Should 50% of Indian Police Force Consist of Women?

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The constitution of India states that “All Indians are equal before the law and everyone has equal rights and opportunities. People are free to choose any kind of work they wish to do.”  Answering the question, I say “YES”, 50% of Indian Police Force should consist of women. Men and women equally deserve to serve their country and be active, responsible citizens. But as much as we want more women in all uniform services, there aren’t enough women coming forward to be a part of it. The real question is, why are women not considering a job in the police department, and if they are, what’s stopping them? And those who actually went forward, are they treated with dignity and respect?

India is a country with major patriarchal views, where men are acknowledged for their strength and masculinity while women are known for being ‘soft hearted’ and delicate. The police force is easily stereotyped as an aggressive and strength based profession. Because of the internalized ideas – people have been taught to believe that the uniformed forces are more suited for men. And due to this many women themselves believe that they are incapable of such a burdensome task. “Despite reservation and advertising of vacancies for women constables in Andhra Pradesh between 2005-2010, quotas went unfilled. The intake of women police in Rajasthan, Haryana and Assam did not match the number of women in the employable category.”

 Illiteracy is a major contributor to this issue. In many parts of India, women are still deprived of their basic educational needs. A woman is supposed to manage household chores, get married off once they reach their ‘right age’, and finally be happy with the new found family, how is she supposed to choose a career for herself.  The basic and foremost step is to give her a choice. When it comes to choosing police force as a career, for a man, it’s a matter of pride, but for women it goes against society’s expectation of them conforming to the ideal characteristics of being a woman.

Many women who are a part of the police force are not treated with due respect. “I trained with men, and then went on to work with them. Throughout my training, I was told that we are officers first, women later. But the moment I entered the field, I was reminded of my gender,”  -D Roopa Moudgil, the first woman IPS officer in Karnataka. News on injustice towards women in a workplace is not new for our ears. Sexual harassments, humiliations, bullying at workplace should be taken seriously and not be ignored. “Kolhapur, Maharashtra, April 2011. At least 11 women recruit constables alleged that police instructors had sexually exploited them when they were undergoing training.” Women are assigned with task which seems ‘suitable’ for them. “The Jharkhand state police manual says that women police “are not to be substituted for male police but they should be employed on duties which they alone could perform more effectively and with greater advantage than male police”.

There are some basic factors that could contribute as a solution to our issue,  

  • Choice: Men and women should be given equal choices. They should be the ones who get to decide what career they choose.
  • Equality in work place: In all workplaces, women should be considered equally capable and respected with dignity. They should be judged based on their capabilities and not their gender.
  • Literacy: people should be given proper understanding of the Indian police force and all other uniformed forces. They shouldn’t judge a profession based on rumours and stereotypes.
  • Gender based equality: Indian police force does require both strength and intelligence. These factors vary from person to person, not gender to gender. Women and men are equally efficient and skilful.

The Indian Police force requires able, proficient individuals. 50% of women and 50% of men together could do wonders for our society. Let us all thrive for a better, developed country where there are less offences and crimes.

Declaration of Own work:

Declaration:

I Bhavya Girish, confirm that the work with the title

“ Should 50% of the Indian policeForce consist of women?”

Was solely undertaken by myself without any help from others. All sections of the paper that use quotes or describe an argument or concept developed by another author have been referenced, and have been adopted to support my thesis.

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