Encourage women in leadership role for India`s progress: Sonia
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Last Updated: Wednesday, May 11, 2011, 18:02
Rae Bareli: Voicing concern over adverse conditions faced by women in the country, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday said girls should be empowered and encouraged to take up leadership role - starting with their families.

"Half of the country's population comprises women and without their development, progress of society and country is unimaginable," she said while addressing a 'Sabla' programme under Rajiv Gandhi girls’ empowerment scheme in her constituency.

"Girls should come forward and develop leadership qualities to fight for their rights and ensure development of the country," the Congress chief said, adding the low sex ratio reflected the poor condition of women in the society.

She said that discrimination between men and women should be removed and it was need of the hour is that the fair sex work shoulder to shoulder with men.

"I am fully aware that the life of a women is full of struggle due to lack of education and social awareness. We have to end this and utilise the full strength and creativity of women," she said.

"Once women start taking part in decision-making in their family by becoming self-reliant, the situation would change," Gandhi said, adding that UPA government has taken a number of measures including framing laws and launching schemes for uplift of women.

"The base and existence of society is because of women and they should be given opportunities so that their hidden talents come out.

"They should learn to stand up in adverse conditions to make their presence felt," Gandhi said.

Lauding the role of Anganvadi workers in improving the condition of women in rural areas, Gandhi said that their honorarium was doubled in recognition of their contribution.

About the 'Sabla' scheme, Gandhi said though it was launched in 200 district of the country, it would soon cover the entire country due to the encouraging response.

Priya and Rizwana-- two young girls who joined the 'Sabla' scheme, hogged the limelight today as they appeared on the dais with Gandhi.

Priya was greeted by Gandhi as she rose to narrate her experience to the gathering.

"After joining the scheme, my self confidence has received a boost and now I can go anywhere," she said, urging women and girls to come out of their homes and become aware of their rights.

Rizwana fought with her family to pursue education and joined the Sabla group.

Sonia in her address referred to both the girls and talked about their courage before giving them mementos.

Gandhi earlier arrived at Amausi airport in Lucknow this morning on a two-day visit to her Lok Sabha constituency during which she would be meeting workers.

She is likely to visit the rail coach factory in Lalganj.


First Published: Wednesday, May 11, 2011, 18:02

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