New Delhi: Many know him as a bard, thinker, philosopher, painter and social activist, but few know Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore as a feminist, with gender issues forming the underlying theme in many of his works.
    
Discussing the subject, former chairperson of National Commission for Women Girija Vyas stressed the need to lay more emphasis on promoting Tagore's writings on gender issues which, she said, have relevance even in on Wednesday's society.
    
"From his Gitanjali to his Chokher Bali, Tagore was scathing in his comments against gender suppression. He has so beautifully celebrated womanhood in many of his works and his words find relevance even on Wednesday," said the Congress MP at an event hosted by the All India Women's Conference here on Wednesday to commemorate Tagore's 150th birth anniversary.
    
Vyas ruled that despite India developing leaps and bound in various sectors, gender bias exists in one form or the other and even the higher echelons of the society are not spared.
   
"India is among the fastest developing economies in the world. But can the same be said of the status of women in the country? Tagore has glorified the beauty of women and praised her resilience in several of his works, but sadly even on Wednesday people fail to see women that way. Things are changing but the change is slow," she said.
    
A rendition of Tagore's most popular songs and a ballet were also organised to mark the celebrations. The event is just one of the many programmes being held throughout the country to commemorate the Bengali polymath's birth anniversary.

(Agencies)