2007-03-08 14:57:23

Women’s Day: world’s beloved, yet abused

(08 Mar. 2007) : As the world celebrated International Women’s Day on Thursday March 08, at least three ‘awareness’ marches were held in India’s capital City of New Delhi, to protest against sexual harassment and marital violence against women. In this modern era when we talk of rights and liberties, women’s rights are violated in more than one ways, be it foetal sex determination leading to female infanticide, domestic violence, mental torture, illiteracy or disparity in wages. As India boasts of huge economic progress, the fact remains that women’s condition is still pitiable and atrocities against women do exist and have in fact registered an upward swing.

According to official figures, in 2005 more than 34,000 cases of molestation were reported, while nearly 60,000 police cases were filed for cruelty by husbands or relatives. The latest National Family Health Survey said that nationwide 37.2 percent of women “experienced violence” after marriage. Five million girls between 1986 and 2001 fell prey to infanticide because of foetal sex determination done by unethical medical professionals.

Added to that there has been an increasing commercialization of women. Women are increasingly looked upon as a commodity, as something that has a great market value which is perhaps the reason why they are spotted everywhere from billboards, music videos, reality shows, beauty contests and talk shows. The Catholic Church has however always upheld the dignity of women and disapproves of any such practices or trend that showcases woman in bad light or is an upfront to their dignity. Late Pope John Paul II had once said: “The Church gives thanks for all the victories which she owes to women’s faith, hope and charity: She gives thanks for all the fruits of feminine holiness".

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