State of Maternal Employment in India
Participation of women in employment activities is a new phenomenon in India. Although there have been instances of women have been working both in companies as well as at home, however not for the purpose of earning wages. There has also been significant contributions by women in the economic fields, but it was not emphasized or encouraged because household chores such as cooking and childcare was considered a part of their daily lives. The advent of 19th century industrialization in India saw radical changes in employment patterns as companies started hiring individuals rather than entire families, also at the same time, destroying the concept of small family cottage industries or handicrafts. The present scenario of economic and market fluctuations, high costs of living, spread of education and active social lives have resulted in women seeking employment outside their homes to meet their demands.
Most developing countries, particularly India, are giving increasing importance to the improvement of the status of women for enabling them to enter the field of economics, politics and social lives in general. Presently, a major proportion of these women are working as a necessity i.e. to give financial assistance to their families. Other such reasons for increase in maternal employment include seeking ways to evade household chores, realize a sense of participation in national economic building and attending to their political requirements and lastly, give their lives a meaning.
In general, the Indian society is very orthodox in thinking that women with adolescents should not participate in employment outside their homes, holding that the mothre’s time is exclusively devoted to childcare.