Serving a Cause

With five books to her credit on women issues, Dr Muzamil has been relentlessly working to better the lives of marginalized women working in a patriarchal society, BILAL HANDOO reports


A research scientist working as an assistant professor at Kashmir University, Dr Muzamil symbolizes the rising quest amongst women in Kashmir for academics. Born in Srinagar’s old city, she established her name as a reputed researcher and an author in valley’s academic circles with publication of a number of books on women issues. She first came into limelight at 8th JK Science Congress held at Kashmir University where she was awarded one of the ten young scientists of J&K for her research.

Dr Muzamil has produced 55 research papers of regional, national and international repute on women issues. Apart from her research and engagements as a teaching staff at Kashmir University, she is also doing extension work, documentation and publication. So far, she has published five books on entrepreneurship, empowerment, gender disparity and women development.

“Women issues are least documented in the state. There are issues which even the state doesn’t talk about. Keeping this lacuna in mind, I mainly focus on women issues,” Dr Muzamil, who has presented research papers in 26 conferences and congresses at regional, national, international level, told Kashmir Life.

Her first book, ‘Entrepreneurship and Women Empowerment’ published in 2008 talks about women’s employment in existing occupations and how it has been affected by advancements in technology. “There has been an increased mechanization of competing sectors such as handlooms, handicrafts and carpet industries in which women are employed in large numbers which has led to women unemployment,” she says in her book.

Her second book published in 2009 ‘Entrepreneurship Development for Women through Cooperative Sector’ states that cooperative sector has not taken much interest in the formation of women’s cooperatives and when they have, men usually still dominate it.

Muzamil started her education from a school in her locality. She then went to Kothi Bagh Higher Secondary Institute in Srinagar and joined Women College for her Bachelor’s Degree in Home Science. “After that, I joined Home Science department where I secured Gold Medal at PG Level,” she said. Eventually, she did her Ph.D in Extension and Communication branch of Home Science from Jammu University. After coming back, she taught at Women College for a year. In 2009, she was appointed as an assistant professor at Kashmir University.

Being a female, she drew a lot of flak from her relatives, who raised many queries about her frequent field trips in connection with her research. “The whole credit for my success goes to my mother who worked hard and always kept firm faith in my abilities when others tried to create controversies,” she said.

Dr Muzamil has also worked as an associate editor of ‘Journal of Oriental Science’. “I have seen the research papers of Dr. Muzamil, which in itself reveals the hard work and research potential this budding researcher has been endowed with,” S Fayaz, former Registrar, Kashmir University, said.

Muzamil is the fifth and youngest daughter of her parents. She has two brothers. All the siblings have good educational background and they are working at reputed positions in different government departments. “But it was her own hard work which made all the difference to her career and her life,” her mother, Misra Begum, said.

“In addition to being a good researcher, she is a good administrator, which she proved during her tenure as assistant director of DIQA, where I worked as one of the assistant directors and had a chance to see her working potential. Given a chance, Dr. Muzamil will prove to be an asset to any Teaching and Research Organization,” former Registrar, KU, Mr Fayaz says.

Dr Muzamil published her third book in 2009 titled ‘Women Empowerment through Cooperative Sector’ which sheds light on improving the status of women in cooperative sector. “Majority of women in India need income for survival. Both in rural and urban areas, more females are reported as marginal workers who form a substantial proportion in all age groups,” says Dr Muzamil.

Her book ‘Gender Disparity in Economic Sector: Need for Cooperative Development’ published in 2010 by Lambert Academic Publishing, a Germany based publishing house talks about gender disparity in economic sector across the world with special reference to India.

In 2010, she published another book ‘Women Developments in Kashmir: An Intervention through Cooperatives’. In this book, she expresses concern over the small number of Kashmiri women workers officially recognized as workers and wage earners. “Of these, the majority is concentrated in the primary sector of agriculture and animal husbandry,” she said.


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