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Gender discrimination, still miles to go to end it
Shveata S Chandel | 03 Sep 2009

'Ladka Hoga to bada hokar hamara sahara banega.( A son is the one who will support us in our old age)' these words, though simple, smell the gender discrimination and make the life tough for the girl child as the parents are of the opinion that only

“Ladka Hoga to bada hokar hamara sahara banega. ( A son is the one who will support us in our old age)” these words, though simple, smell the gender discrimination and make the life tough for the girl child as the parents are of the opinion that only a son is the one who will lend them support and will take care of them in the old age.
 
Time is fast changing and with it are changing the tends and the thinking of the people But the traditional attitude of the Indian families where mostly a male child is the preferred choice of the parents has not changed. Still in most of the Indian families son is
the preferred choice.
The preference for a male child is deep rooted in the society. Apart from having a biological son, the height is that even the adopted sons are preferred over daughters. Though many steps are being taken to curb this gender biased discrimination, the fact
remains that it will take time, perhaps longer one, to end this malady.
 
There are many occasions where the achievements of the women are counted but still there are miles to go to end he discrimination.
 
It is not due to the reason that the sons are more competent than the daughters but the main reason is that with sons the parents think that they are socially secure.
 
“It hardly makes a difference whether you have a son or a daughter, but after the marriage of the girl, the parents are forced to live isolated life. I have only a daughter, Asha. From her childhood, I had never made any difference in bringing her up or even given a thought that I don’t have a son. I have fulfilled every desire of hers. Now she is married for the last 28 years. In the beginning, she along with her husband used to live with us, as his husband was posted here. As he belonged to a village, 50 kilometers from here, he preferred to stay with us. They lived with us for 12 years. But after getting their own house constructed they have shifted leaving us alone," says Soma Devi and Hans Raj living near Kachi Chawni, Jammu.
 
”Now I realise that a male child should be there. At least becomes a psychological support for his parents in their old age. You know, in this modern age also, people don't consider living with daughter or visiting her home quite often as good, so where the parents of a girl child will go", he adds, looking blankly towards the sky. As our society goes, the parents of the girl child are forced to live an isolated life. However, despite this some are of the opinion that in this world of competition even sons hardly takes up the responsibility of their parents. So how does it matter at all?”
 
"My daughter is my pride. I have a daughter only. Nothing worrisome more than the she will leave me one day and that is what haunts me at times”, says a motor-mechanic, Sonu.
 
“Presently the trends have changed and even boys hardly stay with their parents because of greener pastures outside their homes. They look forward for a good life, mostly the youngsters are availing opportunities wherever they get, so they have to stay away from the parents. Parents have to live alone, now that culture is also fading out that the boys will be a support for their family there are very few youngsters who take their parents along with them, anyhow you have to maintain your old age on yourself. They will provide some financial aid and t nothing more than it will. The feeling, the care, and the expectations of their parents they hardly consider all those things. So now that social security which the parents of a male child usually feel is also fading away", he laments.
 
There are some who opine that the gender hardly makes any difference, where as there are many others who adopt a male child, if they have only daughters.
 
"I got my daughter married two years back. However, after getting her married we were feeling very isolated. Therefore, we adopted a son. Until the time she was with us we hardly ever thought of a male child but after her marriage a feeling of insecurity has started creeping in our minds, so we adopted a child with the consent of our family and
daughter also. That is the main problem, which comes in front, if you are a parent of the girl child. However, she comes to meet us every Sunday but she has her own responsibilities and we cannot afford to disturb her married life for the reason that it is difficult for us to live without her. Now we have adopted a son ", says Vijay,
working with Municipal Corporation.