ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Missing Children in India

Missing children in India is among the most serious issues in child protection. A large number of children go missing each year. Several factors for a child going missing include the linkage of missing children with child trafficking. Considering the seriousness of the issue, especially over the past decade or so, there has been a multipronged approach in India towards expediting the tracing of missing children. This article briefly examines the different categories of missing children, and incidence/prevalence of missing children. It affirms the need for contextualising the issue of missing children within the larger discourse of child vulnerability, marginalisation, and child protection.

After Pulwama: War Widows and the Construction of Veer Nari in India

India has the highest number of war widows in the world, and yet there is little research on the lived experiences of war widows in India. Upon the death of an army officer, his wife is ensured a pension only if she remains unmarried within the family or marries the living eligible heir of her deceased husband’s family. The widow of an armed forces member who has laid down his life for the nation, whether in war or in a military operation is termed a “veer nari”. This essay looks into the state’s oppression through its influence on the family, and an ultimate control over a war-widow’s agency and sexuality.

Regulating Reproductive Technologies

The Assisted Reproductive Technology (Regulation) Bill, 2020 was tabled in the Lok Sabha in September 2020. It was referred to the department-related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health and Family Welfare, which submitted its 129th report on the ART Bill, 2020 on 17 March 2021. This article critically engages with the recommendations of this report.

All Work, No Pay

In a judgment delivered on 5 January 2021, the Supreme Court of India emphasised the importance of fixing a monetary value for the housework done by women as homemakers. This article analyses the contemporary developments in this regard, through economic, legal and feminist perspectives. The article argues that in line with judicial precedents, the present judgment provides an impetus to value the labour and services of homemakers, which would give such work the much-needed social recognition and value. It further argues that while it is a welcome trend to attribute a pecuniary value to homemakers’ services after their demise, for purposes of determining quantum of compensation, a similar approach is warranted in matrimonial disputes in determining alimony and in dividing matrimonial property.

How Can Families be Imagined Beyond Kinship and Marriage?

The Transgender Persons (Protection of Rights) Bill, 2019 and the Surrogacy Regulation Bill, 2019 reinforce the idea of family as a patriarchal, heterosexual and casteist institution and fail to account for other models of "chosen families'"and intimacies that co-exist in India. Given that the Supreme Court has recognised the right to intimacy as a core component of autonomy and privacy, the article makes a case for the law to fundamentally rethink the way it regulates personal relationships and in doing so, adopt a more functional" approach.

Loving and Living in 21st Century India

Honour killings are rampant in many parts of India, particularly in its north and northwest states. An account of a young couple who managed to escape and marry but are still being hunted and thus, hiding.

Three-Dimensional Family

Empirical research on the family has largely concentrated on kinship patterns, modes of household organisation, patterns of inheritance, and practices of nurturance. Contemporary social movements, on the other hand, have underscored the subservience of nurturance to the hierarchies of gender in family households in India. In this complex location of the family, this article seeks to map a three-dimensional view that cuts across discourses and disciplines and underscores a multilayered practice of sociology in order to evolve a more nuanced understanding of the family.

History of Women's Rights: A Non-Historicist Reading

This essay revisits the history of the rhetoric of women's agency and rights in colonial and postcolonial India in which debates around liberalism were often played out by mobilising the language of self-sacrifice to oppose the language of self-interest. The focus is on the debates around the Hindu Code Bill, 1955-56 which gave Hindu women the right to inherit paternal property and to institute divorce proceedings.

From Violence to Supportive Practice

The politics of gender and feminist research have outlined the deprivations and unequal entitlements in the lives of women. This frame has also produced the view that understanding women's lives is incomplete without looking at their everyday locations within families that must include relations with men. This research has tried to bring into focus the way that men's support can be outlined and reflected upon in the context of gender equality and domestic democracy. Supportive practices are more than an `alternative' frame within which to place men. They enable us to hear an aspect of men's lives and expressions of their subjective positions in ways that have not so far been addressed.

Contemporary Woman in Television Fiction

One of the main offshoots of the phenomenal growth of satellite TV has been the media focus on women both as a key target audience as well as the main protagonists. The portrayal of women and the family has accentuated the women movement's growing concerns over the discriminatory nature of the family. Media research must go beyond auditing media content and quantifying acts of omission, bias, stereotyping, violations and distortions and consider how media is able to create a day-to-day communication with a cross section of the audience and in particular, with women, using tried and tested symbols, identifiable associations, safe narrative structures and a mundane and everyday situational framework.

Life Cycle Concerns:Ineffectively Addressed

The lifetime concerns of individuals, though a key focus of the Budget for 2003-04, are nevertheless addressed in such a way that human capital - the engine of growth - will not be accumulated in an equitable or efficient manner.

Understanding Gender and Kinship

Shifting Circles of Support: Contextualising Kinship and Gender in South Asia and SubSaharan Africa edited by Rajni Palriwala and Carla Risseeuw; Sage Publications, New Delhi, 1996; pp 343, Rs 365.
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