(GIST OF YOJANA) Women Empowerment and the Budget 2018-19  [MARCH-2018]


(GIST OF YOJANA) Women Empowerment and the Budget 2018-19

 [MARCH-2018]


Women Empowerment and the Budget 2018-19

The budget 2018-19 is historic and revolutionary. The Finance Minister has presented a non-populist Budget providing significant incentives for new jobs, cutting corporate tax to 25 per cent for companies with sales upto Rs. 25 crore, creating labour flexibility by allowing contract labours in all sectors, enhancing agriculture, women empowerment and launching what could become the world’s largest hospital treatment scheme serving 100 million poor households.

India has been working towards empowering her women ever since independence, and especially since the 1990s. The government and non governmental sectors have both been pushing ahead with programmes aimed at imparting education to women, giving them better health care, providing them with means of livelihood and opportunities to participate in the decision making process at home and in the society. Special attention is being paid to improve the lot of the girl child giving her better chances of survival and opportunities for living a life of fulfillment.

The 73" Amendment to our constitution in 1993 was a major milestone in this direction. The amendment made provision for reservation of seats for scheduled castes and tribes proportionate to their population in the panchayat area. The impact of reserving one third of seats for women in the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PR1) has been fruitful, and has empowered women both politically and socially. At present, there are approximately 200,000 panchayat representatives in India, out of which around 75,000 are women making it the largest number of elected women in the world.

Therefore, Budget 2018-19 has launched various schemes to empower Indian Women:

  • The Prime Minister’s Ujjwala Scheme, under which free LPG connection were given to 50 million peOple will now be targeted at 80 million poor women.
  • The budget’s pro-women focus is seen in the announcement of a special mission to provide LPG connection in the name of women members of poor households.
  • Rs.24 crores have been sanctioned for National Women’s Commission.
  • 20 million new toilets will be constructed under the aegis of the Swachh Bharat Mission. This will have a positive impact on women’s dignity, girl’s education and overall health of the family,
  • Rs. 280 crores have been provided for ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ programmes. ‘Beti Bachao Beti Padhao’ is another social campaign of the Government of India that aims to generate awareness and improve the efficiency of welfare services intended for girls. The scheme has been launched with an initial funding of Rs. 100 crores. Women upliftment is nearly impossible if issues like illiteracy, inequality, sexual harassment and female infanticide are not combated in the right manner.

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