International Women’s Day (March 8) is being celebrated year after year since times immemorial. The very purpose of this important day is defeated if the objectives are not met. Though women are no less compared to men in most of the areas, the general complaint is that they are not getting their due. The world’s long history gives us a long list of women achievers who have excelled with unparalleled distinction. It could be Mother Teresa, Kalpana Chawla, Indira Gandhi, Margaret Thatcher and many more. The list is unending. What leaves one perplexed is why women are not getting what they deserve. Namma Mysuru’s famous lady Dr Renu Agrawal, former Chief Scientist, CFTRI, has achieved many firsts what lesser mortals can’t. In a free-wheeling chat with City Today, the Karamveer Chakra awardee, Dr Renu shares her thoughts about women’s day and its significance.
Q.Year after year, we have been celebrating International Women’s Day. What is the significance?
We are aware that all around the world it has been a patriacal society. On an official note, women’s day is celebrated on March 8th as fixed by the United Nations to pay respect, appreciation and love to the women for their achievements in all different fields.
Q.At the end of the day, are we able to meet the objectives of Women’s Day?
Yes, as many women of substance are felicitated by different forums, media writes about them people know the extent of work what a woman can do in addition to a home maker.
Q.There is always a grouse that women are not getting enough chances compared to men? Do you agree with it?
I feel now things are changing as in most of the committees we see women face as policy makers. But this needs to be increased with equal number of men and women in all policy making committees of the
Q.Do you advocate reservation for women in all the fields?
I agree for reservation with merit for women in all fields till equality. If a woman has worked hard to be meritorious and is at par with a man she should be given equal opportunity.
Q.Can you name some of the women who have contributed substantially to the society?
I would like to say about our Indian women who have stood as role models for us. We have wonderful examples like Muthulakshmi Reddi (1886–1968), one of the early female medical doctors in India and a major social reformer, Sunita , Kalpana Chawala who went to the space, Indra of Pepsico and many more.
Q.Can women be successful like men? Do you see scope for such a thing?
Yes, women can be successful like or more than men if equal opportunities are given and there is a family support system during pregnancy, child bearing so that she gets time for her pursuits. If both spouses go for work it is important to understand that women’s work is also equally important and has to be given respect and not be belittled.
Q.Have you passed any resolutions for the Women’s Day?
I never pass any resolutions. I believe keep working with your heart and soul, determination, dedication and perseverance. I am sure sincerity is definitely understood by men.
Q.What it takes for a woman to be successful in life?
I think first of all is the willingness to do something more than being just a home maker. If a woman
wants to be equal to men she also needs to work above domestic chores, be determined, assertive, very organized and meticulous. With proper planning one needs the right execution. With the determination I am sure gender disparity may not exist.
Positive and negative sides of a woman.
A woman is generally very courageous, dedicated and if she desires can reach the top. However, a woman is very sentimental, emotional and is played upon.
By R Murali