Gujarat National Law University
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Committee Concerns

The “Gensen” Committee: What is it all about? An Original GNLU Initiative

“Sex” is a much bandied about term about the physical differences between womenfolk and men folk. It is commonly perceived to be Universal in nature. The term “Gender” points to the socially engineered responsibilities of women and men, in a given cultural location and station. These preferences are structured by viewpoints and expectations emanating from socio-cultural, political, environmental, economic, and faith based factors. Custom, law, class, ethnicity, and individual or institutional biases too play a moulding role. Gender definitions are learned and can be metamorphosed. India in particular has had a chequered record as far as the metamorphosing roles of gender and women role playing are concerned. Women may seem to have advanced beyond their patriarchal chains but the societal net still looms large over the dames of the day. Women need to pull their act together and assert themselves in a clarion call of the “Benign Sisterhood”, which undertakes tasks for the upliftment of the common weal. (Veil!)
Women today are independent and financially self sufficient in many walks of life. Our Educational Institutions are a sacred place, which need to be spruced up for ensuring Gender Justice and egalitarian treatment in an open and transparent environment. GNLU denizens, both male and female students, need to be made aware of the reason for gender sensitization mechanisms to exist in their sphere of legal education. Being the legal eagles that they are, they need to ascertain for themselves a modicum of strain free and healthy environment where academic exchanges take place with fluidity and the academics of the Law School goes on unhindered upstream. There are certain “stereotypes” which need to be broken:

Women V/S Men

  • Poor - Rich
  • Weak - Powerful
  • Bonded - Free
  • Housekeepers - Breadwinners
  • Weakkneed - Braveheart
  • Liberals-Realists
Gender inequality is still very evident in this respect, as indicated by the following United Nations statistics
  • Women tend to perform 2/3 of the world’s work
  • Women tend to earn 1/10 of the world’s income
  • Of the world’s illiterates, women account for two thirds of the segment.
  • Women own less than One-Hundreth of the World’s Assets
Women Students in GNLU need to take into account the sea of adjectives and statistics here and interweave them in a stellar effort to increase awareness about women's issues such as harassment in Educational Institutions, work place and other public places like transport systems in cosmopolitan cities and the glass ceiling faced by women employees in various private and public sector organizations. Women students need to take their male friends into confidence and dispel the fears and misconceptions that the student community has about an institution as hallowed and public serving as our very own “GenSen”. With everybody’s confidence we have evolved a redressal mechanism which is very well oiled and efficient and has risen on occasions of distress to women in our highly esteemed National Law School.
The prevention and deterrence of sexual harassment in the workplace laid down by the Supreme Court of India in its 13th August 1997 judgment, on the Writ Petition (Criminal) Vishaka vs. State of Rajasthan, is the beacon light for our GNLU’s “GenSen”. The National Human Rights Commission also in a momentous move directed the University Grants Commission to procure the directives concerning sexual harassment to be circulated among other Universities. The best way to combat the prowlers is to speak up against them collectively and if that is not possible due to societal pressures then a higher up authority can be intimated and action initiated against the erring person. The key to the process is that no delay should occur in the reporting of the untoward incident, as it may only further instigate the offender.
The Harassment in public places needs to be curtailed and it is highly essential that the future arbitrators in GNLU, honestly imbibe the concerns of gender issues. Harassment need not be delimited to the concrete and the tangible, as mental torture and psychological harassment in Educational Institutions at all levels in the Ivy League centres of learning, too need to be bracketed as crime and atonement sought for it. This is the call of the hour and the sentiment of the day.
So, here we are with our initiative in GNLU and its friendly neighbourhood to let hell break loose against all arch vices of vile beings. Let us all be Charlie’s Angels and be a member of the team in order to clobber the transgressors of virtue. These are our Faculty Coordinators for the “GenSen”:
  • Dr. Mamata Biswal, Convener (Gensen)
  • Ms. Asha Verma
  • Mr. Sushil Goswami
  • Ms. Avani Vyas,

Two days International Seminar on “Journey of Women Empowerment: Miles to Go”.24 – 25 March 2012.

It is a pleasure to share that the Gender Sensitization Committee of Gujarat National Law University, once again took the lead for women empowerment by organising the two-day international seminar on “Journey of Women Empowerment: Miles to Go” on 24 – 25 March 2012.
    
The two days witnessed scholarly paper presentations on the issues of Economic Trends pertaining to women empowerment.The topics ranged from property issues to role of women in the corporate sector. There were contemporary issues raised in several discussions, debates and deliberations with Prof. Dr. Iqbal Ali Khan and Prof Dr. Poonam Pradhan Saxena as two of the distinguished panellists. The second broad theme which was discussed that day was that of Legal Trends that raised a lot of questions on constitutional perspectives and other contemporary legal issues like that of the validity of live in relationships.
The valedictory ceremony was graced by Hon’ble Mr. Justice Ravi Tripathi, Judge, Gujarat High Court. The former Deputy Chairperson of the Rajya Sabha, Dr. Najma Heptullah and The Minister of State, Women and Child Development, Government of Gujarat, Prof Vasuben Trivedi, formed the distinguished guests during the ceremony. Prof. Vasuben Trivedi spoke about the policies being taken up by the Government of Gujarat for facilitating women empowerment under the auspices of the dynamic leadership of Shri. Narendra Modi, Hon. Chief Minister of Gujarat. Dr. Najma Heptullah praised GNLU by stating that GNLU not only has infrastructure but also quality. She said that the country’s progress can be judged by the quality of mind. She stressed on equal wages based on UN Declarations.
The Director of GNLU, Prof. Dr. Bimal N. Patel expressed his pleasure at the success of the seminar in reaching out to diverse professionals cutting across the fields of academics, legislative, executive and judiciary.

GNLU Takes Lead in discussing the Role of Women in Peace Making and joins the United Nations University in its celebration Thursday, 23 September 2010

The Gender Sensitization Committee of the Gujarat National Law University had organized a State level Symposium on the ‘Role of Women in Peace Making’, on 23 September 2010 at its old campus in Sector 26, Gandhinagar.
The Symposium was attended by eminent guests, panellists, special invitees, faculty members and students. The panellists included Dr. S. K. Nanda, Principal Secretary of Government of Gujarat. He sent a very well researched presentation on ‘the Multifarious Role of Women in Peace Making’ which was presented by Mr. Thomas Matthew, faculty, GNLU.  His presentation emphasised the social significance of women’s participation in peace making and the urgent need to empower them.
The next panellist was Smt. Sunanda Tomar. She is the Commissioner of Women and Child Development and is a Secretary Government of Gujarat. She was represented by Ms. Jigna Surkar.  She spoke on the theme of ‘Domestic Violence’. She offered detailed statistics regarding incidences of domestic violence in the country. She also pointed out the legal provisions in place to address the issues.
The third panellist was Ms. Bindu Gamit who is a member Secretary, State Commission for Women, Government of Gujarat. She sent a PPT presentation which was presented by Mr. Thomas Matthew. The theme of her presentation was ‘Nari  Adalat-Role of Rural Women in Justice Delivery System’ .
  She provided a historical perspective of Nari Adalat, its structure and format. She also mentioned the significant role it played in redressing women’s issues in rural areas.
The next panellist was the Dean of Academic Affairs, GNLU, Dr. Shobhlata Udapudi. The theme of her presentation was ‘Role of Women in Peace Making – Special Reference to Environmental Issues and Sustainable Development’. She highlighted the fact that women would play a significant role in sustainable development.
The panel also included Dr. Radha Parikh, Asstt. Professor, DAIICT. She spoke with special emphasis on ‘Women Empowerment.’ She placed strong emphasis on equal opportunity for women in all sectors. Her insistence that empowerment of women serves society by tapping a valuable Human Resource was corroborated with case studies from the World Wars. Her interactive style of presentation was hugely appreciated by the audience.
The Symposium was part of the Valedictory Ceremony of AAHWAN – a week long observance of Gender Sensitive issues organised by the Gender Sensitization Committee of GNLU.

Last Updated: 10 July 2015.