There’s a question which is stuck in my head since a long time: ‘Why all the forms and official documents ask for just my father’s name?’ Why is not the name of my mother given any relevance on most of the official documents?
This is something which most of us fail to notice because it has been happening since so many years that it just feels so natural now.
Our mothers have carried us for 9 months and taken care of us day and night. But, I am not negating the fact that the role of the father is less crucial or less essential than that of a mother’s.
Also, my father is as important for me as my mother but then all this doesn’t mean that the identity of my mother will be completely ignored on any official document.
Distinctly proves that patriarchy still exists in our society.
This is a PAN card which consists of just your father’s name and why the mother’s name is not here, is what I fail to understand!
I was astonished when I saw that most of my official documents including my driving licence, college ID card and even my mark sheet just had my father’s name.
The most hilarious thing is, some forms even have the space for the mother’s name, but the catch here is that a word “optional” can be seen right next to it. Why? Is the identity of a woman so optional in today’s era where women are definitely no less than men?
THE GOVERNMENT’S CONTRADICTION:
There have been gazillion cases where passports have been denied to people who were reluctant and disinclined in mentioning their father’s name on the form.
Government is running a plethora of campaigns for girls and women and often speaks briefly how men and women are equal, then why are these people rejected the passports or pan cards when they don’t want their father’s name to be put in there?
Now here’s where the government is totally contradicting itself:
On one side, it is working on education for girls and creating jobs for women but on the other hand, it is snatching away the right to be known and to be identified on a weeny thing like a form.
India, a democratic country focuses intensely on human rights, then why don’t mothers have the right to be known?
VARIOUS CAMPAIGNS FOR GIRLS:
We have seen scores of campaigns for the girl child since a very long time. Current Modi Government had first introduced the Beti Bachao Beti Padao which created quite a buzz among us Indians.
And now yet again, we have another campaign which has gone viral. Yes, It is #SelfieWith Daughter. The internet is flooded with pictures of people with their daughters.
Now the question which arises is that, Why is the government doing so much for the girl child when ultimately her existence won’t even matter on any form or official document?
On one side, the government is encouraging and supporting the girls to study, learn and never be even one step behind the male gender, while on other side, the government itself is endorsing patriarchy and portraying the other gender as the more powerful one by mentioning just the father’s name on the form.
WOMEN NO LESS THAN MEN:
In today’s time, women are surely walking at the same pace as men and even doing better in some domains.
In the contemporary era, Women are heading MNCs; plenty have grown into successful entrepreneurs and even leading the country. They are no way behind men. Yet, they have no right to be known on a form or document.
Turns out, no matter how successful a woman is, they still have a long way to go to achieve gender equality.
Clearly, only 2 solutions can be seen here – One is to mention both the parent’s name on the form. This way equal significance can be given to both the parent’s names.
Well, there are plenty of forms where both the parent’s name is asked. And really, that’s how all the forms should be!
The second one can be just to write ‘Parent’s name’ – against which name of either of the parent can be written. This solution will give us a power to select whose name we want to fill in according to our preference and choice.
THE BIG CHANGE:
These are very midget yet meaningful and consequential steps that can be taken by the authorities to make the women feel as important as men because they certainly are!
Such small things can make a woman feel empowered and can boost up her self confidence.
And baby steps like these can one day abolish the mighty issue that still exists in our country – GENDER INEQUALITY.
Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.