Jhabua: The tribal-dominated Jhabua district of Madhya Pradesh stands out for high representation of women in the local administration and politics.
Heading the list of such administrators is District Collector Jaishree Kiyawat, who was posted here in 2011. Besides, the District Superintendent of Police (DSP) too happens to be a woman, Krishnaveni Deshawatu.
Both officers feel their presence in the important decision-making posts has led to a sea change in the manner in which women are treated in Jhabua.
Kiyawat said that after she took charge over two years ago, several welfare schemes for women had been launched in the district. "The participation of women in such schemes has gone up and this has boosted their self-confidence."
She said women are attending Gram Sabhas (village meets) in large numbers. She said women representatives at Panchayat level are doing good job, citing the example of Sarangi Gram Panchayat under Petlawad Tehsil.
The Collector said the Sarpanch of Sarangi village is a woman, Phundi Bai, who is into her second term, and her Panchayat has been selected for the Rashtriya Gaurav Gram Sabha Puruskar.
Kiyawat said the Sarangi Panchayat will received this award at the hands of the Prime Minister at a function in New Delhi on April 24.
She said interacting with women and helping to solve their problems her a sense of satisfaction.
Deshawatu, who took over as DSP on February 27, 2009 and said things have changed for better after she came here.
The SP said crimes against women had come down and the fairer sex feels much more secure than before.
Deshawatu said a special desk and squads had been set up for early action on complaints by women. This had led to an increased sense of security amongst them.
Besides these two, there are a number of other women occupying important posts in the district. These include Women and Child Development Officer Neelu Bhatt, Sub-Divisional Officer (Police) Rachna Bhadoria, traffic in-charge Deepmala Dharu, District Panchayat President Kalawati Bhuria and District BJP chief Nirmala Bhuria.