This is how today’s Muslim women in India have reacted to the orthodox practice of Talaq. Voicing their opinion loud and clear 92.1% Muslim women in India are seeking a total ban on ‘oral triple talaq’. Talaq over Skype, text messages, emails and WhatsApp have become a big worry for the community and the number of these kinds of Talaqs is increasing day by day. NGO Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan (BMMA) conducted a study across 10 states about Muslim Personal Law and found that women of the Muslim community are far behind in social and economic status in comparison to other community. Child marriage is still a big thing and half of the women married below 18 years have faced domestic violence. Polygamy has come up as another thing to worry and 91.7% of the respondents opposed a second marriage by their husbands.
4,710 women between July nad December 2013 were interviewed by the NGO and found that 73% of them were from families that earned less than Rs 50,000 annually and 55% were married before they reached 18.
Economic condition is worse, 82% had no property in their name and 78% were homemakers, indicating absence of income. Education is another hurdle and majority were poorly educated.
About (93%) favored an arbitration process before the divorce and 83.3% believed that codification of Muslim family law would help get justice. However due to religious interference Codification of Muslim personal law has been resisted by the community.
The Logical Indian asked the author of the study Zakia Soman, who along with Safia Niaz conducted the survey. And here is what she has to say “Indian women are far ahead of some of the Muslim leaders who still want to rule with their Middle-Age patriarchal mindsets. The Muslim women use their heads in religious and social matters. And they are very clear on these points; they don’t want Polygamy and ‘oral triple talaq’. They want equality and change for the better.”
On government role she said, “Government should seek opinions from these women who actually get affected, not only from the political and religious leader who have their own agenda to propagate.”
“There must be some codification of Muslim family law, and policy made wich addresses these issues.” she further added.
Religious freedom may be valid argument however depriving a large community of its rights doesn’t seem right. How long we want to hide the pain of millions behind religious curtains and keep repeating the same. It is the time we rise above social dogmas and liberate women and society as a whole.
Have you ever spotted a speeding car without a care for the traffic signal? Ever spotted a person rushing to the other side of the road when the traffic light is green? Ever seen bikers use pavements as roads to save a few minutes? Ever seen cars change lanes on highways or rush hour traffic on a whim? Well, so have thousands of other Indians.
Road safety in India is a serious concern. For a country that boasts the second largest road network in the world, it is inarguable that we need to pay more attention to our safety on roads – a place where we step out every day, spend a handsome amount of our time.
The government has come up with several regulations on road safety, but is this enough? Not if awareness around the topic is still lacking.
The intention behind the initiative is to bring together lawmakers, local authorities, traffic police and citizens under one umbrella.
The cities will be rated on parameters such as Pedestrian Rights, Road Lighting and Maintenance, Motor Laws and Traffic Control, Emergency Services, Road Cleanliness, Connectivity, Road Transport Infrastructure, Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management, Road Safety, Differently abled friendly, Road Quality and Road Safety For Children.
Here are the ten cities that were chosen for Road Safety Index 2018 and the reasons that make their roads safe or unsafe:
Mumbai has facilities for the differently-abled like reservations in public transports, special train compartments, concessions on fares, etc. The city that never sleeps scored the best when it comes to citizens’ participation in making the city accepting and warm toward the differently-abled. It won the category ‘Differently-Abled Friendly’.
However, there are areas of improvement – illegal hawkers, pavements and footpaths need to be fixed or reconstructed.
Anyone who hails from the capital of West Bengal knows about its recreational parks and brightly lit streets. Its traffic police deserve special mention for redirecting rush traffic every day as Kolkata roads are narrow and many are one-way streets.
During Durga Puja, the city tries to make Pandals differently-abled friendly by installing ramps.
It won the categories – ‘Road Lighting & Maintenance’ and ‘Road Safety For Children’.
But the City of Joy needs to work more on giving its residents #HappyRoads. Issues of waterlogging and numerous street hawkers, roadside vendors in busy areas need to be solved.
There’s no one who’s been to Delhi and not praised its excellent connectivity. Delhi prides itself for broad roads, top-notch metros, pavements and foot over bridges. The national capital surely serves as an example for cities across India when it comes to road connectivity hence, it won the categories ‘Connectivity’ and ‘Road Quality’ in the Road Safety Index.
While Delhi has made many of its public places differently-abled friendly, the areas that need improvement are long hours in traffic, fixing of roads that pose a hindrance to daily commute and rash driving by bikers.
The city boasts well-marked zebra crossings, adequate footpaths for pedestrians, underground SMART dustbins, reduced encroachments. Raipur fares well in almost all parameters of road safety. It won the category of ‘Road Safety’ and ‘Pedestrian Rights’.
However, the city could do better with stricter fines for traffic violators and awareness about road safety and garbage disposal.
Other cities can take inspiration from Chennai on how to ensure good road safety. The city has wide, well-connected roads that are lit properly. It also boasts rigorous night patrolling where traffic rules violators are fined. One of the best initiatives taken by Chennai is the separate parking space on city roads that prevent traffic from accumulating. It came out on top in the category ‘Motor Laws & Traffic Control’.
Areas where Chennai needs to improve are street lighting and cleanliness.
Indore is one of the few cities that has used plastic waste for construction of roads and covered garbage disposals, which explains why the city won the ‘Road Cleanliness’ category. Indore also has adequate zebra crossings, visual signals, street lights, footpaths.
But areas where the city needs improvement are – strict action against traffic violators, public spaces more differently-abled friendly.
There is a lot to learn from the road safety measures implemented by Ahmedabad – sound medical facilities, separate lanes for local buses, special cab service for differently-abled, wide roads. Ahmedabad won in the category ‘Emergency Services’, ‘Road Transport Infrastructure’ and ‘Heavy Vehicle Traffic Management’.
If the Heritage City improves road safety awareness among citizens, it’s bound to fare even better. Better street lighting and lesser encroachments will work in favour of Ahmedabad.
The other cities shortlisted were Pune, Bangalore and Hyderabad but they didn’t win any category.
Maruti Suzuki’s initiative to rank cities will encourage citizens and administration to do better and emerge on top.
The Logical Indian community wholeheartedly appreciates the various initiatives undertaken by Maruti-Suzuki in this direction. Not only the government but we, as citizens of this country, should also pledge to make our roads safe. One of the first steps towards this is that we understand our duties.
We hope the authorities take a note while we pledge to do our own bit towards happier, safer Indian roads.
For more information about the Maruti Suzuki’s initiative and the Road Safety Indexclick here.