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The women in India PDF Print E-mail
Women

Hindutva Lab in UPTravelling after dark is a challenge that every working woman undertakes in Delhi, but it's not a pleasant experience and anything can happen We might boast of a woman UPA chairperson, a woman President and a woman Lok Sabha Speaker, but the dream ends here. A reality check - this country is short of respect for the other half of the population. Crimes against women are now presented in statistics, which seems to grow everyday. But even statistics and facts can startle you.

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Empoverment of Muslim women in Tamil Nadu PDF Print E-mail
Women

Can there be a separate Mosque for Muslim women? Can a pent-up woman think that the women’s rights as per the Holy Quran should only remain as pieces for admiration and not for practice? The man pronounces triple “talaq” for petty reasons and feels his hands are washed off from the responsibilities of his wife, children and, seeks a second partner out of whims. The first wife is crushed as unimportant stone, trampled and left to lurch in her life. Hitherto “not acceptable divorces” through a letter, SMS, long distance telephone calls, without any arbitration are approved by some of the quacks for paltry bribe. A stupid father-in-law at Vanniyambadi in Vellore District sent a lawyer notice to his non obliging son-in-law to be a Ghar Daamad (slave son-in-law) and foolishly terminated the marriage though there existed no qualms and quandary between the couple.

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Hey Ram, the Things the Financial Times Group Does! PDF Print E-mail
Op Ed

AdvaniThings are at a bad pass for the Indian far right. Its political party, the BJP, is in disarray. At their last "chintan baithak," (introspection meeting) in Simla, the leadership went at each other for their poor showing in the general election earlier this year. Expulsion followed expulsion, as formerly revered men and women were found guilty of one kind of infraction or another. A book by a former head-man of the party, Jaswant Singh (one time foreign minister and close confidant of Strobe Talbott), on Pakistan's "father of the nation" Mohammed Ali Jinnah provided the opportunity for more blood letting. Singh gave credence to what the history profession already knew (from Ayesha Jalal's useful biography of Jinnah), which is that Jinnah was hardly the clownish bigot so carefully portrayed in Richard Attenborough's Greatest Hits of Gandhi (1983). Singh was shown the door. The Hindu right cut its teeth singing songs against Jinnah. He was always the "bad Muslim." There are not many "good Muslims" in the Hindu Right's cosmos.

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Partition And The Fantasy Of A Masculine State PDF Print E-mail
Op Ed

India and Pakistan BorderHuman beings have lived with states for millennia. There were even republican states in ancient times. Nation states are new; they came into their own in 17th-century Europe. Today, all states are not nation states, but most states are. European ideas take strange forms outside Europe. In Asia and Africa, colonialism conflated the ideas of the state and the nation state. Thus, when the western-educated, middle-class leaders of India's freedom movement fought for independence, they did not want only a state, but a European-style, centralised, modern nation state. Such a state, they thought, would be a magical cure for India's backwardness. When the Muslim League demanded a separate homeland for Indian Muslims, its leaders too thought of a standard nation state.

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Women in India's Foreign Service PDF Print E-mail
Women

Women stormed the Indian Foreign Service bastion six decades ago, but it’s only in the last four years that large numbers of them have signed up. Twenty-four of the 84 IFS officers recruited between 2005 and 2008 were women, ie 29% of the intake.   In 2008, eight of the 25 IFS officers recruited were women. That’s 32%. Why ever not? India’s female diplomats are striding the world stage with confidence. The inspiration is not hard to find. Chokila Iyer, India’s first foreign secretary; Nirupama Rao, the present incumbent and Arundhati Ghose, India’s permanent representative at UN who vetoed the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty at the conference on Disarmament in 1996. As Ghose says, “With more women in positions of power, younger women are encouraged to join in.”

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