Union Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani on Thursday said the Indian government has taken several measures to ensuring safety, security and the well-being of women during the coronavirus pandemic. She has also claimed the country is committed to build a post-Covid world for women and daughters under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visionary leadership.
Speaking at the 25th Anniversary of the Fourth Conference on Women, the Union Minister said women numerically constitute half of humanity but their influence transfuses all dimensions of society, polity, and economy. She added that India recognises the centrality of gender equality and women’s empowerment in all aspects of the developmental journey.
The Union Minister also spoke about the Centre’s ‘One Stop Centre’ scheme set up to address the violence against women which provides medical, psychological, legal, police and shelter facilities to women.
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Talking about women’s reservation, Irani said reservation of seats in local government bodies for women has ensured more than 1.3 million elected women representatives provide leadership in formulation and implementation of gender-sensitive public policies at the community level. She added that more than 200 million women have been granted access in the formal banking system under the Centre’s Financial Inclusion Initiative, which provides equal opportunity for women to access insurance, loans, and social assistance.
On the issue of gender parity, Irani said eliminating all forms of gender discrimination is the top priority of her government. She also highlighted several legislations passed by the government, such as prevention of sexual harassment of women at the workplace, protection of women from domestic violence, protection of children from sexual offences, and criminal law amendments, which have been strong enablers of women’s empowerment and protection of children especially girls, over the past six years.
Irani concluded her speech by promising that India remains ready to work with all international partners to build an equal post-Covid world for women and daughters. Her statement comes at a time when the country is witnessing nationwide protests against the increasing number of gangrapes in the country.