An Indian dad from Punjab is being hailed on social media for breaking stereotypes. A photo of a chemist shop’s signboard that read “Gupta and Daughters”, went viral in India, where it is usually common to find the suffix “and sons” on business signboards. On May 22, a Ludhiana doctor spotted it and uploaded it on Twitter.
The medic, @DrAmankashyap tweeted: “Gupta and daughters .... Unlike all the shops opened in the name of sons, a medicine shop ‘Gupta & Daughters’ spotted in Ludhiana. Be the change you want to see in this world.”
Indian tweeps seem to love the signboard. Many called it a “welcome change”, and others said, the father is leading by example. The tweet has garnered thousands of likes and retweets since it was posted.
“Love it,” tweeted @HarryBisht07. And, @Andynnd1 posted: “Great first step Guptaji. More power to you girls..... you deserve it. God Bless.”
Other tweeps shared other similar boards they had noticed.
And, @Acharya1Shankar tweeted about her cousin who had been doing this for 30 years: “It's so nice of you highlighting the growing importance of daughters. One of my cousin in Kolkata has three daughters and she is running her business as Chathrath & Daughters since last thirty years.”
Why it is a big deal?
Indian parents often show a preference to male children. Despite numerous campaigns over the years, the fondness for sons remains strong among Indian parents. Many of them continue to see boys as an investment and girls a liability. India’s skewed sex ratio is a consequence of gender discrimination.
The latest government report demonstrates that the practice of sex-selective abortions continues to persist, in spite of the stringent laws put in place to counter it.
And, on the work front, according to a December 2019 report about gender equality in India, there has been a large decline in the labour force participation of women (23.3 per cent in 2017-18 and 26.9 per cent in 2018) it is below world average (48.47 percent in 2018; World Bank).
Reportedly, women are also getting less economic opportunities than men due to various reasons. In the villages, women do most of the housework and other unpaid work and have no time to do outside jobs but for urban women, even when they get jobs there is concern about the safety of transport from the family, low pay and sexual harassment.