Imphal, March 8,
Hon’ble Governor of Manipur, Dr. Najma A Heptulla lauded the womenfolk or ‘Imas’ of Manipur for their genuine courage in times of challenging state issues adding that Ima market which comprises of about 5000 women is a symbol of economic empowerment of women. Empowerment of women means a state in which a woman’s opinion is taken seriously- be it at home or office or politics or public space and when she is free from discrimination and has a voice in the society. She expressed this at the International Women’s Day Celebration held at Sangai Conference Hall, Hotel Imphal today.
The event was jointly observed by the Manipur State Commission for Women with the State Social Welfare Department on the theme ‘Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change’.
Speaking at the occasion as the Chief Guest, she also stated that she has always been a great supporter of women’s rights and cause of women empowerment.
I move the resolution for 33% reservation of women in the Parliament as early as 1995. Let us be strong and judge ourselves on our own balances, she also said.
Hon’ble Chief Minister Shri N Biren Singh; Minister (Social Welfare) Smt. Nemcha Kipgen; Chairperson, Manipur State Commission for Women, Prof. Binota Meinam; Chairperson, Manipur State Development Corporation, Smt. S.Satyabhama Devi and Chairperson, Manipur State Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Smt. Sumatibala Ningthoujam also attended the function as Special Guest, President and Guests of Honour respectively.
Highlighting that women will have no problem if there is conscious leadership, Governor Najma Heptulla appreciated CM N Biren for rendering social work in empowering the marginalised women population of the State.
Stating that the present Government has stepped down at micro level for promoting the welfare of women, Chief Minister N Biren mentioned that loans were given to the women weavers and around more than 2500 free looms are also provided by the Industry Department.
About 6-7 ima markets are almost constructed in the hill districts, he added. He also stated that special courts are set up to deal crime against women and various schemes initiated by the Prime Minister like the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana and widow schemes have been launched to better the situation of women in Manipur.
Delivering the presidential address, Social Welfare Minister Nemcha Kipgen expressed that women empowerment is the key to strengthen their participation in the decision-making which is the most important key to socio-economic development. She further said that the International Women’s Day is an opportunity to transform this momentum into action, to empower women in all settings. “Gender equality is the first step to women empowerment”, she also stated.
As a Social Welfare Minister, she also appealed the women-folks of Manipur to avail all the opportunities under the various programmes and schemes undertaken by the department for empowering women such as training programmes like tailoring, embroidery etc. apart from other schemes for protecting women facing violence both in public and private sphere lives.
In her welcome note , Prof. Binota Meinam appealed the Government to frame a separate policy and act for the welfare of women who are victims of various atrocities.