When women are the advisor, the Lords of creation don't take the advice till they have persuaded themselves that it is just what they intended to do; then they act upon it and if it succeeds, they give the weaker vessel half the credit of it; if fails, they generously give herself the whole".- Louisa May Alcott
India today is at the cusp of a paradigm change in its growth and its position in the world. We (both men and women) must act decisively to capture this opportunity. We need to think big and scale up rapidly in each and every area, be it education, infrastructure, industry, financial services or equality of both genders. For around two centuries, social reformers and missionaries in India have endeavored to bring women out of confines in which centuries of traditions had kept them. According to the 2001 Census, the percentage of female literacy in the country is 54% up from 9% 1951.
But we should not forget that history in a witness to the women who have in the past demonstrated unique leadership capabilities. Razia Sultana, Rani of Jhansi, Sarojini Naidu and Indira Gandhi are motivation examples of women empowerment. Earlier, most women were able to demonstrate the leadership qualities only on their home fronts, as in Indian society man has always acted as the master of the scene and the decision regarding the issue of empowering women has always been taken by him. God has gifted women with compassion, tender-heartedness, caring nature, concern for others. These are very positive signs which imply that women can be leaders. Though some women have shown their mettle yet a large number of them have to sharpen their leadership qualities in various ways. In order to help women to be in limelight, they need to be empowered. Therefore, empowerment of women is the prerequisite to transform a developing country into a developed country.
I would like to peep into the past when the stature of women as destroyed. They were treated as chattel in the early Roman society. In France, they were termed as half-soul creatures responsible for the destruction of society. The Chinese considered them as devil's soul. Japanese men preferred to live unmarried lives. Before the advent of Islam, Arabs buried their daughters alive considering them as a sign of disgrace. In this way, they deprived women of their due place. Most men view themselves as being the superior life-form in society. They justify this belief by saying that they are stronger and more capable; thus, making them more qualified for the more important roles in society. they place themselves on pedestals and force women to believe in their own inferiority to men and their incapability to excel educationally, politically, economically and domestically. But the truth is that women have advanced in all those areas.