This has been noted by many to be a growing trend among the Chakma womenfolk. Most agree that this trend does reflect their strong determination to achieve financial freedom by way of earning a livelihood. This has come as a surprise to many though, because only a few years back no one would have imagined how things would change and a progressive change in attitudes, lifestyles and approaches among women far out in the villages would see a paradigm shift. However, the fact that the Chakma womenfolk cannot be considered professionally skilled – and considering the downside of not being skilled – could prove to be a spoilsport.
On the brighter side, the Chakma women showing the courage to come out of their comfort zone and working to earn their livelihood goes a long way in proving their mettle and also in proving back home that they are a few notches higher up. Right at the time when the world has been promoting women education and empowerment across the globe, the Chakma women have definitely given a reason to cheer for. It must also be mentioned here that the Chakma womenfolk would do much better if they receive some sort of assistance to pursue higher education and encouragement to develop professional skills, from the government of Arunachal Pradesh.
However, if things are viewed objectively, the reality does not give too much of a reason to cheer for. If we look at why the women have ventured out to look for work, the straightforward answer would be lack of employment opportunities. Migration in search of work is not a one-off phenomenon though or that it is confined only to the Chakma womenfolk; new developments which end up creating new job opportunities are witnessed every day. As a result of which, a great number of women – besides men – are seen flocking from one part of the country to the other where they are seen earning in some cases more than their male counterparts. In short, women have already come of age in every sphere of life.
If one were to take a look at the positives of Chakma women migration to the towns and cities especially to Delhi NCR, many of them have been employed in the booming retail industry and few in the BPO sector; they all have proved themselves and are proud earners of their livelihood, although a majority of them have taken up employment as factory workers. All the same; they are able to be supportive of their families back home, and considering the exposure they must have received and the experience they must have gained it must have done a great deal of good to their confidence, besides being able to boast of a sense of self-reliance. Many say that it was not imaginable few years back that a woman particularly with not-so-strong educational background could ever cross over the state’s boundary and work elsewhere outside of it. But today, hundreds of women are known to have temporarily migrated to different cities in an attempt at supporting their families.
Perhaps, the scenario would have been much different – and a much improved one at that - had the womenfolk been skilled with some sort of vocational training; they would have probably turned out more resourceful than their male counterparts. Yet, the Chakma womenfolk would be served well if they are positively encouraged and also supported for further growth. The Government of Arunachal Pradesh definitely owes a lot to all the women of the state and therefore, the leadership should pay heed towards their education and empowerment.
Perhaps, despite everything, it is high time things are looked at positively but in an objective manner. The Chakma womenfolk must understand that the level of professional skills one is equipped with is directly responsible for one’s future growth and quality of life. If one were to be honest with oneself, it is not difficult to see that the odds are still stacked too high against things ending on a rosy note. Therefore, the best bet for the Chakma womenfolk who have ventured out of their homes to find work and earn is to earn and save so as to be able to invest back home, as one can never be sure of the future given the reality the Chakma womenfolk is faced with today. Also, unless one’s roots are strengthened, one cannot be sure of peace and security anywhere in the world outside of home….