Suneela Sovani, Akhil Bharatiya Prachar Pramukh of Rashtra Sevika Samiti (RSS) stated, need of the hour is man-woman cooperation, not equality. Suneelaji said that woman empowerment should not depend on any external force.
Suneel Sovani was speaking on a gathering of Amrutasatham series of lectures, organised by Kesari Malalayam weekly, in connection with the centenary celebrations of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). The lecture was on the role of Rashtra Sevika Samiti in women empowerment. Equality and gender equality among men and women are foreign concepts. Equal power leads to disputes; on the other hand, what we need is cooperation. Sovani added that man and woman should have sense of responsibility and duty consciousness.
Referring to Rashtra Sevika Samiti, Sovaniji said that it was founded in 1936 by Lakshmibai Kelkarji. It was the result of her personal life experiences and guidelines she got from RSS founder and Parama Poojaneeya Adya Sarsanghchalak Dr. Keshav Baliram Hedgewar. Women empowerment was one of the major aims.
Suneela Sovani, added that during freedom struggle, 1800 women participated in the satyagraha in 1942 in connection with the Quit India movement. Post independence, women did not get deserving positions. Now, Lok Sabha has passed the Women’s Reservation Bill which seeks to reserve 33 % of all seats in the Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies. Now, 81 MPs belong to the families of the leaders of one or other political party. Hereafter 181 women MPs are expected to enter Lok Sabha. Women should be empowered, then only excellent women lawmakers will come up. The term ‘women empowerment’ is in wide currency now. But, it is not possible through any vaccination. Women do have that inherent force. Sevika Samiti has been awakening it since the last 90 years. Lakshmibai Kelkar alias Mousiji established that women empowerment is not to be achieved through men’s protection or legislation, but, through self- reliance and own power.
Sovaniji said, Sevika Samiti has got 3,500 sakhas; 1200 pracharikas work for the organisation. Crores of women are linked with the organisation. Even though, less in number, their quality is superb and they work as lighthouses throughout the country. Thousands of NGOs work for the betterment of the women. Their sphere of activities are education, employment, protection of health and so on. There are several people who talk, on top of their voice, about women empowerment, but, not about national interest or glory of the country. But, Samiti believes that women power should be utilised for the sake of the nation. Woman should gain her own strength and should be able to lead the family in the right direction. Then only they will be capable of leading the society and the country. NGOs do have several interests and they maintain foreign attitudes. During the early days of Sevika Samiti, Mousiji was engaged in the real women empowerment. Community kitchen, run by women, was the brain child of Mousiji. She introduced novel educational system and programmes for the women. She created a role model by working for the women in danger zones during country’s participation. Recently, Samiti workers came to the rescue of the compatriots during the times of natural calamities and social issues. Suneela Sovaniji told that Samiti workers were busy in cremating the Corona victims in Bhuj, Gujarat.
The Durga inherent in the woman should be awakened for converting them to personalities of exemplary character, courage, dynamism and acceptance. This way, man and woman can coexist together as the two wings of Garuda, as Swami Vivekanandaji presented, hence lead the nation together. Sovaniji called on the women to join the ranks of Sevika Samiti in its aforementioned activities.
Prof. Dr. P. Priya of Kozhikode Government Arts & Science College presided. Dr. Priya pointed out that several schemes of union government are helpful for the uplift of the women. She opined that the characters in our epics are role models for the women. She quoted Geeta that wisdom and sense would vanish if sentimental vigilance is missing, whatever the quantum of one’s wisdom and talents may be.
Karnika Sundar, Kozhikode Zilla Karyavahika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti welcomed the gathering. Shaima Ponnath, state secretary of Bharatiya Mahila Morcha proposed vote of thanks.