PM Modi Says Women’S Economic Empowerment Fuels Growth, Need To Create Level-Playing Field Where Women Achievers Become The Norm

PM Modi Says Women'S Economic Empowerment Fuels Growth, Need To Create Level-Playing Field Where Women Achievers Become The Norm

Gandhinagar, Aug 2: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said the economic empowerment of women fuels growth and the most effective way to empower women is through a “women-led development approach.”
“When women prosper, the world prospers,” Modi said while virtually addressing the ‘Ministerial Conference on Women’s Empowerment’ organised at the Mahatma Mandir in Gujarat capital Gandhinagar as part of India’s G20 Presidency.
He stressed on the need to create a level-playing field for women entrepreneurs in the current scenario.
“Our goal should be to create a level-playing platform where women achievers become the norm. We must work to remove barriers which restrict their access to markets, global value chain and affordable finance,” the PM said.
“The economic empowerment of women fuels growth. Their access to education drives global progress. Their leadership fosters inclusivity and their voices inspire a positive change,” he said.
To emphasise his point, the PM said “Mahatma Gandhi’s famous charkha (spinning wheel) was found by a woman named Gangaben, who lived at a village nearby.”

The most effective way to empower women is through a women-led development approach. “India is making strides in this direction,” Modi said.
“India’s President Droupadi Murmu sets an inspiring example herself. She comes from a humble tribal background, but now leads the world’s largest democracy and serves as the commander-in-chief of the world’s second largest defence force,” the PM said while addressing the delegates virtually.
The right to vote and right to contest elections have already been granted to women in India since the beginning, he said.
The PM informed the audience that 1.4 million, that is 46 per cent of elected representatives in rural local bodies in India are women.
More than 80 per cent of nurses and midwives in India are women, he said, adding the country is proud of their achievements for being the first line of defence during the coronavirus pandemic.
“Women-led development has been a key priority for us in India. Around 70 per cent of loans under the PM Mudra Yojana have been sanctioned to women. These are loans up to Rs 1 million to support micro level units. Similarly, 80 per cent of beneficiaries under the Stand Up India (government programme) are women,” he said.
Nearly 100 million cooking gas connections have been provided to rural women so far under the PM Ujjwala Yojna, Modi said.
The number of women in technical education in the Industrial Training Institutes has doubled since 2014 and nearly 43 per cent of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) graduates in India are women, he said.
About one-fourth of space scientists in India are women and their talent and hardwork is behind the success of the country’s flagship programmes like Chandrayaan, Gaganyaan and Mission Mars, the PM added.
“Today, more women are enrolling in higher education than men in India. We also have one of the highest number of women pilots in civil aviation. And female pilots in the Indian Air Force are now flying fighter aircraft,” he said.
Modi also said women hold the key to innovative solutions for climate change due to their close association with nature.
“I recall how women led the first prominent climate action in India in the 18th century. The Bishnoi community of Rajasthan, led by Pujya Amrita Devi, started the Chipko movement. It was a movement to hug trees to prevent unregulated logging. Along with several other villagers, she laid down her life for the cause of nature,” he said.
Women entrepreneurs are significant contributors to the global economy. The role of women entrepreneurs in India is not new, he further said.
“Decades ago, in 1959, a few Gujarati women in Mumbai came together to create a cooperative movement, Shri Mahila Griha Udyog, the makers of Lijjat papad. Since then, it has transformed the lives of millions of women and their families,” the PM noted. (Agencies)