It has been an emotionally surfeiting fortnight. At least 134 people – men, women, the elderly and even children died in a bridge collapse in Morbi, Gujarat, The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) made headlines by announcing that it was equalising pay for men and women’s international events, the election process is in full swing in two states, and the country has generally remained as chaotic as ever.
As observers and news-distributors, it is our duty to place before the public not just the correct news, but also the correct perspective. This is a difficult ask. Views on News has the unenviable task of making the best use of a limited scope to make you aware, yet not scare you. To this end, we have, so far, succeeded, and we hope to grow into our skins further in the future.
However, from within this chaos, we need to sift and find the gems of our times, the best pieces of information that provides hope. The BCCI news item is one such. It provides us a new perspective and provides hope to all women sportspersons of the country. As a fan myself, I would love to see more women on the grounds, not only cheering their teams and their favourite players, but also players who are women themselves. This is one thing I have always wondered about. If half our population are women, then why are women’s events so sparsely observed by women? How is it that a lady cricket aficionado would be more interested in following a Virat Kohli – no offence to Kohli – rather than go to the ground and root for a Mithali Raj?
The basis, if I am not wrong, lies in our upbringing. The patriarchy is not just in our men, it has filtered down, through the ages, to the women, and nobody finds it weird that a sporting the discussion among a gaggle of girls would inevitably be around a male star, rather than a Mary Kom, or a PV Sindhu. How much would it take for a women to earn the same respect as a man? Equality be damned, our women, medal for medal, are better placed in the international arena than our men. There has to be some parity. The BCCI has started the ball rolling, it is our duty to push it faster, gather all the most we can.