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Feminism is a belief that promotes equality between genders. It’s main aim is to lift up women and bring them to the same level as men. It gives women the much needed voice in a patriarchal word. It ensures that women are paid equally for the same work and are not abused by men. It supports equality in education and opportunities.
In India, the First Wave of Indian Feminism started in 1850 -1920, this phase uprooted the age old practice of Sati. Raja Ram Mohan Roy was the first who spoke against the subjugation of women’s rights, he out rightly opposed the idea of Sati. And suddenly a wave of feminism started, questions were raised against the sanctity of laws which prohibited remarriage of widows by passing the Widow’s Remarriage Act 1856.
The Second Wave of Indian Feminism was around 1920 -1980. Women actively participate in the feminist movement in this phase. They demanded for the freedom and liberty of their husbands. They became more aware of their rights and this movement grew further and women urged each other to come up and stand against the patriarchy.
The Third Wave of Indian Feminism particularly highlighted the harassment against women. Sexual Harassment at workplace was considered as important issue to be discussed. The Supreme Court of India during that time introduced Prevention of Sexual Harassment at Workplace Act, 2013 which was one of the biggest achievement of this period. Many such waves of feminism followed later….like #MeToo movement.
Though a lot still needs to be achieved and there are various impediments in making this reality available to a large section of women, the women’s movement has brought women’s issues centre stage and made them more visible, contributing immensely to women’s struggle for equality