While considering the fundamental human rights, a question that has come up is ‘gender justice’. The world had not been fair to the fair sex. According to the communist movements, ‘no religion has done justice to women’. It is true to say that the percentage of women in public services, legislative assemblies, judiciary and public life in general is incredibly low, even in developed countries, not to speak about the undeveloped countries. Denying women equal rights and equal opportunities will amount to the denial of human rights to half of the total population. No country can progress and develop unless women are brought to the mainstream and basic human rights including equality of opportunities and equality in protection are guaranteed. We cannot deny that women are often subjected to domestic violence and sexual abuse. It is in recognition of these facts that the UNO declared 1975 as International Women’s year.
Prevention of Domestic Violence Act and reservation of 50% seats in administrative bodies are steps that empower them to effectively participate in the administration of local bodies. Women are not in any way inferior to men in intelligence, talents and creativity. My feeling is that the steps taken will play an effective role in the nation building activities.
The bias against female children is another alarming feature visible in the contemporary society. Technologies like scanning help to identify the sex of the child in the womb of the woman itself and female fetus is destroyed. There cannot be any action more cruel and uncivilised than this. During the times of the prophet there was a custom of burying live female children. We find clear admonition against this in Quran. Quran says, "And when the news of (the birth of) a female (child) is brought to any of them, his face becomes dark, and he is filled with inward grief! He hides himself from the people because of the evil of that whereof he has been informed. Shall he keep her with dishonour or bury her in the earth? Certainly, evil is their decision."(Quran 16:58-59). The prophet said, “Heaven lies under the feet of the mother.” He also said that the most precious thing in the world is a righteous woman and the best man in the world is those who show love and mercy to his wife.
No religion has degraded the status of the women. But often males who are at the hem of affairs have, through wrong interpretations, used Holy Books to reduce the status of the women.