If nonviolence is the law of our being, the future is with women said Mahatma
Gandhi. Now it's just not nonviolence but it stands true for all the sectors.
Women are making wonders across the globe. Women have proved themselves that
they are no inferior to man
The principle of gender equality is enshrined in the Indian Constitution in its
Preamble, Fundamental Rights, Fundamental Duties and Directive Principles. The
Constitution not only grants equality to women, but also empowers the State to
adopt measures of positive discrimination in favour of women.
Within the framework of a democratic polity, our laws, development policies,
Plans and programmes have aimed at women’s advancement in different spheres.
'Nari shakti' (woman power) was the theme for Republic Day parade this year
where President Obama was the chief guest. Women officers also played a leading
role in Republic Day parade. Wing Commander Pooja Thakur of the Indian Air Force
did India proud as she led the Guard of Honour at Rashtrapati Bhawan during the
ceremonial reception for US President Barack Obama.
This is the first time a woman officer has led the Guard of Honour for a major
visiting dignitary at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Government of India has been taking a lot of steps towards the welfare of women.
Recently, Government has introduced a new scheme called Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao,
which will help in generating awareness and improving the efficiency of delivery
of welfare services meant for women. Launching the scheme Prime Minister Shri
Narendra Modi said,
we have no right to call ourselves 21st century citizens as long as we have an
18th century mindset. He called for an end to the discrimination between sons
and daughters, saying this was the key to ending female foeticide. This scheme
will be implemented nationwide through campaigning in 100 selected districts in
the country including Cuddalore in Tamil Nadu. All the States and Union
Territories will also be joining the initiative of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao(BBBP)”.
Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi also launched small savings instrument for
girl child “Sukanya Samriddhi Account” as part of Beti Bachao Beti Padhao
scheme. Sukanya Samriddhi Account can be opened in the name of a girl child any
time from her birth till she attains the age of 10 years with a minimum deposit
of Rs. 1000 and thereafter any amount in multiple of Rs. 100 can be
deposited.The account holder girl child will be able to operate the account
herself on attaining the age of 10 years. The account will remain operative for
21 years from the date of opening of account or marriage of the girl child after
attaining 18 years of age whichever is earlier.
Rashtriya Mahila Kosh (RMK) established by the Union Government aims to
undertake activities for the promotion of credit as an instrument of
socio-economic change and development through the provision of package of
financial and social development services, participatory approaches for
effective utilization of credit resources leading to self-reliance, to promote
and support experiments in the voluntary and formal sector using innovative
methodologies, to promote research, study, documentation, shaping and exchange
The important schemes & other activities of Rashtriya Mahila Kosh (RMK) are Loan
Promotion Scheme, Main Loan Scheme, Gold Credit Scheme, Housing Loan Scheme,
Working Capital Term Loan Scheme, Franchisee Scheme, Re-Finance to Urban
Cooperative Banks/ Mahila Cooperative Banks, Nodal Agency Scheme, Awareness
Generation, Capacity Building & Skill Upgradation , Marketing Linkages ,
The National Commission for Women was set up as statutory body to review the
Constitutional and Legal safeguards for women; recommend remedial legislative
measures; facilitate redressal of grievances and advise the Government on all
policy matters affecting women.
In keeping with its mandate, the Commission initiated various steps to improve
the status of women and worked for their economic empowerment during the year
under report. It received a large number of complaints and acted suo-moto in
several cases to provide speedy justice. It takes up the issue of child
marriage, sponsored legal awareness programmes, Parivarik Mahila Lok Adalats
and reviewed laws such as Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961, National Commission for
Women Act, 1990 etc to make them more stringent and effective. The commission
has various cells including Complaints and Counseling Cell, Legal Cell, Research
and Studies Cell, Public Relations Cell, RTI Cell and NRI Cell.
The National Mission for Empowerment of Women (NMEW) was launched by the
Government of India(GoI) on International Women’s Day in 2010. It aims to
strengthen the processes which promote holistic development and empowerment of
women, gender equality and gender justice through inter-sectoral convergence of
programmes that impact women, forge synergy among various stakeholders and
create an enabling environment conducive to social change.
The Government has rolled out a Community based management programme for
Pregnant & Lactating (P&L) Mothers and malnourished children under 6 years
across the country under the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS)
SnehaShivir has been introduced in 200 high burden districts of the country and
is to be serviced through an Additional Anganwadi Worker/ Nutrition Counsellor
at the Anganwadi Centre. The concept of SnehaShivirs is based on the premise
that some children thrive better than others because their care givers follow
some positive care practices. These Care behaviors are intrinsically linked and
include infant and young child feeding, health, hygiene, psycho social care and
care for girls and women.
The Central Government has been emphasising upon the need to impart training to
First Class Judicial Magistrates/Metropolitan Magistrates to deal with cases
under Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act (PWDVA), 2005 through
National/State Judicial Academies. The PWDVA requires the appointment of
Protection Officers, registration of Service Providers and notification of
shelter homes and medical facilities. A total no. of 3145 protection officers
has been appointed by the States/UTs under the Act including Tamil Nadu, Bihar,
Haryana, Kerala, West Bengal and Delhi have appointed Protection Officers with
Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana (IGMSY) is being implementing in 53 pilot
districts, under which cash benefit of Rupees six thousand per beneficiary is
provided to pregnant and lactating woman.
Ending gender based inequities is of utmost priority for the Government. The
Government of India has already enacted a number of legislations to address
gender based discrimination. These include the Protection of Women from Domestic
Violence Act, 2005; Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961; Indecent Representation of
Women (Prohibition) Act, 1986; the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace
(Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013 and the Prohibition of Child
Marriage Act, 2006 (PCMA), Equal Remuneration Act, 1976, Maternity Benefit Act,
1961, and 73rd - 74th Amendment of the Constitution mandating 33% reservation
for women in the local governance. Further, to address the issue of declining
Child Sex Ratio (CSR), the Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao (BBBP) programme has been
initiated with the objectives to empowering the girl child and enabling her
education through a mass campaign and focussed intervention in 100 critical
districts low CSR.
From Kalpana Chawla to Mary Kom every
woman is a jewel who beautifies the world. It's our responsibility to nurture
every girl child who will bring home laurels.
*Media and Communications Officer, PIB,
**Information Asst, PIB, Chennai