March 8, 2013
Ratna De (Nag) and Kakali Ghosh Dastidar on International Women`s Day
Ms.Ratna Dey Nag:
Madam Speaker, at the outset, I would like to congratulate the hon. Minister Krishna ji, Hon. Leader of Opposition Sushma ji, our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, our UPA Chairperson Sonia ji, all the women across the world and my mother also. Today, the 8th March, is a special day for women, that is the International Women`s Day. It is an occasion not only to celebrate but also to review as to how women face problems to assert for their place in the world and to ensure equality. This year, the focus is on violence against women. Women have been at the receiving end for ages. We often talk of women empowerment, equality of women and what not. But, what is the reality? Women constitute 48 per cent of our country`s population. If we put women and children together, they constitute nearly 70 per cent of our country`s population. I would request all the hon. Members, cutting across the party line, to introspect about the improvement in the status of women in the last decade or so. Discrimination against women has been there for centuries. In one way, it reflects our social values and ethics. A lot of introspection needs to be done on rendering gender justice in real sense of the term. There is a need to change the mindset of man. As is said somewhere correctly, we need to educate man to empower woman. If we want to remove subjugation, suppression and discrimination against women, we need to tighten the laws and make them harsher. Penalties should be enhanced considerably and we should teach a lesson to everyone who indulges in crime or violence against women and who does not think of gender justice so that they would think twice before they act against women.
There is a need to ensure good governance. If governance is good, no one dare go against women. If message goes out that anyone who commits a crime or bents rules or laws is not spared, then we can see equality, gender justice and women empowerment.
In the end, I would request all of you to dedicate yourselves wholeheartedly to surge ahead in ensuring women empowerment in real sense of the term. Thank you, Madam.
Ms. Kakali Ghosh Dastidar :
Madam Speaker, please accept sincere appreciation from my Party towards your laudable efforts for empowering women. Today is a very special day for women all over the world.
Nahi samanya naari
jodi rakho parshe more sankate,
sansaye sammati dao jodi kathina brate.
Thus spoke Chitrangada, the warrior princess of Manipur, through our Nobel Laureate poet Rabindranath Tagore. What did Chitrangada say?
I seek to tread the meadows of this universe by your side,
I seek to tread the universe by your side in dream and reality,
With equal right and responsibility,
During peace and strife, with due respect.
That is the idea of every woman today in our nation, in the world. We want respect. We want rights along with responsibility. And today`s woman has proved it. Eighth of March we celebrate as International Women`s Day in keeping with the struggle and success of Clara Zetkins who demanded equal rights and equal work for women and she succeeded.
My appeal to you, my appeal to this House, my appeal to the whole universe is: let us celebrate womanhood throughout the year. Let us respect women throughout the year. Let us treat women as equal to the men folk. I appeal to the collective consciousness of the nation to respect women. The strangest part is that we forget that the universe will stop, societies will stop and the nations will stop functioning if women do not perform a particular duty, which men cannot. Men can never become mothers: women can. The women are mothers.