What is AIDWA's perspective of women's oppression?
The large majority of women in India suffer the burden of discrimination on the basis of their gender. In addition, because women do not form a homogenous group, different sections of women face added burdens of exploitation if they belong to an exploited class or oppressed caste or minority. In the Indian context, the "women's issue" has to take into account all these aspects of discrimination.
The Indian State, representing as it does the narrow interests of the powerful elite of the capitalist and landlord classes, strengthens patriarchy as an ideology intrinsic to its interests. Many obscurantist, anti-women traditions are being reinforced by "modern development" forces. AIDWA believes that the emancipation of women in India requires fundamental systemic change.
Women's concern are thus an integral part of a larger socio-political and economic system and cannot be addressed in isolation or only within the framework of male-female relationship . For example on the huge increase in crimes and violence against women within the family and in the wider social arena, AIDWA believes that it needs to be fought through the active intervention of local communities in support of the victimised women. Given the interlinkages between economic dependence, cultural stereotypes and women's forced submission, campaigns against violence need to raise these issues also. Such intervention needs to be actively encouraged and built up by women's organisations.
To further the struggle for women's rights AIDWA believes that the first priority is to organise and mobilise the masses of women in struggles to better their own lives on issues of vital importance to them. AIDWA is also committed to strengthening and expanding united movements with other women's organisations and groups throughout the country. At present AIDWA is in the forefront of all such efforts for united action and struggle on various issues agitating women.
At the same time AIDWA's perspective also demands a positive and conscious approach to involve other sections of society in support of the struggle for women's rights, including trade unions, peasant organisations, youth and students and professional associations and others. AIDWA organises solidarity actions for their demands also and stresses the importance of united movements on common issues. AIDWA is an active participant on many issues of common concern such as in the struggles against communalism, for secularism, against imperialist exploitation, for self-reliance and reversal of policies detrimental to the country and its people.