I am 36 years old working in a renowned office at the ultimate high post one could dream of. There is this friend of mine, whom I know; to be true she is my best friend came to visit me this afternoon. We often casually met to share our ups and downs of life and support each other in the best way possible. But, today was different. There is something in the air. Yes, today we were meeting after being promoted in the highest level of one’s profession. Luckily, we both were promoted at the same time. Oh! I forgot to mention that she works in another office as renowned as mine and is of same status which my office holds.

We both studied the same faculty and both graduated with good marks. She was a gold medalist and till present works hard to achieve her goals on time. She is much of hard worker and a passionate person regarding work compared to me. She gives in her best while doing any work. Her intellectual ability and her caliber are well praised by everyone she works with. My heart always lifts up with joy whenever I meet her but today her delightful face had gone down with a deep sorrow troubling her within. At no moment I realized that she is having some problem. So, we ordered some food from the cafeteria and went to my cabin directly.

We started our conversation as usual. She normally received her salary a day after mine. She knew what amount I received a day earlier. She relieved a high phew and said, “Well, I received my salary today”. I congratulated her; you know the first salary after your promotion means a lot. Then, she cracked another sentence and said, “It is much more less than yours is”. My heart got disappointed at the very moment and I felt bad deep within. I felt even worse after knowing the difference in our amount. She left after an hour leaving me alone behind in my cabin.

My mind kept asking me a question, why so, why is it so?… It is not that she belongs to some other world. It is also not that she is in any fact less than me. It concerned me for hours then, from somewhere inside a voice said, “JUST BECAUSE YOU ARE MALE AND SHE IS FEMALE”. Why so much difference in just being another gender. Why so much disparity? Suddenly, I remembered my three year old daughter at home. I started thinking of what her future would be like. My SOUL at that moment said it out aloud, “You are going to make a better place for her and you are starting this very moment”. I opened up my laptop and started checking the details of every employer’s wage. I did find many differences of same level working male and female employer. The very next day I called for a board meeting and finalized the increment in every female employer’s salary as that of their same level working male colleague. I personally announced the decision after being approved to every staff of the office the very day.

It might have sounded a bit selfish that I did so thinking of my daughter but me doing that brings happiness in hundreds of family. That gives me joy and pride to still smile with my friend, to light her up with relief. If I being selfish make advancement for a change in the society then, yes I am being selfish and I am not going to end this trend. With every generation that comes after me till I am alive, I am going to make sure this change progresses day in and out. Hopefully, till the day I die this change may become a never ending habit of each office. This is the ‘PLEDGE I MAKE FOR PARITY’ and I did it, ‘BECAUSE MY SOUL SAYS’.

Saniya Giri – The Female Champions (Batch II)