5 Basic Rights That Women Across The World Are Deprived Of

Fundamental Rights are but basic human rights that allow a person to live with dignity. Depriving basic rights of one particular gender based on whatsoever reason can never be justified.

Every year we celebrate women’s day with great enthusiasm and fervour. On one side, with each passing year, a new theme is introduced to kick start this day and on other side we also face equally devastating issues affecting girls and women alike. When we look at the future from a broader perspective, it is apparent that the root level issues still continue to remain unanswered. And like it is said – no house can stand still for years without a strong foundation; no progressive approach is possible unless the issues at the ground level are acknowledged and addressed in the right manner.

According to UN Sustainable Development Goals, any issue pertaining to women is considered as a challenging one. And it is on account of this that an entire goal- SDG 5 is dedicated to Gender Equality, with the aim to end any sort of discrimination against women and girls by the end of 2030. The question is whether we have made a move towards that direction yet?

Well, while a select set of society is moving forward with progressive thoughts, the other set is still struggling to achieve basic human rights. The goal to achieve those rights may appear as a bigger task to conquer but it is definitely not an impossible one. What is required is that first, we need to start addressing the issue. And here “We” starts with us!

UN SDG 5 focuses on 5 main issues pertaining to women such as gender disparity, gender-based violence, eliminating child/forced marriage, equal opportunities and participation in leadership, sexual and reproductive rights.

Women and the never-ending gender disparity

Even though we are ahead of our time, we are still delving into the term gender disparity every now and then. According to UN gender disparity data, it will be another 131 years to end gender disparity. Right from education to equal job opportunity the struggle is long and unending. Gender disparity here comprises of any and all forms of discrimination against women and girls that deprives them from fundamental human rights.

Women and all pervasive gender-based violence

According to the National Crime Records Bureau, an estimated 228,650 incidents pertaining to gender-based violence were reported in 2011 which further increased to an alarming number of 428,278 reported incidents in 2021, a devastating 87% increase! Violence against women and girls is a global issue. With increase in cognizable crime against women, the safety of women is under severe threat. Rape, murder, dowry related violence and death, abetment to suicide, kidnapping and indecent representation of women are some of the cognizable offenses against women.

Each year organizations run campaigns and organize programs to create awareness on GBV. However, data tells us a different story all together!

Women and eradication of Child marriage/Forced marriage

With our foot now planted firmly in the 21st century, we are yet to eradicate few irrational practices from the past. Child marriage is one of them. Even though the law mandates punitive measures against child marriage, the estimated number of child brides in India are more than 24 million approximately. Child marriage leads to rape, high risk pregnancies and related health issues, emotional and economic distress. Child marriage not only robs a child from childhood but also robs the child of a bright and beautiful future.

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Women and the opportunity in Leadership/Decision making

There is a say in every Indian household that women are the home minister of the house, she is the one who is a good decision maker when it comes to running an entire house, managing the financial aspects. However, the story is completely different when a woman is considered for a leadership position. It is a sad plight that women are still not looked upon as a correct choice when it comes to any leadership or decision-making position despite of their ability and qualifications. Despite technology and corporate companies making their presence virtually in every nook and corner of our country, the role of women in leadership is still under scrutiny. How will that lead us to progress when we deprive an entire gender from progressing?

Women and reproductive rights

We come across slogans and campaign taglines like “My Body My Rights” and “My Body My Choice” to create awareness about sexual, reproductive as well as abortion rights of a woman. However, the need to create awareness itself means we are heading towards a wrong path when it comes to women rights. It’s a basic common sense to understand that it’s an individual rights of a person to have complete control over one’s body, particularly women who undergo so many changes in many phases throughout their lives, right from menstruation to menopause. To acquire basic rights like sanitation and hygiene, menstrual hygiene, pregnancy and abortion shouldn’t be a struggle. It is a fundamental right!

Fundamental Rights are but basic human rights that allow a person to live with dignity. Depriving basic rights of one particular gender based on whatsoever reason can never be justified. Women and girls make half of the world’s population representing half of world’s potential. However, we are still nowhere close to any significant progress as we come closer to winding up sustainable development goals in the year 2030!

Image source: by Maitreya Shah from Studio India and by VikramRaghuvanshi from Getty Images Signature, both Free for Canva Pro

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About the Author

Sheeba Vinay

Writer/Literary Agent/Lawyer In Making. I write to stay sane, and when not writing you can find me binge watching crime documentaries. Hopelessly in love with Jane Austen, Books and Tea! [email protected] read more...

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