Indian Women in Banking Industry: Breaking the Glass Ceiling?


Themes: HRM \ OB
Pub Date : 2009
Countries : India
Industry : Services

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Case Code : HRM0061
Case Length : 20 Pages
Price: Rs. 200;

Indian Women in Banking Industry: Breaking the Glass Ceiling?

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Women in Indian Society: From Custodians of Conservatism to Corporate Catalysts

"Yatra naryastu pujyante ramante tatra Devata, yatraitaastu na pujyante sarvaastatrafalaah kriyaah" is an often-quoted Manu's saying. Manusmriti (3.56) - which translated reads, 'wherever women are given their due respect, even the deities like to reside there and where they are not respected, all actions remain unfruitful'.

Since ancient times, women have an esteemed position in the Indian society. In fact, in Hindu religion, women are both feared and worshipped as goddesses. Ironically, women were ill- treated and were low-graded. As in many other cultures, even in India, women were expected to manage household chores and virtually devote all their time, energy and dedication towards their families. 

For decades, women have been playing multiple roles in their life. Be it a daughter, helping her mother in house-hold chores or a sister, taking a role of mentor to the younger siblings or a wife, supporting her husband and managing household budget. Historically, the girl child in the Indian family was never given equal importance to that of boy child and was considered to be an economic liability because of the dowry tradition (bride's parents have to provide offerings in the form of cash or kind to groom). India was a country with some traditions like sati (the immolation of a widow on her husband's funeral pyre), early marriages/child marriages. Also, people did not bother about widows and widow re-marriages, etc which have left a deep mark on women's development in India.

Moreover, there was abysmal scope for formal or higher education for women. Even if given the opportunity of higher studies, they were always denied the freedom of place to work and the kind of profession to pursue. They accounted for a small proportion of the formal Indian labour force and were supposed to be modest in all actions, which hindered their ability to exhibit skills on an equal basis with men.

The Indian Constitution states that women are legal citizens of the country and have equal rights with men. "According to the Article 14 of Indian Constitution, The government shall not deny to any person equality before law or the equal protection of the laws. Article 15 declares that government shall not discriminate against any citizen on the ground of sex. Article 15 (3) makes a special provision enabling the State to make affirmative discriminations in favour of women. Moreover, the government can pass special laws in favour of women.

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