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Ensuring Gender Equality in Development Processes and Plans: Dr. Baljit Kaur

Chandigarh: The Department of Social Security, Women and Child Development held a meeting with the Department of Social Justice, Health Department, Education Department, Higher Education Department, Local Government Department, Labour Department, Police Department, and Transport Department regarding women's welfare schemes. Four of these departments presented a Gender budget statement in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha. Statements are yet to be prepared by the remaining four departments. During the meeting, the ongoing schemes related to women in these departments were reviewed.

Divulging on this matter, Social Security, Women and Child Development Minister Dr. Baljit Kaur stated that the Punjab Government is taking significant steps to promote the empowerment of women. She mentioned that these eight departments will collaboratively prepare a report on women's welfare schemes. Based on the reports prepared by these departments, the percentage of the Gender budget will be increased, considering expenditures, which will ultimately benefit women.

The Cabinet Minister highlighted that the convergence of departments brings together their expertise and resources to implement comprehensive plans for women. The Government aims to create a holistic approach to women's empowerment by collaborating in areas such as education, health, employment, and social welfare, thereby improving the standard of living for women and girls.

The Minister instructed various departments to work collaboratively to implement women's welfare schemes at the grassroots level in a more effective and communicative manner to benefit the maximum number of eligible beneficiaries.

Dr. Baljit Kaur mentioned that the state government is committed to empowering women and girls, and new programs and schemes will be developed under the Gender budget to achieve this objective. She emphasized that the state Government will undertake important initiatives under the current budget to improve girls' education and maternal health.

She explained that the Gender Budget encompasses 100 percent women-specific schemes in every sector, including provisions like free bus facilities, free sanitary pads, financial assistance to widows and destitute women.

Dr. Baljit Kaur added that the Punjab Government, under the leadership of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, is tirelessly working for the welfare of women, directly benefiting ordinary women through pro-women schemes.

Mrs. Madhvi Kataria, Director of the Department of Social Security, Women, and Child Development, stated that the department organized the initial meeting with various departments regarding the Gender budget. During the meeting, all departments were asked to propose schemes that would benefit women. She mentioned that the implementation of a Gender budget has significantly uplifted the status of women in many countries around the world.

She said that a workshop would be held on August 22 for the nodal officers appointed by various departments to implement the gender budget effectively, thus facilitating the ground-level implementation of welfare schemes related to women.

On the occasion, Principal Secretary Health and Family Welfare, Vivek Pratap Singh, Additional Chief Secretary Social Security, Women, and Child Development, Raji P. Srivastava, Additional Chief Secretary Social Justice Empowerment and Minorities, G. Ramesh Kumar, Secretary Higher Education Mrs.Tanu Kashyap, Director of Social Justice Empowerment and Minorities Department, Jaspreet Singh, Director-cum-Joint Secretary, Raj Bahadur Singh, and officials from various departments were present.



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