Budget 2020: Will it ensure safety of women?

Budget 2020: Will it ensure safety of women?

Nirupama Subramanian

By Nirupama Subramanian,

"While the workforce participation of women has actually dropped to 23% in 2018,  NCRB data shows that crimes against women are increasing. Budget 2019 was supposed to be a woman-friendly budget with an allocation of 4.91% towards projects and schemes for women. The Nirbhaya Fund and schemes like MUDRA, Ujjwala Yojana, Saubhagya and finance for Self Help Groups are steps in the right direction yet much more need to be done.

This budget needs to focus on both long-term and short-term and direct and indirect measures to ensure safety, well-being, education and employment of women. I would like to see funding for gender sensitization programs in all schools and colleges, for the police and public service workers. Focusing on infrastructure like street lighting, adequate transport facilities and roads is critical for the mobility and employability of women.

Direct measures should include provisions to incentivize women to return to work after maternity-both for the returning mother and organizations. Increasing the tax breaks for women-owned and run businesses and incentives for companies that contract to women-owned businesses will support women entrepreneurs."

(Nirupama Subramanian, Consultant, Facilitator and Coach in the area of Leadership Development, Change Management and Personal Transformation)