President Pranab Mukherjee today presented 15 women and 5 organisations with Nari Shakti Puraskar for the year 2015 on the occasion of International Women’s Day at Rashtrapati Bhawan. The award is given to eminent women and institutions for their distinguished service to the cause of women, specially belonging to vulnerable and marginalised sections of society. It carries cash award of two lakh rupees and a certificate for institutions and one lakh rupees and a certificate for individuals.
The awardees of Nari Shakti Puraskar include Anganwadipuram Gram Panchayat, Mallapuram, Kerala, Gudiya Shyam Sevi Sansthan, Varanasi, Jagori, Delhi and Konoklata Mahila Urban Cooperative Bank , Assam.
In his address, Mr Mukherjee said every member of society – male or female has, equally, the right to live in security, peace and dignity. He said it is intolerable that in this day and age, women are still being exposed to barbaric brutality and violence because they are women. Mr Mukherjee said violence or fear of violence reduces the freedom and development of everyone particularly, women and children.
He observed that community programmes for efficient implementation of Government policy have proven to be among the best instruments for the broadest outreach. He expressed confidence that the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao programme will be successful in addressing malnutrition, maternal mortality and bridging gaps to improve the status of women in our society.
The President said the best practices for the development of women – that have worked well at the grassroots in States and Union Territories should be adopted and up-scaled in central government schemes. He said an effective convergence of all elements – social, economic or political – could help develop a comprehensive approach to the holistic empowerment of women.