A commonly believed notion around humans is that feminism or the idea behind women empowerment is suddenly an unnecessary propaganda movement created to gain sympathy and special treatment. A lot of these same people believe that women have come so far and now they don’t face any problems. The issues that pertain to rape, sexual harassment, abuse is not just limited to women but also men. Well, these views have raised a lot of questions in everyone’s mind. They instil doubt for the voices that are being raised against the male privilege. Today, with an example of the pay gap between genders and the problems women face in organised and unorganised sectors, we try to answer some of the above-raised questions?
What is Pay Gap? International Labour Organisation has defined Gender Pay Gap as a Gap that exists in the salary of a male and a female employee working at the same position in an organisation. This particular idea primarily focuses on the existing gender equality that has somehow entered even in the salary a woman receives. Government policies like The Equal Remuneration Act 1976, Article 16 of the Indian Constitution and many more have tried to curb this inequality that also showcases the educational, political and social inequality of a country. But have we changed? Is there improvement in the working sector for women?
Focusing specifically on the Indian scenario:
- India ranked 108 in the World Economic Forum
- India ranked 140 out of 156 countries in the Global Gender Gap Index 2021.
- The economic conditions all over the world due to the ongoing pandemic has had a major impact on the conditions of women all over the world, India being one of the worst-hit countries.
- The gender gap in India has widened to 62.5%, according to the statistics by the Mint. Some of the significant reasons for such disparity include inadequate women representation in politics, technical, and leadership roles.
Some of the policies mentioned above have certainly brought a slighter change in the pay gap; however, women all over the world still have to fight and demand the bare minimum from these organisations and governments as well. It is not a fight that wants to gain sympathy or pity from people but their basic right to earn for their labour and to earn as much as their male counterparts are earning. This struggle has been going on for many years and will continue to surpass many generations before we bring a noticeable change in inequality.
The idea behind feminism and women empowerment is not to reduce the position of men in society or to gain dominance; it is to be treated equally as men. It is to be free from all the struggles one has to fight to get the bare minimum. It is a fight to make others understand the numerous problems gender inequality causes that are ignored.
Let us not reduce the idea of feminism to a mere sympathy gainer but understand the underlying motive and the reason for this fight.