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Tuesday, January 5, 2010

India Shines - Maharashtra Supports Motherhood - Allows Mother's name in School Forms

Yet another story that caught my attention was the headline in the "Mumbai Mirror" of January 2nd that screamed "Mom's the Word". It was a moment of triumph and happiness for all the single women with kids, divorced women and also single women who adopted kids to know that they no longer needed to fill in the "father's name" in a school form.

Our country has been a patriarchal society for decades and in a very bold step, the Maharashtra state government broke this tradition by changing the definition of guardianship. The government accepted the demand to allow schoolchildren to use their mother's name as the middle and last names instead of their father's name.

This change was one that was the need of the hour as the definition of relationships in today's world is changing rapidly and women are becoming more independent. There are many unmarried single women who are taking to adopting children, like Sushmita Sen who has adopted two girls. Modern and working women are more comfortable with a "live-in" relationship rather than getting married. Divorced women prefer to take care of their children on their own.

Maharashtra has indeed taken a stride in the right direction for the upliftment of woman's rights and this will hopefully wake up the other states or the central government itself to make this change in the code of the schools all over India.

According to this new rule, "the change in the school code would make it binding on the schools to accept requests by such mothers to have their names included in the form. This change will be implemented in the week to come. This also means that the education certificates and forms will have to make provision for the mother's name."

It is stories like these that give us hope that India is truly a developing nation and taking strides in the right direction...Way to go!

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