Jotsoma, Kohima: As International Women’s Day is observed the world over on Tuesday, women in Nagaland reflected on how women are “showing that they can shine in the so called man’s world”.
According to Dr Lily Sema, Principal of Kohima Science College, despite the centuries of oppression, deprivation, violence, brutalities, burden of climate change, and poverty, women are fighting for a better world.
However, she said, “Women being insuppressibly strong and remarkably resilient, are fast catching up. They are showing that they can shine in what we call – a man’s world.”
During the International Women’s day celebration organised by the Task Force for Music and Arts (TaFMA) at RCEMPA in Jotsoma, she highlighted how the Naga society is witnessing the emergence of brilliant women in various fields by overcoming struggles of gender inequalities, undergoing a lot of hardships to be where they are.
“These women are resilient, meticulous and multitaskers with excellent managerial skills and make great leaders both at grassroots levels and in power,” she added.
In terms of women’s participation in the decision-making processes, she said that the role of women is critical to effective climate action. Sema thinks so as women have unique knowledge and experience, particularly at the local level.
On the topic of women’s equality, she said, “Women’s equality should bring a difference in attempts of sustainability, entrepreneurship, education, sanitation and society as a whole. Equality will never happen unless we all believe that we are equal.”
According to her, women remain an integral part of human community and that it will be impossible to consider socio-economic and social transformation without women playing their due developmental role.
For a sustainable development and a sustainable future, she advised the need for women to come out of the societal misconception of female inferiority, eliminate the existing issues of women’s marginalization and exclusion, discrimination and atrocities in the name of culture, custom and religion in the society .
The ultimate aim, she said, is to create a better gender-neutral society for which understanding the different facets of a woman’s life is instrumental in achieving it.
She also acknowledged men who are lending a hand for a better world for both women and men. Further, she challenged all women to be the change-makers in the society.
Women’s desire to work for gender equality
On the occasion, Mercy Tetseo of the famed Tetseo Sisters shared her desire to work for justice and gender equality. Speaking about her personal experience, she shared how the folk band was initially criticised for the work they do, citing how people questioned on how the female band will make money out of folk music, even criticised for travelling to various places to perform.
Despite the criticisms, she shared how the band has emerged to gain a foothold in the music industry, passing on the cultural legacy taught to them by their parents.
Humbly saying that her contribution to society has just begun, she expressed hope to inspire the youth to follow their dreams and take up challenges.
Meanwhile, the celebration was attended by students – both male and female. During the ceremony, Dr Theyiesinuo Keditsu, assistant professor at Kohima college, recited a poem. Female artists Imnainla (guitarist) and Akhrole Keyho (singer) performed for the gathering.
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