Kerala's women Unites for a Cause and forms Fourth Largest Human Chain
Kerala's women Unites for a Cause and forms Fourth Largest Human Chain | Credit: Firstpost

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Kerala's women Unites for a Cause and forms Fourth Largest Human Chain

Jan 02, 2019

A string wave of feminism took over god’s own country Kerala as lakhs of women lined up for Vanitha Mathil across the state. The Government of Kerala and a number of socio-political organisations including the Hindu groups marshalled the wall of resistance raising a collective voice of resent against those who oppose the Supreme Court's verdict allowing the entry of women into Sabarimala.

What's the wall all about?

Earlier, the Supreme court had declared the approval to the entry of women of all ages into the holy shrine of Sabarimala. On the backdrop of the verdict, nearly 50 lakh women formed the human chain to promote gender equality. The women, cutting the boundaries of caste and religion, pledged to protect the state's inclination towards female empowerment and renaissance values. The wall extended for about 650 kms from Thiruvananthapuram upto the Northern district of Kasaragod and has been declared as a historic feat next to the Human Chain in Bihar in 2017.

The motive of the massive assembly

The Chief Minister of Kerala, Mr. Pinarayi Vijayan, declared that this event will stop Kerala being dragged into the era of darkness. It will restore the rights of women and provide a safer and secure environment for them. Not just women, thousands of men expressed their solidarity by forming a second wall parallel to the Vanitha Mathil.

The move was initiated by CPI (M) politburo member Brinda Karat and other women stretched the line by standing inches apart, covering all the districts of Kerala. A lot of celebrities and leaders graced the main stage in Trivandrum. Left leaders Annie Raja and KK Shailaja, Thiruvananthapuram Collector K Vasuki, Additional Chief Secretary Asha Thomas, Principal Secretary (Education) Usha Titus, Chandhini IPS and Sheela Thomas are a few people to mention.

Following a trial run, the participants took a pledge which read the following,

“We are taking the pledge that we will uphold Renaissance values, we will stand for equality for women, we resist the attempts to make Kerala a lunatic asylum, and we will fight for secularism."

Brinda Karat claimed it as a historic gathering and stressed the importance of renaissance over stereotypes.

She added, "Religious beliefs and sentiments have been employed to use women in subordinate positions. Today, dear sisters, you have made history. You have resisted against the dark forces that want to push women back into the dark ages. You have built the wall of resilience to take forward the values of social reforms, which are critical for women’s advancement in 21st century. Kerala, you have moved ahead, not only for the women of Kerala but for the women across India."

She mentioned that Kerala was once called as lunatic asylum by Swami Vivekananda. But, today, records have shown that Kerala has become the most advanced and developed state because of the communist and progressive movements. Supported by the reforms and the contemporary struggles, the state has won over all the social evils that have been hindering the state's progress.

The plans for this reform had been started early in December 2018. Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan had quoted that "The wall was to save Kerala being 'dragged back into the era of darkness"

He had earlier expressed that this feat will stand out in the history and will go a long way  eliminating misogyny from the society and reforming the livelihood of millions of women.

Vanitha Mahila or the Wall of renaissance is a symbol of unity among women who strive to emerge out of patriarchy and make it big in their life. Let's hope that the wave of feminism and unity strikes every other Indian state and provide a society driven by gender equality and mutual respect.