapratap and Shivaji, the names of their mothers Jayavanta Bai and Jijabai respectively are taken with respect.
  • Along with this, Meerabai, Maharani Padmini has been effective women of this period who have influenced society, politics, and the path of devotion.

Women in the colonial period

  • Women like Queen of Kittur princely state in Karnataka, Kittur Chennamma, queen of coastal Karnataka Abbakka Rani, Queen Rani Lakshmibai of Jhansi, Begum Hazrat Mahal, co-ruler of Awadh, not only showed their administrative qualities but also with the British and other European powers.
  • Queen Ahilya Bai Holkar of the Holkar dynasty was skilled in the economy, polity, administration, military skills.
  • Begum of Bhopal was also included in some notable women rulers of this period.Shee did not adopt the purdah system and also underwent martial arts training.
  • Over the years, many common men including women such as Kadambini Ganguly, Annie Besant, Sucheta Kripalani, Kasturba Gandhi, etc. contributed to the Swadeshi Movement, Non-Cooperation Movement, and Quit India Movements.
  • Emphasized Savitri Bai and Maharani Nari Shiksha of Cooch Behar. Many women like Durga Bhabhi had contributed to the freedom movements irrespective of their lives. In this period, with the ban on Sati practice and encouragement of widow remarriage, women got new energy that they used to make the nation independent.

Women in post-independent era

  • In post-independence India, with the ideals of freedom, rights, equality, women of India are doing well in all the fields.
  • Among the successful leaders of India, Mrs. Indira Gandhi is named with respect. Pratibha Devisingh Patil also held the highest post in the country.
  • Even today, sisters Mayawati, Mamta Banerjee, Sonia Gandhi, Vasundhara Raje have proved that the administrative capacity of women is also helpful in nation-building.
  • In the field of sports, Mithali Raj, PB Sindhu, Sania Mirza, Saina Nehwal are named prominently. Even in the corporate world, the names of Nita Ambani, Arundhati Bhattacharya, Chanda Kochhar, Indira Nooyi are famous.

The conclusion

Recovering from historical backwardness, the women of India have also set a record in all fields, from politics to sports, acting, arts, journalism, administration, and have contributed to the making of India. The contribution of these women in bringing India to the pinnacle of supremacy will be unforgettable.

General Studies Paper 1
  • Indian Society
  • Women's role and women's organization

Mains Question:-

  • Discuss the role of women in various historical aspects of India?