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Monday, March 7, 2016

Celebrating Women's day ~ remembering those great women !!

Can you identify this woman and do you know of her achievements ?

Mar 8th is a significant day ~ you know why !  ….the ICC T20 WC 2016, the sixth edition of ICC, first to be hosted by India starts !!   Seven Indian cities will host matches at the tournament, with the final to be played at Eden Gardens.  Ten teams qualified automatically through their status as full members of the International Cricket Council, while another six - Scotland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Afghanistan, Hong Kong and Oman qualified through the 2015 World Twenty20 Qualifier.

8th March – sure there would be numerous posts on FB and social media celebrating the International Womens’ Day – getting excited……. Media would post the photos of goodlooking heroines and feature them in first page.  Last year, US First Lady Michelle Obama felicitated Indian acid attack victim Laxmi after she won the International Women of Courage Award for successfully leading the campaign against acid attacks on women in India. Women day is need not be all  about – Reita Faira, Sushmita Sen, Lara Dutta, Aishwarya Rai, ………….there are many many other achievers.  Reena Kaushal Dharkshaktu was the first woman to reach South pole and Sucheta Kadethankar was the first to have walked across Gobi desert.  

When it comes to women in Sport – Serena Williams would feature on top.  Is she the greatest i.e., most famous or most accomplished – a measure of feminine athleticism?  Serena has achieved lot lot.  Serena Jameka Williams  has been  ranked world No. 1 in singles on six separate occasions. She became the world No. 1 for the first time in  2002, and achieved this ranking for the sixth time in 2013. She is the reigning champion of the French Open, Wimbledon and Olympic women's singles and doubles.  Williams holds the most major singles, doubles, and mixed doubles titles combined amongst active players, male or female. She is also the only tennis player to have won 10 Grand Slam singles titles in two separate decades.

This time, there is going to be ICC Women’s World T20 Competition too.  It has 10 participating teams. The tournament was first held in 2009, when hosts England won the tournament. The most recent champions are Australia, who won the tournament and retained the trophy in 2014. The fifth version would be held from 15th Mar till 3rd April.  For the first time in the history of ICC Women’s World Twenty20 2016, the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) ICC TV will produce live broadcast coverage of 13 women’s matches. This, in turn, will be carried around the world by ICC’s global broadcast partner Star Sports and other broadcast partners.

The 2016 list is yet to be out ! in 2015, the Forbes Most powerful women list had on top  German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who had to ponder on : Mediterranean migrants, Russian sanctions, homegrown spying scandals, Eurozone stability and the Germanwings crash, to name a few pressing issues.  Hillary Clinton has appeared on this FORBES ranking every year since it launched in 2004 as, in order, a senator, secretary of state and influential personality. In 2015 Clinton was No. 2, just a breath and a ballot away from the Most Powerful Woman crown.

 The 2015  top 10: Merkel and Clinton followed by Melinda Gates, Janet Yellen, Mary Barra, Christine Lagarde, Dilma Rousseff, Sheryl Sandberg, Susan Wojcicki and Michelle Obama.  The most powerful women in politics, philanthropy, business and tech were Merkel, Gates, Barra and Sandberg, respectively. The top ranking billionaire of 2015 was  Oprah Winfrey at No. 12, who had a personal net worth of $3 billion. No doubt those in that top 100 were icons who impacted the World through business, media, philanthropy, politics and more. All 100 women had the power to shape our world, but 18 stood  as entrepreneurs — the women who built their status from scratch.

If you are wondering of the woman at the top – it is Ronda Jean Rousey,  an American mixed martial artist, judoka, and actress. She is the former UFC Women's Bantamweight Champion, as well as the last Strikeforce Women's Bantamweight Champion.  In 2015, she was the third most searched person on Google.  In May 2015, two magazines ranked Rousey as the most "dominant" active athlete.

Back home, in Tamil’s glorious past, women garnered more attention and respect. They have held pride of place in Puranas and in Sangam literature. Sangam literature extols women for they had to play different roles in the family such as a dutiful wife, responsible mother and an ideal hostess to guests. Women’s education was also insisted during the Sangam Age. 

A poem in Sangam literature which glorifies courage in battlefield goes thus – ‘ that a valiant mother who was distraught when told by people that her son retracted from the battle field and was killed but upon nearing the battlefield and knowing that he fought and died valiantly in the battlefield and did not run away saving his life, the mother felt happy’ ……. Yes happy at the time of death for it was one of valour.  This is a song in Purananooru, written by a Poetess known as ‘Kakkai Padiniyar’ also known as Nachellaiyar.

My post  is dedicated to ‘all women known to me’ – ‘wishing you all happiness and all good things in life’ and may all of you be treated fairly in all places and not discriminated anywhere in every walk of  life. Happy Woman’s day wishes.

Yours friendly – S.Sampathkumar

8th Mar 2016.

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