Aligarh: Peerless experts and students discussed the remarkable all-round achievements of Indian women post-independence—why it is necessary to retrospect the journey of Indian women to date—and the need to scale up further progress in the webinar on ‘Women Empowerment in Post Independence Era: A Student’s perspective’ of the girls residential hostel, Begum Sultan Jahan (BSJ) Hall of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU).
Attending the programme to observe the Nation-wide ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mohotsav, the Chief Guest, Professor Farzana Mahdi (Vice Chancellor, Era University, Lucknow) spoke on the significance of education and the need for striking a balance between women’s moral obligation, their duties and choices of free will and freedom.
“Women should not always be the epitome of sacrifice and submissiveness. They should have all the freedom to give priority to their wishes, needs, desires and ambitions”, she added.
Moderating the programme, Prof Tamkin Khan (Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology) delineated women empowerment since independence and the necessity of bringing more reforms to ameliorate the living conditions of common women.
“Societies progress and develop when women are impartially provided with opportunities. Expectations and sacrifices should not only be expected from women. Gender roles must be specific as it is imperative to develop empathetic, healthy and compatible relations between men and women,” she stressed.
“There is no chance for the welfare of the world unless the condition of women is improved,” said Dr Saira Mehnaz, Professor of Community Medicine and BSJ Hall Provost.
Shedding light on different challenges faced by women and the need for their empowerment, Prof Saira pointed out that women must have full control over their actions, material assets, and intellectual resources and even over ideologies.
She also delivered the welcome address.
Dr Shyna Saif (Department of Social Work) elucidated how Begum Sultan Jahan, the first Chancellor of AMU and the first ever woman chancellor of a university in India paid particular attention to women’s education and emancipation.
“Begum Sultan Jahan went on to have a reign marked by commitment to progress, education and women’s health reforms. She authored 40 books and made great strides in infrastructure, architecture, arts and education at a time when the women were so severely deprived,” said Dr Shyna.
BA LLB students, Shifa Qureshi, Samra Hashmi and Saniya Akhtar spoke about women’s role and contribution throughout history and political and social empowerment of women.
They emphasised why women empowerment is required to be provided with independent roles in Indian society.
“Empowering women is a necessary right of women. They should have proportional rights to contribute to society, economics, education, and politics,” said the student speakers.
Dr Nazia Tabassum extended the vote of thanks.
Students, faculty members and all wardens of the BSJ Hall attended the online programme.