GUWAHATI, Nov 22 – Despite contributing towards the family expenditure, most of the women in the localities on the outskirts of the capital city do not have the power of decision making.
In areas such as Gorchuk, Nalapara, Sagalpara, Lokhra and Katakipara dominated by tribal communities, although the women are earning through various livelihood options, they do not have the right to spend their own money.
This is one of the findings of the Society for Social Transformation and Environment Protection that has been organising women’s awareness programmes in these areas over the last five years. According to Baijayanti Kalita, a member of the Society, these women work in private companies, as domestic help, collect firewood and are also engaged in weaving, making traditional delicacies etc., as livelihood options.
“But unfortunately, these women are not included in the decision-making process. The male member in their families exercise right over what the women are earning,” said Kalita, mentioning that the Society has been trying to make the women aware about their rights through its awareness programmes.
Apart from its regular awareness programmes, the Society has been conducting a special awareness drive every year for women. This year’s special awareness drive, a fortnightly campaign, will begin on November 25.
“Violence against women is also visible in the areas on the outskirts of the city. This happens because a section of the male do not work but idle away their time drinking,” added Kalita, informing that in the ensuing awareness programmes, all these problems encountered by the women will be discussed at length.
The issue of trafficking will also come up during the programme. It needs to be mentioned here that wage discrimination is another challenge for the women. Although the women work hard and for more than eight hours, they do not get equal pay. This issue will be taken up too at the awareness programme.