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Championing Women's Rights: Safeguarding Women In Public Policies – IMPRI Impact And Policy Research Institute

Championing Women's Rights: Safeguarding Women in Public Policies

Session Report Anubhuti Mahanta

#IMPRI Gender Impact Studies IMPRI Impact and Policy Research Institute, New Delhi organized “YWLPPF Young Women Leaders in Public Policy Fellowship- Winter’24”, a two-month online immersive introductory leadership certificate training fellowship program to empower young women to become effective leaders in the field of public policy through a comprehensive learning experience delivered by leading women experts in the field. The session’s experts included Dr. Soumyadip Chattopadhyay, Associate Professor of Economics, and Vishwa Vallabha, also a Visiting Senior Fellow at IMPRI, Advocate Aradhana Johri Menon, Director of Majlis Legal Center Mumbai and our program chair, Vibhuti Patel.

Advocate Aradhana Johri Menon spoke about championing safeguards for young women in public policies. She shared her experiences working with Majlis, an organization that provides legal representation to women and children facing violence. Menon stressed that the prevalence of violence against women in India requires not just the creation of new laws, but also holding accountable those responsible for enforcing them.

Furthermore, she talked about criminal law and argued that without effective implementation and support systems in place, the intended benefits of these laws will continue to elude the victims. Menon emphasized that there is often a disconnect between the existence of laws and their practicality on the ground, which perpetuates the cycle of violence and injustice for women in India.

She discussed the challenges in implementing laws designed to protect women, such as the IPC section 498A and the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act of 2005. She highlighted the disconnect between the laws on paper and their practical application, often failing to provide the intended benefits to women. She gave several examples for this, which were the realities of many people in India.

Menon emphasized the importance of accountability over the creation of new laws and the need to work with existing structures to ensure effective implementation and support for victims of violence. She called for greater awareness around gender-based violence, and for measures to be taken to ensure that existing laws are enforced fairly and equitably. She argued that inadequate education and resources for victims of violence was a key factor in creating and perpetuating gender inequality. She called for increased investment in social support systems and for stronger legal protections for women.

The session concluded with a Q&A segment where participants engaged with the speakers, discussing topics such as the challenges of data collection at the local level, the ethical use of big data, and the practical application of laws to support women facing violence. The speakers provided insights and encouraged participants to consider the importance of solidarity, accountability, and practical support in advancing women’s rights and public policy.

Read more event reports of IMPRI here: https://www.impriindia.com/insights/technology-for-women/

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