Dear Indian girl,
Your right to life now depends on the laurels you bring to your country, the medals you win, the success you achieve.
Slogans such as “Beti Bachao, Medal Pao” (Save the daughter, get a medal) and “Beti Bachao, Beti Medal Layegi” (Save the daughter, she’ll get a medal) are already in vogue.
So, we are being given reasons – or should I say pretext – to save you; reasons to bring you into this world and provide you with equal opportunities. And how ironic it is that we need reasons and campaigns to save you in this post-Chandrayaan age?
Dear girl, your gender is being lauded. Now you are expected to bear the burden of being the “chosen one.”
They want you to be the best, or at least better than the other gender. As if the burden of having a certain personality, a certain thought process, and even a certain behaviour was not enough, you’ll now have to carry the extra weight of these hopes and aspirations.
You are being laden with these additional obligations as they worship your gender and label you “the winner.” And they think they are helping the cause of girl child, or women?
Sakshi Mallik, PV Sindhu and Dipa Karmakar have achieved remarkable feats, and the credit goes to these gritty women, their coaches, their parents and families. The credit doesn’t go to the society or the media. Cricket remains country’s most popular sport and cricketers biggest sport stars, but how many people know the name of at least one woman cricketer?
They have battled societal double standards, societal hypocrisy, and societal apathy to become winners. Now the same society is overemphasizing their gender and belittling the other gender because men couldn’t bring home a single medal. It’s a disturbing trend, and equally agonising.
And now the same society wants to measure your worth in terms of what you have achieved despite “being a girl/woman.” Well, nothing new! Society does it all the time, in every day and age, through different tactics. So, don’t fall in the trap.
Dear girl, you have every right to live, not just live but flourish and thrive, even if you don’t get success according to these newly-imposed parameters.
Even if you live or choose to live an ordinary life, far, far away from limelight, even if people are not aware of your existence, even then, my dear girl, you have every right to live. Get inspired, get motivated, realise and unlock your potential, but live the life of your choice. Don’t go by society’s ever-changing parameters and expectations.
Your life – from the most illustrious to the most mundane – is precious for a simple reason – you are human.
An Indian parent