Government Schemes for Women in India

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Medium shot woman with book smiling at camera

All over the world, in the recent span of years, attention has been given to women empowerment and through campaigns like #heforshe, #metoo, etc… discrimination against women has gained attention and helped raise the voice of the vulnerable. India too in the spirit of empowering the female citizens in the country and recognizing their contribution in the country’s economy, has launched several schemes available for all women in India. We’ll be looking into 5 such schemes today.

Mahila E-haat:

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Mahila E-haat is a direct online market place dedicated to meeting the aspirations of women entrepreneurs. It is a part of ‘Digital India’ and ‘Stand Up India’ initiative where businesswomen from all disciplines can broadcast their product in the online site and thus providing a marketing platform. It was launched by the Ministry of Women and Child Development to support women entrepreneurs, SHGs (Self Help Groups), NGOs (Non-Governmental Organization). Women can register themselves at http://mahilaehaat-rmk.gov.in/en/join-us/ to showcase their products or services rendered by them by leveraging technology to cover a broader market.

One-Stop Centre Scheme:

Stop violence against women, international women's day

One-Stop Centre Scheme is a sub-scheme of National Mission for Empowerment of Women and is popularly known as ‘Sakhi’, implemented on 1st April 2015 by the ‘Nirbhaya’ Fund. Complete assistance including shelter, police desk, legal, medical and counselling services are provided all under one roof with a 24-hour helpline to victims of violence at the One-Stop Centres located pan India. The tollfree helpline number is 181.

Any women facing any kind of violence including sexual, physical, psychological, emotional and economic abuse can contact the centre for support and redressal, whereas special services will be rendered to those aggrieved women facing violence due to attempted acid attacks, witch-hunting, domestic violence, trafficking, sexual assault or sexual harassment who have reached out or have been referred to the OSC.

STEP:

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The Support to Training and Employment Programme for Women (STEP) aims to provide skills that give employability to women and to provide competencies and skill that enable women to become self-employed/entrepreneurs. The scheme is intended to benefit women in the country who are in the age group of 16 and above. A particular project will be for a duration of up to 5 years depending upon nature, kind of activities and number of beneficiaries to be undertaken.

Sectors include Agriculture, Horticulture, Food Processing, Handlooms, Tailoring, Stitching, Embroidery, Zari etc, Handicrafts, Computer & IT enable services along with soft skills and skills for the workplace such as spoken English, Gems & Jewellery, Travel & Tourism, Hospitality, etc…

Beti Bachao Beti Padhao:

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This is an awareness campaign aimed at eradicating female infanticide, foeticide and to raise awareness on welfare services intended for young girls. Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao – The scheme was launched with initial funding of Rs 100 crores. It mainly targets the clusters in Uttarakhand, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Delhi and Haryana. The child gender ratio of age group 0-6 years, in India, stood at 931 girls for 1000 boys and it dropped to 918 girls for 1000 boys in 2011. This gap was first noted in 1991 and started worsening since the census data of 2001.

To bridge the growing gap between the birth of girl and boy infants, the government of India has taken up an initiative to promote Beti Bachao Beti Padhao and many programmes have been organized to promote ‘Save Girl Child’ and to ‘Educate Girl Child‘, since January 2015. The campaign has also received support from the Indian Medical Association.

 Nai Roshni:

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Nai Roshni is a scheme for developing the leadership skills of minority women. The program aims at instilling confidence among women belonging to the minority sections of the society. This scheme will help them to interact better with Government departments and systems, financial institutions, banks across all levels. Nai Roshni also aims to embolden women and help them to move out from the confines of their homes and communities. One of the main thrust areas is to train women of the minority sections and make them fit enough to take leadership roles and also assert their rights.

This will help them to get the due share of various government schemes that could lead to the improvement of living conditions. It also aims at improving the economic empowerment of these women. The target group includes all those minorities who have been notified under Section 2 (c) of The National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992. (Muslim, Buddhist, Sikh, Christian, Parsis and Jain).

To further strengthen the overall canvas of plurality of the society, the act also permits women from non-minority communities to be a part of the above scheme. However, the number of non-minorities should not exceed 25% of the project proposal. The mix should consist of SCs/STs/OBCs and also women with disabilities. Efforts also will be on to bring EWRs (Elected Women Representatives) from any community to be included in this scheme as trainees.

Aishwarya K