The preamble of India advocates the principles of justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity. And I would like to emphasize the value of equality, a term that has been familiar for ages and yet unknown to an extensive sector of our society. It is a birthright, but still, people are not blessed enough to avail it. Equality ain’t a subjective concept. It isn’t supposed to be based on how, when, or where you are born. Your family name, economic status, habitat, gender, or anything shall be a parameter to determine the equality that you deserve. It must be unbiased and that’s the bare minimum.
There’s a lot talked about the do’s and don’ts but what about what is going down?
No one seems to pay heed. It’s high time we did. I would like to bring to light the fact that discrimination is not something just found on the streets, among the casual name-calling, but it is far more deep-rooted. It has its origin in the law itself. This, making me question how much and how far we as a society need to work to completely get rid of the very norm of discrimination in every aspect. For example, Section 46 of the Army Act notes that “Any person subject to this act who is guilty of disgraceful conduct of a cruel, indecent or unnatural kind can be removed from service”. This sends in an absurdly wrong message to the nation that it is OKAY for us to treat a whole section with a bias only on the basis that someone, somewhere finds it unnatural, shameful. This act deprives trans people, homosexuals, every possible non-binary of the rights such as medical services, pensions.
Next up we talk about workplaces. A space that is supposed to be safe, a place of a daily commute. But turns there are a dozen unresolved issues here as well. Women are subjected to less pay, less growth. The excuse for all this is that they have a ‘family’ life, a kitchen to run and kids to handle. It is assumed as a license to not being fair to women.
And equality isn’t an equal distribution of resources. It is the moral value of distributing resources depending on the conditions. Varying and modulating a system that covers all sectors and classes and people from different walks of life. A uniform pattern that not satisfies but provides equal opportunity for every human to live a good life, a chance to change and better themselves and contribute to the nation. It’s been ages since we are fighting discrimination every day. Be it in our locality, in courts, in any and every part of India and the world. Cases of color, gender, caste, economic discrimination are ignored every single day and that scares me. Scares me because what kind of a world are we leaving behind? One where our identities are linked to a zillion factors that aren’t relevant, that aren’t fair.
Let’s strive to acknowledge, to make sure that the next time we hear a discrimination case, we don’t turn a dead heart and deaf ear.
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