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EWRs of PRI participated in UN’s Commission on Population and Development Event


Why is it in the news?

  • Elected Women Representatives (EWRs) of Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) participated in “Localizing the SDGs: Women in Local Governance in India Lead the Way” event at New York.

EWRs

About:

  • India has more than 4 million EWRs, constituting approximately 46% of the total PRI representatives.
  • The 73rd Constitutional Amendment Act of 1992 mandated the reservation of one-third of electoral seats in PRIs for women.
  • Progressively, 22 states and union territories (UTs) have implemented a 50% reservation for women in PRIs as of 2021.

Significance of EWRs:

  • EWRs play a pivotal role in ensuring better distribution of essential public goods at the grassroots level.
  • They contribute significantly to strengthening sustainable development by prioritizing policies that cater to the specific needs of local communities.
  • EWRs have been instrumental in driving social change by championing policies that contribute to a more equitable and responsive society. Notable achievements include the contribution towards decreasing the Total Fertility Rate and improving the median age of marriage for women.

Challenges faced by EWRs:

  • EWRs often face undervaluation and neglect of their contributions due to entrenched patriarchal social norms and stereotypes.
  • Despite holding elected positions, the actual decision-making powers are sometimes wielded by husbands or male family members, undermining the autonomy of EWRs.
  • The policy of rotation of reserved seats prevents EWRs from leveraging their experience and expertise over consecutive terms.

Initiatives to address challenges:

  • Aimed at enhancing the leadership skills and managerial capabilities of EWRs to effectively discharge their duties.
  • Providing training and support to equip EWRs with the necessary knowledge and skills to navigate the complexities of local governance.
  • Initiatives like Drone Didi and Lakhpati Didi aim to empower EWRs by providing them with access to technology and financial resources to drive local development.
Localization of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

·       Involves translating the global SDGs into actionable initiatives at the local level, aligned with national frameworks and community priorities.

·       Local governments play a crucial role in supporting SDG achievement through bottom-up action and integrating SDGs into local development policies.

·       The SDGs, comprising 17 goals and 169 targets, were adopted by the UN in 2015, providing a comprehensive framework for addressing global challenges.

·       Localization ensures that SDGs are contextualized to the specific needs and realities of local communities, driving inclusive and sustainable development.

 

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