Women joining hands to protect secularism in the country

By Manzar Bilal, TwoCircles.net,

With the high intention for mobilizing women of the country to propagate harmony, inclusion, justice and peace all over the country, a group of women moved to launch a forum “Women For Secularism” recently in Mumbai.

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The forum believes that though people are divided on the lines of class, caste, race and religion, there is an urge among them to see a peaceful environment and women can play very important role in promoting secularism and secular values in our country which is increasingly coming under the influence of communal forces.

The main objective of Women For Secularism is to provide women of this country with a forum to reassert their rights as a free and independent citizen of India. It is a fact that women have been denied their rights – even those rights enshrined in the Constitution of the country.

One of the important aims of the forum is to prove to the world that it is possible to live harmoniously in a society that has enormous religious, linguistic, cultural and social diversity. It also believes in the inherent dignity of all human beings and condemns all forms of discrimination based on religion, caste, class and gender.

The forum managed by women intends to counter violence against women, contribute to the efforts for gender justice, raise voices against fundamentalism and communalism and to initiate action against all forms of discrimination.

Talking to TwoCircles.net, Noorjehan, a co-convener of the forum, said: “We want to spread the message of secularism in every street of the country so that every Indian can live peacefully.”

About future plans of the forum, she said the forum would organize at least 5-6 conferences in a year to promote secularism, justice and peace, and also would meet people of every section across the country and urge them to join this mission.

There are so many organizations already working on such issues in the country, so why a new group? “The problems of women in the country are too many to be solved. The organizations working today are not enough, and also they do not work out all women’s problems as most of them are working under the leadership of men,” she said.

Noorjehan is confident that her group will soon emerge as a successful platform for all those who believe in secularism and harmony. “We will go ahead with the help of nation-loving people irrespective of their religions, castes, class, and races and surely will succeed,” said she. Ms. Anuradha is the other co-convenor of the forum.