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Women's Rights in 1600s India
« on: October 23, 2017, 12:33:27 AM »
1600s: In India, women have no independent
legal rights. They are given in marriage, often
to create alliances between royal families. Wid-ows are expected to immolate themselves ontheir husbands’ funeral pyres (a practice knownas suttee, in which a widow allows herself to beburned on the pyre), although not all of them doso. Widows occupy very low social status in society. They are required to dress in drab clothesand are shunned by others. Also, they are notallowed to take part in Hindu festivals. Somewidows who commit themselves to suttee do soin order to escape being carried off by Muslim
soldiers as slaves or concubines.

Today: Many laws exist in India to protect
women’s rights, including the Equal Remuner-
ation Act, the Prevention of Immoral Traffic
Act, and the Dowry Prohibition Act. The prac-
tice of suttee is illegal. However, according to areport issued by the U.S. State Department in2004, the Indian government is often unable toenforce these laws, especially in rural areas inwhich traditions are deeply rooted. Suttee continues to be practiced in some areas; there wassuch an incident in Madhya Pradesh in 2002. - Encyclopedia

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