“Empower women empower humanity” was the slogan of’ women’s day in 2015. Throughout the ages, women were deprived of their rights. They have been treated inferior to men. Throughout history, they have been living in a male-dominated society. But we should not forget the fact that the role of women is as important as men in society. Some countries in the world have become rich and prosperous by developing their female population. In Bangladesh, women are still very backward. Very few women here get equal opportunities like men. But if we want to build our nation we must educate our women and empower them in every sphere of our life.
Our women will be able to play an important role in development activities if they are empowered. Empowerment means the act of giving somebody more control over their own life or the situation they are in. So, women empowerment is the process of giving women the opportunity of making decisions about their life, living, and surroundings. In particular, women empowerment enables women to join the workforce, contribute to family income and take part in decision-making activities in the family as well as in social affairs.
The condition of women in Bangladesh is still very deplorable. Women are the victims of social and gender disparity. Female children are still unwelcome to the family. The socio-economic conditions of our women in rural areas are more vulnerable. According to an estimate, more than 47% of women are assaulted by their male partners. They become the victims of dowry, and in some cases, they are beaten to death. They are physically girl sexually harassed in their working places. In many households, they are deprived of proper nutrition during pregnancy.
Some measures must be taken to empower women so that they can contribute in all spheres of our national life. First of all, importance should be given to educating females. In families, both male and female children should have equal opportunities. It is said that education is the backbone of a nation. If the women are educated they will be able to get involved in income-generating activities. Economic independence will give them power in decision-making activities. Thus women will be able to contribute to the development of our nation.
In the Bangladesh constitution, women are guaranteed equal rights. But in reality, however, women’s rights have little practical application. Yet, it is positive to note that women, through their own efforts, are coming out of their cocoons. Both educated and uneducated women are joining work fields nowadays and gaining economic power. Thus, they are exercising influence in family and social affairs. They are also taking part in politics. In fact, Bangladesh has a golden history of women’s participation in politics and ultimately holding the highest position in the Government. Considering all these, we can say that women of our country are slowly gaining their right and gradually contributing to nation building activities.
Proper education and empowerment can help women to play their roles properly. They can contribute equally to men. Our national poet Kazi Nazrul Islam acknowledges the contribution of the women thus: “whatever development is there on earth half of the credit goes to men and half women’s. It is our duty to create a favorable situation for women so, that they can enjoy their right and can contribute to national development.