Source : Times of India
The panellists felt that Nari Shakti was the perfect word as many events of the past year showed change for women in India. The #MeToo movement reached India and many women admitted what they had faced and tried to pave a way for better workplaces. The ban on women going to Haj without a male companion was lifted; ‘triple-talaq’, the Islamic practice of ‘instant divorce’ was banned. A rule that disallowed girls and women the entry to the Sabarimala temple was struck down and women can now enter inter-combat roles in the armed forces.
The government-sponsored Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (Save the girl child, Educate girl child) programme grew a lot in 2018 and a universal helpline for women was set up in 28 states and now the government is taking steps to tackle cybercrime and the online harassment of women.
According to the press release, “Early March 2018 recorded a large spike in use of the term Nari Shakti as discussion arose around the Government of India’s Nari Shakti Puraskar (Women Power Award), held annually on International Women’s Day.”
Kritika Agrawal, Oxford Dictionaries Language champion, commented, ‘Nari Shakti or women power is reflective of the renewed power of women that came to the fore in 2018. It is representative of the courage that women derived and the feeling of sisterhood which was stronger than ever before. It is a sentiment, and that sentiment is being carried forward in 2019. Nari Shakti is a movement involving both men and women, and a reminder that we need to keep fighting the good fight.’