As a country, there definitely has been remarkable progress in terms of our recent global advancements over the past few decades. However, at the same time, we are often brought to face some grim realities, which cannot be ignored. There are still instances when the girl child is discriminated against, not just in terms of her rights to education or freedom, but also at times her right to live, as can be reflected in the cases of female infanticide still prevailing, especially in the rural sections of the society. Further, it is not uncommon in today’s world of equality, as women assume multiple roles at home as well as work, to witness cases of women experiencing the brunt of phenomena like glass ceiling at their workplace. There are many such instances where women’s rights are compromised upon, including instances of abuse or rape, and other forms of violence.

Therefore, while there has clearly been tremendous advancements and progression in the past few years, we cannot neglect the occurrence of such injustice still prevailing in segments of our society till date. On the National Girl Child Day, it is important for us to remind ourselves of our responsibility towards not just females, but towards each individual as a respectable member of the society. As we talk about addressing issues related to gender equality, it is also important for us to take a check on our own selves as a responsible unit of the society. It is our own thinking, belief systems and behavioural patterns that integrate to go a long way in influencing the perceptions of the society as a whole.

This is a collective responsibility of our society as a whole, and not an individualistic blame. In addition to promoting an awareness related to the numerous inequalities faced by the girl child in our country, including areas like education, healthcare, protection and safety, we need to capitalize on this day as a wake-up call, to reiterate our efforts towards this cause. These efforts need to be observed as a part of each of our daily lives, in terms of our attitudes and perceptions about this and other such discriminated sections of the community. Further, we as a society need to assume responsibility and increase our sensitivity towards the needs and rights of others. This would not be possible without each one of us assuming the responsibility to pledge sensitivity towards the needs and rights of the girl child. Therefore, let us seize the opportunity as we celebrate the National Girl Child Day this year on 24th January 2016, to bring about a surge of change stemming from our individual efforts, to target this evil at its grass roots, and ensure the implementation of decisive action towards changing the way the country thinks about not just the girl child or women, but towards all members as equal and respectable units of the society.

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