Women Empowerment-a term so frequently used in today’s times has lost its relevance with reference to the actual sense of the term. The notion that such a term refers to just matters like educating the girl child, equality in matters of employment, inheritance, marriage, politics etc requires serious reconsideration. This is because ‘Women Empowerment’ nowadays is being just used as a phrase limited by these keywords.
Empowerment is a psychological process in which individuals think positively about their ability to bring a change and gain mastery over various issues at individual & social levels. This includes the notion of self efficacy i.e perceptions of competence, personal control & positive self image. Hence Women Empowerment in its totality must be guided by this basic aspect across areas of education, politics, economics etc.
In our country despite the presence of so many legislation, government schemes & CSR initiatives, do women really feel empowered in the sense that they are being equally treated by men in all spheres of life & whether they are able to manifest their feminine energies is the real question. Such a doubt arises because despite statistics showing the better academic performance of girls compared to boys in secondary & higher secondary examinations; women getting more degrees & jobs & their increasing role as consumers, entrepreneurs, investors etc, their share in the total workforce of the country is still very low. This is because the paternalistic attitude of the male population has not yet undergone much change. The current pattern shows both partners working outside home but not sharing housework & child care equally. There are instances where highly qualified women with a great pay are having to quit their job for family reasons.
Women Empowerment currently requires redressal of these issues which includes bringing both men & women into the fold of empowerment so that women in our country are no longer hesitant or apologetic about claiming a share & visibility within the family, at work & in the public discourse.