New York: TS Tirumurti, Permanent Representative of India to United Nations on Thursday (March 18) said that achieving gender equality is India’s priority focus, adding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi has moved the nation from a paradigm of women’s development to women-led development.
He made these remarks at an event organised by the Permanent Mission of India and the All India Women’s Education Fund Association (AIWEFA) on the sidelines of the 65th session of the UN Commission on Status of Women.
Speaking at the event, Tirumurti said: “Women’s role has become even more relevant during the COVID pandemic which has devastated many families and livelihood. Our Government has taken steps on a range of women-focused and gender-sensitive initiatives to provide immediate protection and relief for women in our society.
“The Permanent Representative said that women have always been central to the Indian political life, citing the role of Rani Laxmibai in the freedom struggle.
“As a founding member of the United Nations and since the beginning, Indian women leaders have contributed immensely in shaping the concepts and discourse on human rights and gender equality, including through leading by personal example,” he added.
Tirumurti also recalled the contribution of Indian women such as Hansa Jivraj Mehta, Lakshmi Menon, Begum Shareefah Hamid Ali, Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit and more.
“Over the decades, India has worked closely with the United Nations system in promoting and advocating gender equality and empowerment of women,” he said while lauding the commission for emerging as a unique and the largest platform for policymakers for dialogue and to set global norms and standards.
He also referred to the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action adopted at the Fourth World Conference on Women in 1995 as a significant turning point for the global agenda for gender equality.
“Today, in India, more than 1.3 million elected women representatives lead in the formulation and implementation of public policies at the grassroots level. In line with its priority to empower women, the Government is implementing a series of flagship programmes focusing on women, including on their financial, digital and health inclusion,” he further said.