Any doubts?

  1. Profile photo of sujithra Ramesh sujithra Ramesh

    Do you really think that it is afull fledged action taken?

  2. Profile photo of sameer jain sameer jain

    please make a cd explanation it help me a lot

  3. Profile photo of Ted Mosby Ted Mosby

    Is it Constitutional to keep women Out of Sabarimala asks SC?

    Sabarimala is A Hindu Religious Temple dedicated to worship of God Ayappan. The Case was put in the Supreme Court that Women should be allowed to touch the Idol of God Ayappan which is considered as an Act of Discretion if touch by Women age btw 12 to 50yrs. (I want to clear here that womens are allowed in the temple but not to touch the idol as God Ayappan is a Brahmchari)

    Now, the Question posted by Supreme court can be hurtful to the religious sentiments of many People. A temple is not a public centre or a Public museum where the right to congregate is restricted. It has certain unwritten rules followed from Centuries.

    Considered the Case as Muslim Womens are not allowed in the Mosque . or the fast of 41 days vratham is kept by the people at sabrimala temple. This cannot be change just to suit one section of society. The religious matters cannot be prove Unconstitutional Until it says on larger scale that it violates the fundamental right.( Here in this case, the right to demand is only from one women)

    1. Profile photo of Ted Mosby Ted Mosby

      The thoughts are not personal just the collection of viepoint from different sources..

  4. Profile photo of Simran Bains Simran Bains

    Excellent move by Telangana.
    I read somewhere that a nine member,all women panel has prepared the syllabus..

    1. Profile photo of ranil george ranil george

      It sure is! Though I still think it would have a better impact if they made it compulsory from high school level onwards. Graduation level seems a bit late, cause by then students start thinking independently and what I predict is, most of them would start skipping that gender class. Lol!

      1. Profile photo of Devesh Tiwari Devesh Tiwari

        good one , and add one more point, bad decision to implement in engineering colleges !
        bcz of less ratio of boys to girls (60:6) in engineering colleges, students already give huge respect to girls 😛 no need to introduce any special subject to teach engineering students!

        1. Profile photo of ranil george ranil george

          Haha Yeah. That and I strongly believe that if they include youths in their panels or committees when they plan to implement such policies, it would really be beneficial. At least they wouldn’t miss out on the obvious challenges their new policy could face.

  5. Profile photo of Devesh Tiwari Devesh Tiwari

    its good move to enhance representation to women in forces like CRPF, CISF and SSB ! but i dont understand logic behind to deploy women in BSF and ITBP ! the work profile of BSF and ITBP is different from another paramilitary forces !
    its not safe , they can be exploited badly when caught by enemy or terrorists ! bcz terrorists dont follow Geneva convention.
    in BSF and ITBP

    1. Profile photo of Rohit Pande Rohit Pande

      I agree with you. What’s the rationale that the forces are giving on that?

      I hope it’s not by citing a few off cases where such stints were successful in the west?

  6. Profile photo of Sumer Shah Sumer Shah

    devadasi system still being followed! this is super weird! Is the definition right? They become prostitutes for high class people???

    Devadasi system is a religious practice in parts of southern India, whereby parents marry a daughter to a deity or a temple.
    The marriage usually occurs before the girl reaches puberty and requires the girl to become a prostitute for upper-caste community members.

    1. Profile photo of Simran Bains Simran Bains

      Ridiculous this is!! 🙁

  7. Profile photo of Tejesh Eati Tejesh Eati

    Do we need another government bank? Which caters for only 50% of Indian population? Why not implement a scheme in the existing ones?

    1. Profile photo of Rohit Pande Rohit Pande

      Here is a better article to go with –

      “Bharatiya Mahila Bank (BMB) is the first of its kind bank in India, meant for women. However, the bank is neither completely run by women, and nor is it exclusively for women.”

  8. Profile photo of Amit Bhardwaj Amit Bhardwaj

    “Just as a bird cannot fly with its one wing only, a nation will not march forward if the women are left behind.”—Swami Vivekananda

    1. Profile photo of शुभम पान्डे शुभम पान्डे

      Well said . . .

      . .

      . .
      By Vivekanand

[op-ed snap] Low, stagnating female labour-force participation in India


  1. In recent decades, India has enjoyed economic and demographic conditions that ordinarily would lead to rising female labour-force participation rates
  2. Economic growth has been high, averaging 6-7% in the 1990s and 2000s; fertility has fallen substantially; and female education has risen dramatically, albeit from a low level
  3. In other regions, including Latin America and the Middle East and North Africa, similar trends have led to large increases in female participation
  4. Yet National Sample Survey (NSS) data for India show that labour force participation rates of women aged 25-54 (including primary and subsidiary status) have stagnated at about 26-28% in urban areas, and fallen substantially from 57% to 44% in rural areas, between 1987 and 2011
  5. Different age groups or different surveys essentially tell the same story, even though the levels differ slightly


  1. India is now in the phase of “demographic dividend”, where the share of working-age people is particularly high, which can propel per capita growth rates through labour force participation, savings, and investment effects
  2. But if women largely stay out of the labour force, this effect will be much weaker and India could run up labour shortages in key sectors of the economy
  3. Also, there is a wealth of evidence suggesting that employed women have greater bargaining power with positive repercussions on their own well-being and that of their families

A Feminization U hypothesis for female labour participation?

  1. One possible explanation for this trend could be that India is behaving according to the feminization U hypothesis, wherein the development process, female labour force participation first declines and then rises
  2. The hypothesized mechanisms for the decline are a rising incompatibility of work and family duties as the workplace moves away from home, an income effect of the husband’s earnings, and a stigma against females working outside the home (generally, or in particular sectors)
  3. The rising portion then comes with a receding stigma, high potential earnings of females as their education improves further, as well as fertility decline, and better options to combine work and family duties

Demand and supply-side drivers of female labour participation:

  1. A number of new micro-level studies using NSS data have appeared in the last few years, trying to shed light on this phenomenon, examining labour supply and labour demand factors
  2. After first showing that the decline in female participation in rural areas is concentrated among married women aged 25-64
  3. From 1987-2011, rising own education, incomes, and husband’s education could account for most of the decline in female labour force participation in rural areas
  4. They also argue that the decline might be driven by increasing returns to home production, relative to market production
  5. This might be particularly relevant if the domestic production is childcare
  6. While the educated women that drop out report being engaged in home production, the direction of causality is less clear
  7. Maybe women drop out of the labour force for other reasons and then report a focus on domestic activities
  8. Also, it would be good to test whether this decline of participation occurs particularly among women with children of school-going age
  9. There is a negative effect of husband’s education, a U-shaped own-education effect, a negative effect of children, marriage, and the presence of in-laws
  10. Positive effects of access to finance and infrastructure, and access to Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) employment
  11. Rising household incomes and husband’s education, falling labour market attachment of highly educated women, as well as adverse development in district-level labour demand, contributed to declines in female participation, while fertility decline and rising own education worked in the opposite direction, to generate a net stagnation
  12. More generally, they argue that rising education and incomes are allowing women to get out of menial and undesirable employment, while jobs deemed appropriate for more educated women (especially in healthcare, education and public service) have not grown commensurately with the rise in female education, leading to falling participation among more educated groups
  13. The focus is towards labour demand and the lack of availability of agricultural and non-agricultural jobs in rural areas appears to be driving the declining participation in rural areas
  14. Structural change in India, which led to a rapidly shrinking agricultural sector in favour of a rapidly expanding service and construction sector, mainly contributed to the declining female labour force participation
  15. The lack of a shift towards manufacturing and a persistently low female share in manufacturing ensured that the labour force as a whole did not become more female
  16. It appears clear that labour supply factors do play a role in depressing female incomes
  17. It is difficult for married women with some education and children to be employed, especially if they have an educated and well-earning spouse
  18. In rural areas, it appears that declining agricultural employment has left a gap in employment opportunities for women as non-agricultural jobs have not emerged at the required pace

Factors that need further investigation:

  1. The role of rising female education needs further investigation, as it is not associated with a commensurate rise in labour market attachment
  2. Education appears to play other roles like in the marriage market
  3. Second, the role of in-laws seems to differ across studies
  4. Third, the role of policies needs to be investigated more clearly. More micro evidence on the effectiveness of employment policies is crucially necessary
  5. The role of macro, trade and structural policies also needs to be investigated
  6. When comparing India with Bangladesh, one notices how an export-oriented, manufacturing-centred growth strategy has led to increasing female employment opportunities there
  7. China, of course, also pursued such a strategy much earlier with similar impact on female employment
  8. India’s growth strategy has focused on domestic demand and high-value service exports, which generate too few employment opportunities for women, particularly those with medium levels of education
  9. Lastly, policies will be needed to tackle the social stigma that appears to prevent particularly educated women from engaging in outside employment


Important op-ed for Mains and Essay writing.

With India at 148th in number of women MPs, UN official moots quotas

  1. Source: The rankings of all 193 United Nations member countries released by the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and UN Women
  2. It placed India at number 148
  3. Women made up 11.8 per cent of the Lok Sabha where 64 were elected to the 542-member house and 11 per cent of the Rajya Sabha with 27 of the 245 members
  4. India ranked 88 in the number of women Ministers with five or 18.5 per cent in the cabinet
  5. Key positions: A positive development is a move away from shunting women to “soft” Ministries like women’s affairs and instead placing them in important ministries
  6. Sumitra Mahajan is the Speaker and Sushma Swaraj is the External Affairs Minister
  7. Also Uma Bharti is the Water Resources Minister and Nirmala Sitharaman has independent charge of Commerce and Industry
  8. Problems: Women politicians were held back by a number of problems, including the lack of finance for campaigns and stereotyping.
  9. They also faced bullying online and physically, harassment and hostile treatment by the media
  10. Need to work it out: The percentage of women in parliaments worldwide barely ticked up from 22.6 per cent in 2015 to 23.3 per cent in 2016
  11. India’s percentage is about half the world tally
  12. At the current rate of progress, it would take 50 years for the number of women to equal that of men in legislative bodies
  13. Quota: IPU Secretary-General Martin Chungong backed up the call for reservations for women suggesting that quotas for them could speed up the process for achieving gender equality
  14. The most progress in increasing their ranks in parliament is achieved in countries with quotas
  15. Quota in India: A constitutional amendment bill to reserve 33 per cent of Lok Sabha and State Assembly seats for women was first proposed in 1996 but has failed in the last 20 years to make headway
  16. In the latest attempt, it passed the Rajya Sabha in 2010 but lapsed when the last Lok Sabha ended its term in 2014 without taking it up
  17. The Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Janata Dal (United) and Samajwadi Party have been leading the opposition to the constitutional amendment
  18. Rwanda: Rwanda ranked first in the number of women parliamentarians with 61.3 per cent in the lower house, followed by Bolivia with 53.1 per cent and Cuba 48.9 per cent
  19. South Asia: Nepal ranked 48 with 29.6 per cent of the lower house seats held by women; Pakistan ranked 89 with 20.6 per cent (but with no Ministers); Bangladesh was 91st with 20.3 per cent, and Sri Lanka lagged at 179th place with 5.8 per cent
  20. Bulgaria, France and Nicaragua tied for the first rank for the number of women ministers with 52.9 per cent each


Very important piece of data. Can be quoted in a mains answer or an essay. Not the key facts, challenges for women in holding key posts, way forward.

[op-ed snap] Partial cover: More needs to be done on the mother and child front


  1. The enhancement of paid maternity leave for women in the organised sector to 26 weeks from 12 is a progressive step
  2. It should lead to closer scrutiny of the difficulties faced by unorganised workers who fall beyond the scope of any worthwhile labour welfare measures

Maternity Benefit Act:

  1. Such a benefit is being introduced with an amendment to the Maternity Benefit Act, 1961
  2. It is in line with several expert recommendations including that of the World Health Organisation, which recommends exclusive breastfeeding of children for the first 24 weeks
  3. Giving some benefits to adoptive mothers and women who get children using embryo transfers as well signals India is in step with social changes
  4. Positive though it is, the amended law is expected to cover only 1.8 million women, a small subset of women in the workforce

The unorganized sector:

  1. For many poor millions in the unorganised sector, the only support available is a small conditional cash benefit of ₹6,000 during pregnancy and lactation offered under the Maternity Benefit Programme
  2. The reported move to restrict even this meagre benefit to the first child for budgetary reasons is retrograde and must be given up

A societal responsibility:

  1. Providing benefits for women and children is a societal responsibility
  2. It can be funded in a large country through a combination of general taxation and contributory payments from those who have the means
  3. Health care should be treated as a right and deliveries handled without cost to women

How can benefits reach all the women?

  1. The income guarantees during the 26-week period can be ensured through a universal social insurance system
  2. Such a policy would harmonise the varying maternity benefit provisions found in different laws that govern labour at present
  3. There would also be no discrimination against women in recruitment by employers who currently have to factor in benefit payments
  4. Conversely, women would not suffer loss of income simply because they cannot remain in employment after childbirth

The road ahead:

  1. Beneficiaries covered by the latest amendment must be protected from discrimination through clear provisions
  2. Mandating creche facilities to help women workers under the changed law is a forward-looking move, but it will work well only with a good oversight mechanism
  3. Women’s empowerment can be achieved through universal initiatives, not by imposing conditionalities to avail benefits
  4. The twin imperatives are, therefore, to create more jobs for women in a diversified economy, and to provide social opportunity through maternal and child welfare measures


The op-ed is important for Mains exam.

Lok Sabha passes Maternity Benefits Bill

  1. The Lok Sabha passed the Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Bill, 2016 on 9 March
  2. The Bill had already been passed by the Rajya Sabha during the Winter Session


Read the salient provisions of the bill here and here. If you have been revising your current affairs then the provisions should not be new. With only 3 months left for prelims, you should start revising your current affairs from August onwards at the very least, and for 1 year before the prelims date if possible.

Men earn 67% more than women in India

  1. Source: A cross-industry report ‘Getting to Equal 2017’ by Accenture Research
  2. Wage gap: The gender gap in pay in India is as high as 67 per cent as a man, on an average, earns USD 167 compared with USD 100 by a woman
  3. Why gap? Much of this gap is caused by the fact that there are more men than women in high paying functional and leadership roles
  4. There are also other factors like education levels, industry segment and hours worked
  5. Globally: A woman earns an average $100 for every $140 a man earns
  6. Adding to this imbalance is the fact that women are much less likely than men to have paid work
  7. Way forward: Gender equality is an essential element of an inclusive workplace and this extends to pay
  8. Business, government and academia all have an important role to play in closing the gap
  9. Collaboration among these organisations is key to providing the right opportunities, environments and role models to lead the way for change
  10. 3 powerful accelerators: Digital fluency, career strategy, and tech immersion — to help women close the pay gap
  11. Within decades, the average pay gap could close if women take advantage of three career equalizers and if business, government and academia provide critical support


The facts show phenomenon of gender wage gap. Note the reasons and way forward for mains answer.

Commonwealth unveils initiative to stamp out domestic violence

  1. The Commonwealth is launching “Peace in the home” programme on Women’s Day
  2. Aim: An initiative to help member states tackle domestic violence, which remains a stubborn stain on communities, disproportionately impacting women
  3. The will include toolkits to help governments across the Commonwealth involve multiple agencies — such as schools, doctors and hospitals, as well as government — and law enforcement agencies to work together effectively
  4. It will help countries highlight and share details of initiatives that had been particularly successful at dealing with domestic violence
  5. There will also be a mentoring programme for women, and an initiative to address the issue of violence around elections and politics
  6. The programme will continue through till 2018, when there is expected to be an accord on ending domestic violence in the Commonwealth
  7. Fact check: 38% of women murdered globally were killed by an intimate partner
  8. UN estimates that one in three women has suffered from violence in one form or another


Important for prelims. Can be used in a mains answer or essay.

[op-ed snap] No economy for women


  1. According to a recent report by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), India and Pakistan have the lowest rates of women’s labour force participation in Asia
  2. This is in sharp contrast to Nepal, Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia that have the highest
  3. Richer nations like Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia fall in between
  4. Moreover, even this low rate of labour force participation seems to be declining


  1. The National Sample Survey found that while in 1999-2000, 25.9% of all women worked, by 2011-12 this proportion had dropped to 21.9%
  2. This is in stark contrast to worldwide trends
  3. Of the 185 nations that are part of the ILO database, since the 1990s, 114 countries have recorded an increase in the proportion of women in the workforce, and only 41 recorded declines, with India leading the pack

The importance of access:

  1. A heartening explanation could be that with rising incomes, women have the opportunity to escape harsh labour in farms and on construction sites, and focus on their families
  2. But a more pessimistic and possibly realistic explanation might be that with declining farm sizes, rising mechanisation, and consequently dwindling labour demands in agriculture, women are being forced out of the workforce
  3. If true, this has serious implications for future policy


  1. Research has shown that when women have access to more work opportunities, they gladly take them
  2. The India Human Development Survey (IHDS), jointly organised by researchers from the National Council of Applied Economic Research (NCAER) and the University of Maryland, finds that the provision of work under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) has brought more rural women into wage labour
  3. Among MGNREGA workers in 2011-12, a whopping 45% were not in wage labour before the scheme was initiated
  4. Moreover, the provision of MGNREGA work has far greater impact on women’s paid work than that of men
  5. Increased availability of wage work also enhances women’s control over household decision-making

Exploring other avenues:

  1. NREGA work by itself cannot be expected to provide consistent stable employment for women, it is imperative to explore other avenues
  2. From a policy perspective, two main challenges have to be addressed for augmenting women’s workforce participation rates
  3. First, in view of shrinking farm work, we need to create opportunities for women to move from agricultural to non-agricultural manual work
  4. Second, we must foster a work environment that allows more women, especially urban and educated women, to take up salaried jobs

Relation between road and work:

  1. In her research, Lei Lei, a sociologist at the University of Maryland, finds that in villages where roads were constructed between the first (2004-05) and second (2011-12) waves of IHDS, both men and women were more likely to undertake non-agricultural work but this effect was greater for women
  2. Such work has a cascading effect as construction of concrete roads also improves transportation services such as buses, which, in turn, could facilitate movement of the rural workforce, especially women, into non-agricultural work in neighbouring villages and towns

Need for facilities in job:

  1. At the other end of the employment spectrum, however, there is a need to make it possible for educated women to continue to work even while raising families
  2. Where women continue to bear the major share of household work and childcare, there is prevalence of a rigid work environment in India
  3. There is also a dearth of family-friendly work institutions
  4. This creates impediments to women’s access to white-collar jobs in the formal sector
  5. Second, long distances between the home and the workplace increases both commuting time and work burdens, leaving workers with even less time for family duties
  6. Another aspect of the skewed work-family equation for women in India is the demand for investing in children’s education over professional achievement

Contrast with the West:

  1. Research by Alaka Basu, a sociologist at Cornell University, and Sonalde Desai highlights the contrast between the reasons for fertility decline in the West
  2. There it was fuelled by the desire for self-fulfilment among both men and women
  3. In India, small families have emanated from the desire to promote future achievements of children by focusing on their education rather than on better employment prospects for the parents
  4. This has led to urban and educated Indian women dropping out of the labour pool in contradistinction to their counterparts in Japan and Korea
  5. They have instead opted out of marriage, resulting in a dip in fertility rates in the latter countries to barely 1.3 child(ren) per couple
  6. Neither of these, however, seems an optimal outcome for society
  7. The only way this conundrum can be addressed is by encouraging workplaces to become more responsive to family needs and to promote sharing of household responsibilities between both genders — something that Scandinavian countries have emphasised

Sharing the burden:

  1. Few organisations are willing to consider challenges involved in generating a work-life balance
  2. Even before the influx of global firms in India, work structures in Indian companies and even the government were highly inflexible
  3. Over the past two decades, these demands have grown
  4. With rising global competition, Indian firms have chosen to follow the American model with demands for extended work hours as well as attendance on Saturdays and Sundays
  5. This creates a time bind for both men and women where something must give

Millennial Careers: 2020 Vision study:

  1. A recent study titled ‘Millennial Careers: 2020 Vision’, by ManpowerGroup, conducted across 25 countries and encompassing 19,000 working millennials and 1,500 hiring managers, found that young workers in India worked 52 hours per week as against, say, 42 hours by their counterparts in Canada
  2. Work-family balance requires increased participation by men in household chores and caring for children
  3. However, workplace inflexibility makes for difficult choices, involving trade-offs between investing in careers of husbands vis-à-vis those of wives, often resulting in women taking a back seat and at times even dropping out of the workforce

The Economic Survey 2016-17:

  1. The Economic Survey 2016-17 expressed concern that the demographic dividend is already receding, reducing the opportunity for the Indian economy to catch up with its East Asian counterparts
  2. However, the numeric consequences of reducing obstacles to women’s full economic participation far exceed the demographic advantages of having a larger pool of young workers
  3. It is thus high time to talk of the gender dividend rather than the demographic dividend


The op-ed throws light on an important issue of the society. The points in this article can be used for writing Mains answer.

Widow has right to property

  1. A district court in Delhi: A widow has the right to enjoy the property bought by her husband in her name in the manner she wants, and her daughter and son-in-law cannot lay claim to it
  2. The case: The court ruled in favour of a 65-year-old woman who challenged the refusal of her daughter and son-in-law to vacate a portion of the house at Shastri Nagar in north west Delhi
  3. Lajwanti Devi wanted back the portion of the property given to her daughter and son-in-law in 1985 but they refused to vacate
  4. It held that the woman is the owner of the house and the property was bought by her husband in 1966 in her name to “provide her a secure life” after his death


Once again, judiciary empowering women on property rights.

[pib] Know about #WeAreEqual campaign

  1. The Ministry of Women and Child Development has initiated a social media campaign – #WeAreEqual
  2. It is targeted at raising awareness about gender discrimination
  3. The campaign will culminate into the celebration of International Women’s Day marked by the prestigious Nari Shakti Award ceremony, in which the Hon’ble President will honour individuals and institutions for their exemplary contribution to women’s empowerment


A Prelims tit-bit


Compensating rape victim is govt’s obligation, not charity: Bombay HC

  1. The Bombay High Court: Rape victims are not beggars and giving compensation to women victims of crime is the State’s obligation and not charity
  2. The Bench noted that as per directions given by the Supreme Court, a sum of ₹1 lakh has to be given to a victim within 15 days of registration of FIR
  3. In this case, the government has failed to do so. This is contempt of court order. Only after the victim came to court the government paid her one lakh
  4. The scheme: Under the “Manodhairya Yojana” launched in October 2013, the Maharashtra government gives compensation of ₹3 lakh to women who are victims of rape and other crimes
  5. Apart from the monetary compensation, the government, under the scheme, also provides counselling to the victim and vocational or educational training, if required


The judgement can be quoted in ethics paper; also know about the scheme mentioned above.

NHRC notice to States on hysterectomies

  1. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) issued notices to the Karnataka and Maharashtra governments over an unusually large number of hysterectomies being conducted on women without medical justifications
  2. Issue: There were several incidents of doctors performing hysterectomies on women in the Kalaburagi, Yadgir, Hassan and Raichur districts of Karnataka as well as in the Osmanabad district of Maharashtra for allegedly commercial reasons
  3. The women would go to their gynaecologists complaining of bleeding, abdominal pain or urinary tract infections, and would return with their uterus removed
  4. The victims’ lives were endangered as they suffered complications after the surgeries
  5. Despite the intervention of the Karnataka State Commission for Women and civil society, the “menace” has continued, said the NHRC
  6. NHRC: There is a “serious issue of violation of human rights of the poor patients, mostly illiterate and coming from rural background”
  7. Right to Health is a basic human right


The issue can be a pointer in mains. The issue has become serious after the tribal women died after such surgeries last year. Revise NHRC chapter from your polity book.

Sex offenders’ list in Kerala soon

  1. In a first for the entire country, Kerala will soon have a sex offenders’ register and a comprehensive relief fund for sex crime survivors
  2. Register: Would be kept in the public domain & would contain all identification details of sex offenders
  3. Fund: Interim relief would be provided to the survivors of sex crimes, children and adults, from the proposed relief fund


Important for prelims. Can also be quoted in mains as a step taken for rehab of such victims and that can be taken up all across the country.

Turkey lifts scarf ban on women soldiers

  1. Turkey’s Army is lifting a historic ban on women officers wearing the Islamic headscarf in the officially secular country
  2. The move, ordered by the Defence Ministry, applies to officers working in the general staff and command headquarters and branches
  3. Women may wear the headscarf underneath their cap or beret so long as it is the same colour as their uniform and does not cover their faces
  4. Background: The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) co-founded by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has long pressed for the removal of restrictions on women wearing the headscarf
  5. Turkey lifted a ban on the wearing of the Muslim headscarf, known as the hijab, on university campuses in 2010
  6. It allowed women students to wear the headscarf in state institutions from 2013 and in high school in 2014
  7. And in the latest key reform before the Army’s move, Turkey in August for the first time allowed policewomen to wear the Islamic headscarf as part of their uniform


The issue is raging across the world, especially France etc. Can be a pointer in mains.

[op-ed snap] A battle lost?


  1. The right thing to do for any politician seeking to embark on change is to not give in to resistance after making the decision
  2. R. Zeliang stepped down as the Chief Minister of Nagaland, had taken the bold decision to conduct long-pending urban local body elections on February 1 with 33% reservation for women in accordance with the 74th Amendment to the Constitution

Opposition to the move:

  1. The move, predictably, resulted in strong opposition from tribal groups who sought to use the issue of Naga autonomy as a ploy to resist it
  2. Zeliang should have stuck to his government’s order and sought more public acceptance by rallying the many in favour – in particular, Naga women who would have finally got their constitutionally mandated stake in local governance
  3. Instead, he chose to take a U-turn and termed the implementation of the decision as “null and void”, emboldening tribal organisations to demand his resignation
  4. Following a series of agitations by two tribal groups: the Joint Coordination Committee and the Nagaland Tribes Action Committee, Mr. Zeliang finally resigned, but not before some drama was played out in the ruling Naga People’s Front

Pressurized to resign:

  1. It was clear that Mr. Zeliang was being pressured to resign not just by status quoists among tribal groups but also by his rivals in the NPF
  2. Some legislators were seeking the return of the former Chief Minister and MP, Neiphiu Rio, who had been suspended from the party last year on grounds of “anti-party activities”
  3. Immediately, in what is now becoming a routine act in Indian politics following any intra-ruling party intrigue, the legislators were taken to a resort in Kaziranga and confined there to prevent defections
  4. Fearing a split, Mr. Zeliang resigned, and the party’s senior leader and supremo Shurhozelie Liezietsu was nominated as the 11th Chief Minister of the State by 42 of the 49 NPF legislators
  5. Just before Mr. Liezietsu was sworn in on Wednesday the agitation was called off by the tribal organisations, signalling an end to this round of turmoil

Challenges for the new government:

  1. The NPF-led coalition under the leadership of Mr. Liezietsu has its task cut out
  2. It must focus its energies on the Naga peace process, which remains unresolved despite the reported signing of an accord between the Centre and insurgent groups in 2015

Going against the status quo to take a progressive decision is always a difficult endeavour in politics or in government. Such decisions yield enthusiastic support from those in favour of change; at the same time, they invite strong responses from reactionary sections. We still live in a patriarchal world, where men hardly want to give space to women.


There will be no direct question on this issue but it is important to see how a 33% reservation for women that is provided by the law, can upturn the ruling party.

Set up mechanism to delete sex determination ads: SC

  1. What? The Supreme Court ordered three Internet giants — Google, Microsoft and Yahoo — to immediately set up their own in-house expert bodies to keep tabs on and delete online pre-natal sex determination advertisements
  2. The intent of the order was to make these search engines responsive to Indian law
  3. This step is in addition to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare’s move to set up a nodal agency to receive complaints on violation of Section 22 of the 1994 Act
  4. Legal provision: Section 22 of the Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act of 1994 prohibits advertisements relating to pre-natal determination of sex and imposes punishment
  5. However, ads continue to appear online, rendering the law toothless


Just be aware of the happenings. It might be quoted as a point in mains answer as to what steps are taken towards improving child sex ratio.

[op-ed snap] Sex offender registries don’t work


  1. Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi once again reiterated the need to set up a national sex offender registry after a convicted sex offender allegedly confessed to raping hundreds of girls for over 10 years in New Delhi
  2. These registries are not a novel suggestion
  3. They have been operational in the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and a few other English-speaking countries for more than a decade

Sex offender registration laws:

  1. Sex offender registration laws typically require offenders convicted of a sexual offence to periodically check in with law enforcement agencies, such as the police, informing them about where they are residing, their place of employment, and provide details of their physical description
  2. In addition, these laws often place severe restrictions on where a previously convicted sex offender can reside and work
  3. This in theory is meant to aid officials to track and monitor former sex offenders
  4. The laws in the U.S. and South Korea go even further:

They allow the public to access these records so that the community may be aware of a sex offender in their locality

  1. This data is generally accessed through websites that will provide you the name, physical description, address, and photo of all the sexual offenders near you
  2. Gandhi has vouched for a similar system in India where the public can have access to such records

Impact on crimes:

  1. While sex offender registration laws and public access to these records create a sense of security to parents and residents, they have failed in making any significant difference in sex crimes
  2. Sometimes they create more harm than good
  3. Even in the U.S., where stringent registration laws with public access have been around for over 30 years, several independent studies arrive at the same conclusion: that these registers are simply not reducing sex crimes
  4. A study concludes that public having full access to data result in an actual increase in reoffending
  5. Tremendous associated costs and damage is imposed on law officials and former convicts with these laws

Negative impacts:

  1. With no positive outcomes from these registries, these laws disproportionately result in severe hardships to former offenders
  2. As a consequence of being on the register, former convicts often find it very difficult to gain meaningful employment and have very limited options in finding housing as many localities are proudly branded as ‘Sex Offender-Free Zones’
  3. Several studies find that because of open and free public access to these registries, former convicts often face threat, harassment and violence from other members of the community
  4. Their status as former sex offenders has the effect of stigmatising them for life, rendering reformation and a dignified life after prison impossible

Ms. Gandhi’s suggestions:

  1. A troubling aspect of Ms. Gandhi’s suggestion is that she wants to include even juveniles and persons standing on trial for sexual offences to be on the register
  2. The hasty proposal to include even undertrial persons on the register ignores a basic consideration for civil rights of an accused person and the disproportionate impact it would have on their lives while only being accused of an offence
  3. Similarly, the proposal to put children on a sex offender register displays a complete lack of understanding of their rights under the Constitution and our international obligations under the UN Convention for the Rights of the Child (UNCRC)

Framing sexual offences:

  1. Before proposing a sex offender registry it is significant to have a look at how our sexual offences have been framed
  2. At present, the Protection of Children From Sexual Offences Act, 2012 criminalises consensual sexual intercourse with minors and between minors
  3. Two 17-year-olds who have consensual sexual intercourse with each other can be imprisoned for a minimum term of seven years under this law if convicted
  4. A brief look at the cases registered under POCSO Act is sufficient to tell us that most special courts are now barraged with romantic cases instigated through complaints filed by objecting parents
  5. In the state of the current law, a person could possibly face the consequences of being on the register for a lifetime for having a consensual sexual relationship

Our institutional failure:

  1. To effectively tackle the incidence of sexual offences will require a hard look at our own institutional failure in tackling these cases
  2. The rate of conviction for the offence of rape is at an abysmal 29% and worse still, the rate of pendency for rape cases is at a staggering 86.2% (National Crime Records Bureau, 2015)
  3. A study conducted by the Centre for Child and the Law, NLSIU (2016) on the functioning of children’s courts in Delhi found that 67.5% of victims do not even testify against the accused
  4. The study further found that conviction resulted only in 16% of the child sexual abuse cases in Delhi
  5. Even in the present case, where the former convict allegedly confessed to raping hundreds of girls over a period of 10 years, we must question why the investigative machinery failed completely
  6. What happened to the complaints and investigations into these cases assuming that at least some of them registered a complaint?
  7. Why did it take a decade for them to nab a dangerous criminal? Where is the institutional set-up and mental health evaluations to deal with violent sex offenders and paedophiles?
  8. In the background of weak investigative and institutional machinery and overwhelming evidence showing that these sex offenders’ registries simply don’t work
  9. Gandhi’s suggestion that the recent attacks in Delhi could have been prevented if a national sex offender registry had been implemented seems far-fetched and unrealistic
  10. The Delhi attacks expose the glaring gaps in our existing systems that need to be urgently addressed before we jump to formulating new solutions


Man can’t claim married sister’s property: SC

  1. SC: A property inherited by a woman from her husband cannot be claimed by her brother
  2. It referred to the provision of the Hindu Succession Act
  3. Language used in Section 15 clearly specifies that the property inherited from the husband and father-in-law would devolve upon the heirs of husband/father-in-law from whom she inherited the property
  4. Uttarakhand HC order: The verdict came on an appeal filed by a man challenging a March 2015 order of the Uttarakhand High Court that found him to be an unauthorised occupant in a property in Dehradun where his married sister, now dead, was a tenant


Not very important, just be abreast of the happenings.

[op-ed snap] Bowing down to patriarchy


  1. Implementation of reservation of seats in local body elections for women, to the order of 33% or more


  1. In rural areas the quota has helped improve local governance, enhancing outcomes in delivery of civic services related to drinking water supply, sanitation and irrigation, among others
  2. In urban local bodies, the visible impact has been more quantitative in terms of representation rather than qualitative, with success being linked to emphasis on gender sensitisation by civil society and political parties

Other side of the story:

  1. It is unfortunate that the Nagaland government, after initial steadfastness to hold the long-delayed urban local body polls on February 1, declared the elections as “null and void”
  2. This was due to some tribal bodies who opposed reservations for women, sought to disrupt the process
  3. Rather than bowing to this pressure, the State government led by the Nagaland People’s Front should have enforced the rule of law
  4. A substantial number of towns participated in the elections despite a bandh called by the tribal bodies reflects that public support for affirmative action as mandated by the 74th Amendment to the Constitution

Special Status of Nagaland:

  1. Article 371A of the Constitution secures a special status for Nagaland
  2. But as the civil society groups striving for reservation have argued, urban local bodies are not part of traditional Naga society, and ULBs are constitutional bodies to which customary Naga laws cannot be applied
  3. The conduct of the long-delayed elections was achieved after a protracted legal struggle led by women’s groups
  4. Arguments against women’s reservation invoking Naga customs have been consistently quashed by the courts, ultimately paving the way for elections to be announced for February 1

Submissive to pressure:

  1. The State government submitted to pressure exerted by the Naga Hoho, an apex group of 16 tribal groups, which smelled blood and sought Chief Minister T.R. Zeliang’s resignation
  2. The State government then wrote to the Centre seeking exemption for Nagaland from Part IXA of the Constitution — which is clearly untenable
  3. The Centre, meanwhile, sees Nagaland merely through the lens of the still- pending peace accord with some insurgent groups
  4. This milieu has emboldened patriarchal forces to assert themselves and deny women their constitutionally guaranteed rights of representation in local bodies
  5. Civil society and women’s groups now have their work cut out in realising their just demand for electoral representation


Denial of women’s rights cannot be a measure of the State’s autonomy. This op-ed has important information that will widen understanding of the Naga situation. Make note of b2b.


74th Amendment:

  1. 74th Constitutional Amendment Act, 1992 is aimed to strengthen the ULBs through devolution of power towards decentralization
  2. The aim and objectives of 74th constitutional amendment is:
  • To set up institutional mechanism to facilitate decentralization
  • Demarcate role of ULBs &specify their function
  • Specify areas deemed as urban to include new urbanizing areas
  • Ensure representation of pubic specially deprived class/woman

Nirbhaya Fund lies unused, SC told

  1. Issue: Crores allocated for the Nirbhaya Fund for initiatives to support women’s safety and dignity lie unused as crime against women continue to peak
  2. The annual budgetary allocation made to the fund hardly reached the ones needed it for various women welfare schemes


A point for mains answer on women safety issues. Know about the fund for prelims from b2b.


The Nirbhaya Fund:

  1. The government had announced the Nirbhaya Fund in 2013 to accelerate programmes for women safety
  2. This was after the December 16, 2012 brutal gang rape of a 23-year-old which had shocked the conscience of the entire nation and exposed the vulnerabilities suffered by women in the National Capital
  3. Corpus: Rs. 10 billion
  4. The fund is expected to support initiatives by the government and NGOs working towards protecting the dignity and ensuring safety of women in India
  5. The Fund is administered by Department of Economic Affairs of the finance ministry

[op-ed snap] Communities can’t veto women’s reservation

Context: The issue of women reservation going on in Nagaland


  1. The elections for urban local bodies in Nagaland—slated to be held on 1 February—have been postponed in the light of violent protests against the provision of 33% reservation for women
  2. The local elections have been due for more than 16 years now
  3. In September 2012, the Nagaland state assembly had passed a resolution opposing the quota for women
  4. However, this resolution was revoked by the assembly in November 2016, clearing the way for the elections to be held
  5. The assembly and the T.R. Zeliang government were responding to an interim order by the Supreme Court in a petition filed by the Naga Mothers’ Association (NMA)


  1. The NMA argues that article 243(T) of the Constitution, which provides for 33% women’s reservation in municipal bodies, applies to Nagaland as well
  2. The opposite view—spearheaded by Naga Hoho, the apex body of Naga tribes—contends that article 371(A) gives precedence to Nagaland’s customary traditions and laws over the laws passed by Parliament
  3. Moreover, the male-dominated tribal bodies assert that Naga society offers equal opportunity to their females obviating the need for any kind of affirmative action

Reality check on women representation:

  1. In reality, no woman has ever been elected to the state assembly in over 53 years of Nagaland’s existence as a state
  2. It has sent a sole woman representative—late Rano M. Shaiza in 1977—to Parliament
  3. The village development boards in the state, on the other hand, do have 25% seats reserved for women
  4. But most of the tribal bodies which act as the custodians of tribal culture and traditions are dominated by men
  5. As a result, the property and inheritance rights are highly skewed against women
  6. This is also a system developed over the years to keep property from being taken outside the community in the eventuality of a woman deciding to marry outside the tribe

Issue at stake #1. The writ of the Constitution and the Supreme Court against the power of local customs and traditions:

  1. The right of Naga Hoho to speak for local customs can indeed be challenged, but focusing on merely that aspect provides a convenient excuse for not taking the difficult issue head on
  2. As far as gender rights go, Indian laws and community-specific orthodoxies have gone against each other a number of times
  3. The perennial debate on uniform civil code and the recent controversies over the rights of women to enter certain religious places are the best examples
  4. These debates are just a bit more complex in a state like Nagaland due to its unique history, tribal status, a special relationship with the Union of India enshrined in the Constitution, and the fact of it being riven by India’s longest running insurgency
  5. Even a progressive Indian law can quickly be reduced to a conspiracy by New Delhi to dilute Naga nationalism
  6. Beyond gender rights: In Tamil Nadu, animal rights pitted against local traditions in the recent Jallikattu controversy
  7. One-size-fits-all policies designed in New Delhi without accounting for local and varied granularities have indeed been problematic
  8. Autonomy: Equally, the argument for autonomy has also been misused by communities to perpetuate their own internal inequities
  9. This has certainly been the case for gender rights. A uniform civil code guaranteeing a basic minimum on gender rights is imperative and should be non-negotiable

Issue at stake #2. Reservations:

  1. Even if the goal of women’s empowerment is a worthy one, is the policy of reservations the right means to get to it?
  2. This matter was vociferously debated when the United Progressive Alliance government had introduced a constitutional amendment to institute 33% reservation for women in the legislatures
  3. While some members of Parliament had raised excellent points both in support and opposition of that bill, a few had shown their worst behaviour, forcing the use of marshals to evict them from the house
  4. The under-representation of women in Indian legislatures is a fact: among 193 countries ranked by Inter-Parliamentary Union, India’s lower house stands at a poor 145 (behind neighbouring Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal) in terms of women’s representation
  5. But the means to address it can be many: One of the prominent alternatives suggested to reservations in legislatures was reservations in tickets distributed by political parties
  6. But this is not foolproof either as political parties might distribute tickets to women from seats which they don’t expect to win
  7. Another objection to reservations is that women’s empowerment cannot take place by women winning elections against other women
  8. But the outcomes in local body elections—which provide for women’s reservations—show that women are now steadily eating into the unreserved seats as well
  9. Reservations for women are also less prone to creating entrenched political economies which tend to convert public goods into club goods for a handful


Women will be men’s equals only if incompetent women could hold important jobs just like men did. Taking the cue, men in Nagaland should concede and the state government shouldn’t.


This op-ed has excellent arguments supported with examples and facts for mains answer and on issue of women reservation in legislature, not only in Nagaland, but as a whole.

[op-ed snap] Women’s March in the United States: Is India capable of showing a similar level of solidarity for our women?


  1. In the United States of (Divided) America, a protest march spearheaded by women (as well as men), clogged up the streets of Washington, New York and other cities
  2. At the forefront walked the strong, vociferous, bold women who took to the streets shouting at Donald Trump, “Welcome to your first day! We will not go away!”
  3. Women were holding placards that read “Women’s rights are human rights”, “We shall overcomb”, “Girls just wanna have fundamental human rights”
  4. The women channeled their outrage into peaceful protests, with telling, ingenious quotes.

Women’s right protests:

  1. Marches for women’s rights, particularly in patriarchal societies like India, take place in spurts and are seldom accompanied by the support of men
  2. If there is any support from men, they are in insignificant numbers
  3. Interestingly, alongside the mass protests in the United States that took place to show collective dissonance against the new President, miles away in India, a brigade of women gathered to march for the #IWillGoOut campaign, to voice their need to reclaim public spaces
  4. Women in India have often been restricted from walking on the streets alone, particularly at night
  5. The #IWillGoOut campaign was launched to protest against this restriction and to exhbit anger against the large-scale sexual molestation incident in Bengaluru on December 31, 2016


The op-ed is about an agitation of international scale that one must be familiar with and draw comparison with the 2012 agitation of India on Nirbhaya case. However, it is a matter of concern that such mass agitation failed to change the statistics of rape cases in India. Let’s watch out for the changes it brings in America.

[op-ed snap] Making cities safer with public transport

Issues with women safety sans public transport:

  1. The security that a well-used, vibrant public transport system offers is often overshadowed by talk of CCTV cameras
  2. Once-sleepy towns that are now buzzing with malls that are open until late haven’t lit up their streets or increased bus frequencies
  3. Even as bedtime across urban and semi-urban India is delayed and a nightlife emerges, the public transport system seems to be dormant
  4. The development of our towns, which today has come to be defined by the large brands that set up shops, is restricted to a privatized pattern of consumption that restricts movement to a set of people who can afford private vehicles
  5. Perhaps this is one of the reasons that deter women from stepping out
  6. International Labour Organization data shows a decline in the country’s female labour force participation from over 35% to 25% between 2004 and 2011

The case of Mumbai:

  1. In Mumbai, which boasts of a fairly good public transport system, hardly 16% of the workforce comprises women
  2. Even as Mumbai’s population continues to increase, the number of BEST (Brihanmumbai Electric Supply and Transport) buses have reduced from 3,800 to 3,500, of which 10% are always under maintenance
  3. This gravely affects the city’s 2.9 million daily bus commuters, with certain routes discontinued and others non-functioning after a certain hour

The case of Ahmedabad:

  1. A study of Ahmedabad’s Janmarg in the context of gender mainstreaming of public transport revealed that women prefer to take longer routes rather than cross a neighbourhood that is desolate or poorly lit
  2. It also found that the overall travelling cost is high for daily-wage earners due to non-availability of “last mile connectivity”
  3. Late in the evening, when the buses are few or empty, women would prefer to take the autorickshaw
  4. But they would rather drop such late trips altogether because of the higher fares in the three-wheeler
  5. Similarly, the inability of the public transport system to provide the “last mile connectivity” is why most young women in Vietnam ride a scooter to work

Planning the Vienna way:

  1. Vienna was able to incorporate gendered needs in its urban planning through an initial survey that revealed men had a more predictable pattern of movement in the city, while women had a varied pattern of movement owing to their various responsibilities through the day
  2. It also found that women used public transport more often and made more trips on foot than men
  3. Accordingly, city planners worked towards making the city pedestrian-friendly while additional lighting was added to make walking at night safer for women

The way out of the mess:

  1. Women-only buses
  2. Availability of public toilets for women on roads
  3. Bihar example: When the government of Bihar distributed free bicycles to girls in 2007 in a bid to encourage them to continue in secondary school, the female dropout rate reduced drastically
  4. For poor families that could not spare the money for transport to schools that were far away, college too was no longer a distant dream for their daughters
  5. The sea of blue and white in the mornings across Bihar heralded a new vision of empowered girls, claiming the streets and their own movements

Instead of the frustrated attempt at nabbing miscreants by being glued to CCTV camera feeds, perhaps it is time to let women feel confident by being on streets and moving freely through public transport systems that are cheap and efficient, and which cater to the freedom of any pattern of movement any hour of the day, by every socioeconomic class.


This is a new dimension in women safety and work force participation issues. Note it for mains answers.

[op-ed snap] Stemming the moral rot within


  1. On December 31, 2016, the streets of Bengaluru became one of the most dangerous places in the country for women of all ages
  2. Photographs emerged of terrified women there clinging to police officers as mobs surged around them
  3. Reports described the brazen spree of mass sexual assaults that occurred overnight
  4. On the same evening, in another part of Bengaluru, an unrelated violent attack on a woman walking through a dark alley was captured in a spine-chilling, two-minute CCTV video

Issue with Indian men:

  1. In India, masculinity and the progression — some would justifiably call it descent — from boyhood to manhood has never been governed by taught principles or enlightening examples in the majority of cases
  2. Machismo, the objectification of women, and the ability to regard some women with pious fidelity and others with unbridled, disrespectful lust are learned behaviours for most Indian men, whose fathers, grandfathers and higher forefathers have all carried on in the same vein

A proactive policy attention needed:

  1. Creative thinking is needed to encourage the emergence of a new breed of more gender-sensitive men who should be taught to respect women not only in the privacy of their family settings but also in wider society and in public places
  2. They will have to contend with the misogynistic forces of globalisation, including everything from the numbing effects of pornography, to the dehumanising impact of the trafficking of women for prostitution
  3. A useful tool in curbing runaway sexism and sexual violence could be a much greater degree of advocacy for gender sensitivity by the government
  4. It should begin with gender education from the primary school level, through the years of high school and university learning
  5. The overall interpretation of the statutes by law enforcement officials need to be more sensitive
  6. Police attitudes in dealing with victims of sexual violence need to be forced into a more sensitive mode through aggressive monitoring and carrot-and-stick incentivisation

Changing primitive notions:

  1. In terms of broader social attitudes, the preoccupation with the anachronistic notion of “outraging the modesty” of a woman needs to go



It is time that people stop blaming women who wear “Western attire” for “inviting” sexual assault. Think of some ways that can be used to stop the horrifying act of molestation. This could add to your essay on gender issues.

SC widens ambit of Domestic Violence Act

  1. In a landmark verdict, the Supreme Court has widened the scope of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005
  2. It ordered the deletion of the words ‘adult male’ from Section 2(q) of the law
  3. The section deals with respondents who can be sued and prosecuted under the Act for harassing a married woman in her matrimonial home
  4. It paves the way for prosecution of women and even non-adults for subjecting a woman relative to violence and harassment

Online search engines should check sex determination ads, says Supreme Court

  1. SC: Online search engines Google, Yahoo and Microsoft are under an obligation to check pre-natal sex determination advertisements
  2. Directed them to develop in-house methods to prohibit such content
  3. The companies have agreed to follow the Pre-conception and Pre-natal Diagnostic Techniques (Prohibition of Sex Selection) Act
  4. Auto-block Technique: Developed by the three companies which prohibits advertisements on sex determination

US society uncomfortable about women leaders: Obama

  1. US Prez Obama: U.S. society is uncomfortable with powerful women
  2. That is why the United States has not yet elected a woman President

SC upholds bar on automatic arrests in dowry cases

  1. News: SC has upheld a 2014 Supreme Court verdict that men cannot be automatically arrested on dowry harassment complaints filed by their wives
  2. Reason: Dowry harassment law has become a menace, more often used as weapons rather than shields by disgruntled wives
  3. Dowry harassment: A cognisable and non-bailable offence & if guilty, a person faces up to 3 years’ imprisonment and fine under Section 498A of IPC
  4. Highest cases: Cases under Section 498A made up 4.5% of the total crimes charged under different sections of the IPC- more than any other crimes excepting theft and hurt
  5. Lowest conviction: Charge-sheeting rate is 93.6%, while the conviction rate is only 15%, which is lowest across all heads

Three Indian-American women in race to make history in US politics

  1. News: 3 Indian-Americans figure in a list of 19 women who could make history if elected to Congress in November
  2. Candidates: Pramila Jayapal, running for House of Representatives from Washington state; Kamala Harris, running for Senate from California; and Lathika Mary Thomas, running for the House on a Republican ticket from Florida

Other benefits of Maternity Bill

  1. For the first time, women adopting a newborn, aged below three, and ‘commissioning mothers’ will also be entitled to maternity benefits and will get leave for three months
  2. Commissioning Mother: A biological mother who uses her egg to create an embryo implanted in another woman
  3. W-f-H: If the nature of work permits, woman may also be allowed to work from home (W-f-H) after the period of maternity leave
  4. Creche: Must be provided at establishments with at least 50 workers, within a certain distance
  5. Women will be allowed four visits to the crèche in a day
  6. The amendments is believed to help approximately 1.8 million women workforce in organised sector

India joins Norway, Canada with longest maternity leave

  1. Context: Rajya Sabha recently passed The Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill doubling the maternity leave for women from 12 weeks to 26 weeks
  2. News: The Bill brings India to 3rd position in terms of the number of weeks allowed for maternity leave, behind Norway (44) & Canada (50)
  3. Aim: Increasing women’s participation in the workforce which is decreasing day-by-day
  4. However, a woman who has two or more children will continue to get only 12 weeks maternity leave

Women MPs pitch for paternity leave

  1. Why paternity leave? Men leave the burden of bringing up kids to women & paternity leave can sensitise them on this issue
  2. Also, when fathers take more paternity leave, it may increase the ability of mothers to engage in paid work, according to the U.S. Department of Labour
  3. Context: Rajya Sabha recently passed The Maternity Benefits (Amendment) Bill doubling the maternity leave for women from 12 weeks to 26 weeks
  4. Background: India doesn’t have a law mandating paternity leave
  5. From 1999, the Centre allows male staff to take 15 days paid leave

Paid maternity leave increased to 6 months

  1. News: Union Cabinet approved amendments to the Maternity Benefit Act of 1961 to increase paid leave for expectant mothers from 3 months to 6 & a half months
  2. In a first, women adopting a newborn and those having babies through surrogacy will also be entitled for maternity leave for three months
  3. These amendments are applicable to factories with at least 10 workers & will help around 18 lakh women workers in the organised sector
  4. Amendment also facilitates work from home and mandatory provision for crèche for factories with at least 50 workers

India’s widening gender gap a concern, says ILO

  1. News: International Labour Organisation (ILO) expressed concerns over the widening gender gap in workforce in India
  2. According to the ILO, there is a considerable difference in the level of men and women participation in the labour market
  3. While there is a difference of 25% in workforce participation rate of men and women worldwide, in India it is up to 40%
  4. The gender gap in India is very big and the level of women’s participation is going down which is a source of concern
  5. Future: India plans to ratify 2 core ILO conventions soon by amending the Child Labour Act

81% Indian women in STEM jobs feel discriminated

  1. Nearly 81% women in India working in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics) jobs perceive a gender bias in performance evaluation, a study found
  2. Women in India tend to drop out of workforce at key phases in their lives, most notably around childbearing years and later at mid-management levels
  3. Consequently, there are few women left to fill roles in top management
  4. While women in STEM are highly ambitious and driven, but gender bias and hostile work cultures make them feel stalled and hasten their decisions to quit sooner than their male counterparts

Greater role of women in the military

  1. News: Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar pitched for greater role of women in the armed forces
  2. Context: The psychological barrier of male dominated military was recently broken with the induction of female fighter pilots
  3. Suggestions: Raising an all-women battalion
  4. Stationing of women on warships
  5. Induction of women through the National Defence Academy
  6. Allowing girl students in Sainik schools
  7. If the Army and the Navy are opened up for combat roles for women, India will join the small club of countries in the world, including US, Israel, to have such a system

Sexual harassment law likely to be amended

  1. Centre plans to amend the rules dealing with sexual harassment cases
  2. Changes: To make the committee on sexual harassment share its findings with the complainant in cases where no action is recommended against the accused
  3. The panel will not only have to provide a copy of its report to the complainant but would also have to consider any representation against its findings as an appeal before completing its report

Judges should not disclose victim’s name in sexual assault case: HC

  1. Context: HC ordered judges not to mentioned victims name in the sexual assault cases as it affects victim’s reputation
  2. Background: In judgement of molestation case in 2013, district and sessions judge had mentioned the victim’s name

Frame national policy for relief to rape victims: Supreme Court

  1. Context: SC rapped Govt for its National Policy to financially compensate for rape victims
  2. SC issued notice to the Centre, States and UTs on the question of effective implementation of Section 357 A of the Cr.PC
  3. Section 357 A: Mandates States to co-ordinate with the Centre to prepare a scheme for providing funds to compensate and rehabilitate victims or dependents
  4. SC: Setting Nirbhaya Fund is not enough for rape victims

All-woman crew of INSV Mhadei sets sail for Mauritius

  1. Context: Navy’s all-woman crew sailing vessel Mhadei is set for a voyage from Goa to Port Louis in Mauritius
  2. Indian Naval Sailing Vessel (INSV) Mhadei: The first open-ocean voyage of the Navy’s all-woman crew
  3. Aim: To expose the young crew to the weather that they will confront during the circumnavigation of the globe scheduled for 2017

Domestic violence Act misused: Centre

  1. Govt: Sometimes the provisions of the Domestic Violence and Anti-Dowry Acts are misused and several NGOs have also given reports supporting it
  2. Data: Only 13 persons were convicted out of the 639 charge sheeted in 2014 under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act 2005
  3. Why low conviction rate? In many cases, the husband and wife reach a compromise at a later stage and the offences under the Act are of civil nature

A step towards gender equality

  1. Context: The Navy has granted permanent commission to seven women officers
  2. It has formalised plans to grant permanent commission in eight branches from 2017
  3. Additional avenues for employment for women officers have also been opened up
  4. From 2017, women officers can choose to join as pilots of maritime reconnaissance planes as also in the naval armament inspectorate cadre
  5. Significance: A step towards giving equal status to women officers
  6. Background: In a landmark judgement in October last year, the Delhi High Court granted permanent commission for women

Shani Shingnapur temple lifts ban on women’s entry

  1. Context: The agitation for women’s entry has gained momentum recently
  2. News: The Shani Shingnapur temple trust allowed women to enter the sanctum sanctorum, breaking the tradition followed for several decades
  3. Background: On April 1, the High Court held that it is the women’s fundamental right to go into places of worship and the govt is duty-bound to protect it
  4. Impact: This paves the way for other temples to follow the suit

HRD to boost women’s entry in academia

  1. News: The HRD Ministry has decided to give additional time to women and persons with disabilities to complete their M.Phil and Ph.D
  2. Women students would also be given maternity leave of 240 days which will be excluded from their total time of study
  3. Reason: Many women are getting enrolled for higher education but not many are seen in the faculty
  4. Aim: To promote participation of women and persons with disablities in research sphere

‘Daughterly guilt’ haunts Indian working women

  1. News: A survey found out that in India and China women didn’t want to leave elderly parents in others’ care
  2. Traditionally, India has had poor representation of women in the workforce in junior, middle and senior management levels
  3. Reason: Prominent reason is the affluence of urban male breadwinners
  4. Challenge: Though, the number of women coming into the workforce has increased, but Indian companies are losing 11% of their female workforce every year as a percentage of those employable

Women outnumber men in entry level IT hiring

  1. Context: Report by Software industry body – NASSCOM
  2. News: India’s technology sector is hiring more women in entry level positions than men
  3. Women employees are also maturing from managing support roles to handling core business for their respective companies
  4. Importance: It is a sign of growing gender parity in the largely export-driven IT and Business Process Management services sector in the country
  5. Statistics: The Indian IT-BPM sector employs around 3.7 million people directly of which women employees account for around 34%

NITI Aayog launches Women Transforming India campaign

  1. News: Initiative launched on International Women’s Day, in partnership with the UN in India and MyGov
  2. Context: With this, NITI Aayog seeks to engage directly with women leaders from across urban and rural areas of India
  3. Relevance: NITI Aayog is seeking for entries in the form of written essays/stories
  4. These stories should reflect new ground broken by women in empowering themselves/others, or of challenging stereotypes
  5. Rewards: Winning entries will receive a certificate of appreciation from NITI Aayog and the UN in India
  6. Important for SDG: This initiative is also a step forward in furthering the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which have Gender as a stand-alone goal

Learn about Nari Shakti Puruskars

  1. The awards are conferred on the occasion of International Women’s Day to acknowledge women’s achievements
  2. It is given to eminent women and institutions in recognition of their service towards the cause of women empowerment
  3. The award are given in 6 categories named after eminent women personalities in the Indian history
  4. They are Kannagi, Rani Gaidinliu Zaliang, Rani Ahilyabai Holkar, Rani Lakshmibai, Rani Rudramma Devi and Mata Jijabai

Nari Shakti Puraskar Awarded to TIFAC

  1. News: The President conferred Rani Lakshmibai Award (Nari Shakti Puraskar 2015) to Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC)
  2. Reason: It has done good work for women empowerment in R&D through Intellectual Property Rights training
  3. TIFAC runs a programme as a part of scheme called ‘Knowledge Involvement in Research Advancement through Nurturing’ (KIRAN)
  4. KIRAN: It provides training to women who are highly qualified in science and allows them to work from their homes
  5. Most of these women are pursuing their career in the area of IPR

What is significance of Mahila e-Haat?

  1. This is web page based and has unlimited reach and can, therefore become catalyst in creating a new generation of business women
  2. Will strengthen the socio-economic empowerment of women as it will mobilize and provide better avenues to them
  3. More than 10000 Self Help Groups (SHGs) and 1.25 Lakh women beneficiaries would be benefited from the day of launch of the site itself
  4. Will culminate into Women’s Entrepreneurs Council which will help to expand this initiative further and give it an institutional shape
  5. Help to meet the goal of financial inclusion of women and it is a big step forward for empowerment of women

Mahila e-Haat, an online marketing platform for women launched

  1. Context: Will provide access to markets to thousands of women who make products and are spread all over the country
  2. Objective: Initiative for meeting aspirations and need of women entrepreneurs which will leverage technology for showcasing products made/manufactured/sold by women entrepreneurs
  3. An initiative for women across the country as a part of ‘Digital India’ and ‘Stand Up India’ initiatives
  4. Participation: Open to all Indian women citizens more than 18 years of age and women SHGs desiring for marketing their legal products/services

Gender-parity in world parliaments

  1. Context: Recently, Inter-Parliamentary Union released a report titled “Women in Parliament in 2015”
  2. News: The average share of women in all parliamentary seats following elections held in 2015 was 22.6%
  3. The global percentage of women lawmakers has gone up in the last decade
  4. Mexico is close to achieving gender parity with 42.4% women parliamentarians in its lower house
  5. Statistics: Out of 67 parliaments across the world, women account for at least 30% of membership

IAF to get first batch of women fighter pilots soon

  1. News: India could get its first women fighter pilots by June 2016
  2. Background: In October 2015, the Defence Ministry, for the first time, allowed women in combat roles beginning with the Air Force
  3. Challenge: Govt. will move in a phased manner, as necessary facilities for accommodation and training need to be created
  4. The number of women officers joining the forces shows a steep drop in intake last year as compared to the last 3 years
  5. Future: Navy would induct the women pilots in all roles except where staying overnight on board was involved

India’s first Gender Park at Kozhikode in Kerala

  1. Importance: It is the first of its kind gender equality convergence centre in Asia
  2. Context: An initiative of the Social Justice Department of the Kerala Government to promote research and other initiatives to enable total gender equality
  3. Why? To encourage women to take part in developmental and decision making process
  4. Relevance: It has been launched as part of supporting the efforts of the State and Central governments in ensuring an inclusive, discrimination free society
  5. Scope: Covers issues pertaining to all 3 genders and in accordance with the 2015 gender and transgender policies of the state government
  6. Focus: On learning, research and capacity development

Maharashtra gets first all-woman panchayat

  1. News: Bubnal Gram Panchayat in Shirol Taluka in southern Maharashtra has become the first all-woman panchayat in the state
  2. Relevance: All members of the panchayat are women with no political background
  3. Importance: The village leads a first in the State to adopt 100% political representation for women at the Gram Panchayat level
  4. Way ahead: Bubnal’s example has inspired other villages in the neighbourhood

Act against Devadasi system, SC tells States

  1. Context: The prevalence of the illegal practice of “dedicating” young girls as Devadasis
  2. Background: Union govt. has issued advisory to all States and UTs to stop illegal activities of subjecting young girls into the Devadasi system
  3. The News: SC directed all States and UTs to strictly enforce Centre’s advisory
  4. Legality: Section 372 of IPC prohibits selling minors for purposes of prostitution and the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956, also makes prostitution an offence in or in the vicinity of public places
  5. Prevalence: The dedication of Devadasis still prevails in Devanagiri district of Karnataka

More women executives mean more profits: study

About three in 10 companies worldwide have no women either in executive positions or on their board

  1. Companies with 30 per cent female executives rake in as much as 6 percentage points more in profits, according to a study
  2. Feeding into a global debate over the scarcity of women in decision-making business roles
  3. The conclusion stems from a study of about 22,000 publicly-traded companies in 91 countries ranging from Mexico to Norway and Italy
  4. The presence of women in corporate leadership positions can boost a firm’s performance
  5. This suggesting a reward for policies that facilitate women rising through corporate ranks
  6. The women in executive ranks resulted in better profitability, female CEOs or board members did not have a statistically-significant impact on the bottom line

Lack of ‘suitable’ jobs holding back women employment

A World Bank paper shows decline in female labour force participation over the past decade

  1. Main reason is scarcity ofsuitable job opportunities” outside farming and close to the place of residence
  2. According to NSSO & employment surveys, women participation rates in India fell sharply after 2004-05
  3. This was because of a fall in agricultural employment
  4. According to ILO, India ranks 120 among 131 countries on women labour participation
  5. Traditionally, this has been blamed on a culturally patriarchal society and rising family incomes that allow more women to stay at home

660 One Stop Centres for Women to be set up

  1. Govt. has already setup 20 One Stop Centres, called Sakhi and 660 such centres are proposed to be set up.
  2. Seven big states as well as all UTs have operationalised 33% reservation for women and the remaining states are expected to implement it soon.
  3. This will help to deal with crimes against women more effectively.
  4. Within 2 months, all new cell phones will have panic buttons for women in distress.
  5. Vrindavan will have country’s first large facility for nearly 1000 widows where they can live, work, get training etc.

The new quota

Bihar’s job reservation quota of 35% for women is a welcome gesture, but focus has to be on increasing opportunities and capabilities.

  1. With not many jobs being created in the public sector, the policy offers more symbolic value than radical content.
  2. Labour force participation rate among women of working age, at 9 per cent, is one of the lowest in India, and far below the all-India average of 33 per cent.
  3. It would help more women take regular wage earning formal sector jobs.
  4. Which would help improve the status of women and make society sensitive towards gender equality in social and economic spaces.
  5. Public institutions that have a representative workforce are likely to provide better services.

Nitish Kumar keeps election promise, rolls out 35 percent reservation for women

The 35 per cent reservation extended to women on posts of police constable would now be extended to cover other state government vacancies, too.

  1. This 35 per cent reservation for women will be applicable to in all government jobs including reserved and unreserved category.
  2. Presently state is already providing 35 percent reservation for women in recruitment as police constables and sub-inspectors.
  3. There is also 50 percent reservation for women as primary school teachers and in the Panchayati Raj system.

What works for women at work

WCD ministry decision to increase maternity leave from the current 12 weeks to 26 weeks for all women is welcome.

  1. Establishments with 30 women workers or 50 total workers to provide crèche facilities for their employees.
  2. India has shockingly low rates of recognised work participation by women (around 24 per cent) that have even declined over the past decade.
  3. Huge economic loss for the country, a sign of the continuing low status of women and their lack of agency in Indian society.
  4. Most women in India are involved in unpaid work in their homes or communities which is socially necessary but unsung and unrewarded.
  5. Patriarchal attitudes, social restriction on mobility, concerns about commuting time and about security at work and the difficulties of managing domestic responsibilities along with the paid jobs are the other impediments.
  6. Address the huge issue of unpaid work, by recognising it ,reducing it, and redistributing it..
  7. Deal with concerns about women’s security, focus on education that reduces the number of female dropouts and improves quality.
  8. Work towards reducing the huge gender gaps in wages in most activities.

Telangana becomes first State to make gender education compulsory

  1. Telangana has become the first State to introduce compulsory gender education at the graduate level.
  2. The book discusses gender in its composite form without limiting itself to crime against women.
  3. It also touches upon complex subjects like female-centric history and male-female relationships.
  4. The textbook has been introduced on a pilot basis in engineering colleges.

Enhancement of representation of women in CAPFs

  1. The 33% reservation of Constable level posts will be in CRPF & CISF.
  2. 14-15% posts at Constable level will be reserved in border guarding forces i.e. BSF, SSB & ITBP.
  3. The Committee on Empowerment of Women in its Sixth Report of the (2010-11) had recommended urgent need to provide due representation to women in paramilitary forces.
  4. The CRPF, considered to be world’s largest paramilitary force mostly deployed in law and order duties and the anti-Naxal operations, has just around 6,300 women in its rank.

Govt to increase maternity leave

  1. The union govt. is set to increase the maternity leave for women employed in private firms from the existing 12 weeks to 26 weeks.
  2. Govt. has taken into account the 6 months of breastfeeding that is required post childbirth.
  3. Currently, the women are entitled to 12 weeks of maternity benefit whereby employers are liable to pay full wages for the period of leave.
  4. However, women employed in govt. jobs in India get a 6-month maternity leave.
  5. The International Labour Organisation recommends a minimum standard maternity leave of 14 weeks or more.

Devadasi system: Home Ministry asks States to take strong action

  1. MHA was surprised by findings that the ancient Devadasi system continues to exist in some parts of the country.
  2. Home Ministry has asked all States to take strong action against those involved in the heinous practice which is against dignity of women.
  3. It directed that the laws against it be implemented “in letter and spirit” and steps taken to ensure that the victims are rehabilitated.
  4. It still exists in certain parts of the country, especially in Beriya and Nat communities in the name of religious practices.

What is Devadasis System?

  1. Devadasi system is a religious practice in parts of southern India, whereby parents marry a daughter to a deity or a temple.
  2. The marriage usually occurs before the girl reaches puberty and requires the girl to become a prostitute for upper-caste community members.
  3. A National Commission for Women (NCW) report says that the practice still continued at several places and at least 2.5 lakh Dalit girls were dedicated to temples on the Karnataka-Maharashtra border.

Sexual harassment cases at workplace more than double in 2014

  1. A 3rd of India corporations and a 4th of global companies surveyed in the country were not compliant with Sexual Harassment Act 2013.
  2. The no. of sexual harassment complaints at workplace more than doubled to 526 in 2014.
  3. This could be devastating not only to the lives and careers of individual employees but also invariably weaken productivity and the morale of employees.
  4. Despite increased public awareness, sexual harassment continues to plague Indian workplaces.

Devadasis: SC pulls up Centre for delay in response

  1. The SC expressed alarm at the govt’s delay in filing a response to a PIL petition against the practice of dedicating girls as Devadasis to temples.
  2. PIL says girls are forced into Devadasi system and pushed into prostitution.
  3. The court gave the Centre a 4-week deadline to come clear about what steps it had taken so far to end the social evil.

33% quota for women in paramilitary forces

Union Home Minister told Parliament that the govt. was considering 33% reservation for women in the paramilitary forces.

  1. The announcement comes at a time when the forces are struggling to fill even the 5% quota decided during the UPA govt.
  2. According to the data available with the MHA, women comprise only 2.04% of the paramilitary forces.
  3. The implementation was the biggest hurdle, because the State govts may or may not agree with the Centre over this and the MHA will have no control over it.

India Gate wears orange, to end violence against women

  1. India Gate was lit up in the orange colour to celebrate the International Day of Elimination of Violence against Women.
  2. The event was organised by UN agencies as part of the UN’s global campaign that is set to continue till UN’s Human Rights Day.
  3. UN aims to eliminate all kinds of violence against women and gender discrimination and seeks to end it by 2030.
  4. According to the UN, the colour orange is symbolic of a united fight to end violence against women.
  5. The event addressed issues like eve-teasing, dowry, acid attacks, child marriage, compulsory education for girl child and physical violence among others.

Mizoram, Meghalaya have best gender parity across India, report says

McKinsey Global Institute’s (MGI) “The Power of Parity: Advancing Women Equality in India” report.

  1. Best gender parity in Mizoram, Meghalaya, Kerala, Goa, and Sikkim have been rated in line with Argentina, China, or Indonesia.
  2. Assam, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Jharkhand, and UP grouped as India’s bottom five states on gender parity.
  3. Top five states account for just 4 per cent of India’s female working-age population, Bottom five comprise a larger 32 per cent.
  4. Indian women face extremely high inequality, associated with physical security, autonomy and high inequality on child marriage.
  5. A new score, India Female Empowerment Index or Femdex, based on a sub-set of 10 of the 15 indicators at the state level in India.

Gender inequality in India is high and extremely on gender equality in work, legal protection and political voice, economic opportunity.


Law on equal right for daughters over property is prospective

  1. Shouldn’t all laws be only prospectively enforceable?
  2. Yes, common sense would say and we do have a provision in the constitution for the same.
  3. Art. 20(1) of the Indian constitution imposes a limitation on the law making power of the constitution for criminal laws.
  4. But it does not prohibit a civil liability retrospectively i.e. with effect from a past date. So a tax can be imposed retrospectively.
  5. Hence, this is a specific call out by SC on the inheritance issue!


Now you get the context? Do remember that taxation law amendments can be retrospectively enforced!

[Discuss] Women to get permanent commission in the Navy

The Delhi High Court said it would not allow “sexist bias” to block women’s progress.

  1. In a landmark judgment, the Delhi High Court on Friday allowed women to be granted permanent commission in the Navy, ensuring that women naval officers enjoyed rights similar to their counterparts in the Army and the Air Force.
  2. Allowing a bunch of writ petitions moved by a group of women naval officers, a Division Bench said since women were “here to stay” and since they worked shoulder to shoulder with their male counterparts, the court would “frown upon any endeavour to restrain the progress of women”.
  3. As of now, Navy treated women officers as a group entitled only to a short service commission of 14 years and men were entitled to both short service and permanent commissions.
  4. The petitioners contended that they were losing out on career opportunities and had been deprived of pension because of the forced short service commission.

You think this step encourages women empowerment in India?
Can you list out some more steps taken which helps empower Women?

Govt plans to close down Mahila Bank

  1. The finance ministry is expected to approach the Cabinet with a proposal to close Bharatiya Mahila Bank, (BMB) established in 2013.
  2. There were speculations of a merger between SBI & BMB but let’s wait and watch.

Taking internet to rural women

  1. In a significant initiative aimed at bridging the technology gender divide, Tata Trusts have tied up with Google to launch ‘Internet Saathi’.
  2. The joint initiative announced today aims at empowering women in rural India with the power of the Internet so they may benefit from it in their daily lives.

Gender gap becoming a chasm in labour market

UN report says women are forced to work under harsh conditions.

The Progress of the World’s Women 2015-2016 report comes 20 years after the landmark Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing.

  1. In developing regions, up to 95% of women’s employment is informal, in jobs that are unprotected by labour laws and lack social protection.
  2. In South Asia, the gender pay gap is 35% for women with children compared to 14% for those without.
  3. This is a care penalty that unfairly punishes women for stepping in when the State does not provide resources

Bharatiya Mahila Bank wins Asian Banker Achievement Award 2015


  1. BMB is India’s first all-women public sector bank and was formally launched on November 19, 2013.
  2. Its objective is to focus on the banking needs of the women and promote economic empowerment.
  3. It also seeks to address the gender related issues and will be helpful in financial inclusion.
  4. In Budget 2013-14, Union Government had approved Rs 1,000-crore seed capital for the bank.
  5. Headquarter of Bharatiya Mahila Bank is located in New Delhi.

Beti Bachao Beti Padhao & a few more points


  1. It is a joint initiative of the Ministries of Women & Child Development & Human Resource & Dev.
  2. Twin objectives –  To protect a girl child’s right to life + To empower her with education and life skills.
  3. The BBBP, has initially chosen 100 Gender Critical districts.
  4. Monitorable targets – Improve the Sex Ratio at Birth (SRB) by 10 points a year & Reduce gender differentials in under 5 Child Mortality Rate.
  5. Further – Increase girl’s enrolment in secondary education | Provide toilets for girls.

The GAIN-Amway Malnutrition Mapping Project for India


  1. Major causes of childhood malnutrition – vitamin & mineral deficiencies, as well as sub-optimal breastfeeding practices.
  2. High proportion of anaemic women of reproductive age is linked to 62 % of children in the country showing insufficient vitamin A status.
  3. Several non-communicable diseases were associated with unhealthy diet, sedentary lifestyles and obesity in India.


Insufficient vitamin A raises the risk of decreased immune function, increased morbidity and mortality and blindness.

Nirbhaya’s parents unveil women’s safety device

  1. The device called Bhavani – India’s first comprehensive portable self-defence device for women.
  2. The device is a 10×1 inch baton which can easily fit into a handbag.
  3. Features include – a strobe light, non-lethal stun gun, a 10 foot throw distance pepper spray, panic button which will send five SOS sms with GPS location.
  4. Baba Ramdev’s Patanjali Yogpeeth has already agreed to distribute the device.

UN SC resolution-1325 on women and peace and security

  1. UNSCR 1325 is a landmark international legal framework that addresses the inordinate impact of war on women + the pivotal role women play in conflict management + sustainable peace.
  2. The experiences of men & women in war are different. Women offer a vital perspective in the analysis of conflict.
  3. Resolution 1325 has 4 pillars – Participation, Protection, Prevention, and Relief and Recovery.
  4. How is it implemented? Through the development of National Action Plans (NAP) or other national level strategies.

:( We are working on most probable questions. Do check back this section.

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