PMO's eleven-Point Action Programme to enhance women's economic clout 

The Modi Sarkar is working on a proposal that will soon make all the government benefits in women's name mandatory.

Published: 20th June 2017 08:33 PM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2017 08:33 PM   |  A+A-

PM Modi addressing the crowd. (PTI)

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Men rule is over. Here comes the women power. They cannot be pushed back any more under archaic definition of 'weaker sex'. The Modi Sarkar is working on a proposal that will soon make all the government benefits in women's name mandatory.

This is one of the 11 point formula finalised by the Prime Minister Office (PMO) in consultation with top bureaucrats and policy-makers. The proposal focuses on enhancing women's economic clout as well as infusing overall change in their living standard, education and healthcare. 

It has already been decided at the top level that all central departments will generate gender-disaggregated data (Separate data for women in the country in different schemes) to bridge the gender gaps through new mechanisms that will follow. 

The move is not just about gender equality or equal pay for equal work but it emphasises on giving the power in the women's hand. 

In the priority list, Ministry of Urban Development has been tasked to assure 50% reservation for women in local bodies. 

The Ministry, which is also implementing Swachh Bharat Mission has decided to collect approximate figure on women beneficiaries and women headed households. Since smart cities and other related guidelines emphasises on safe urban spaces for women, such data will also be shared with the Ministry of Women & Child Development. 

Since the government has decided to lower stamp duty and registration charges for women, the Ministry of finance is a recent meeting has been asked to put in place an institutional mechanism. 

" Ministry of finance was also requested to think about collection of data on other schemes as well. The example of Bhamashah Card Yojana was given where a Bhamashah Card is provided in the name of women head of the household. This card is necessary for the family to access any benefits under public welfare schemes of the government. It gives increased decision making power to women in the house," the government note reviewed by the Express said.

Ministry of Finance has been asked to develop financial literacy programs customised for women and incentivise women to open bank accounts in which money is set aside for specific purposes, for example, school fee. 

The government has also asked the ministries to improve the representation in institutions and managerial. A directive has been issued to at least two ministries- Labour & Employment and Ministry of Corporate Affairs. As per company act 2013, it is mandated to appoint at least one women director. 

The Ministry was told to capture data related to women in managerial position on a continuous basis. The HRD Ministry is working on a plan to include gene deer sensitisation in school curriculum. 

Although, it doesn't have mid-day meal data of beneficiaries, it has assured the government to achieve the target soon. The HRD Ministry will also implement a proposal related to conditional cash transfer schemes that encourage school education of girls.    

As far as national social assistance programme is concerned, the central government is extending the benefit to 3.3 crore persons. Of these nearly 2 crore beneficiaries are women. It has also been suggested that at least one-third of MNREGA beneficiaries should be women as per the act.

The recent data that has been culled out indicates that women person days out of total was 56.11% in the financial year 2016-17. So far there is no specifications of women's bank accounts, which would be implemented now. 

"The rise of women empowerment is already visible in certain areas. For example, we have a scheme under national backward classes finance & development in which we have more female beneficiaries than men. But, at the same if you look at the number of overseas scholarship for students with disabilities there are less less women than men. Under white revolution scheme of dairy department, we have 5.1 million women producers of total 15.8 million. Obviously, these are the areas where we need to fill the gaps to make them truly independent," a government officer said. 

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