New Delhi: Setting aside 33% of Lok Sabha seats for women will send a strong message to the world, said Michelle Bachelet, executive director of the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women).
Implementing such a policy would result in India leading the world in gender quality, Bachelet, also UN under secretary general, said in New Delhi on Wednesday.
Empowering women economically and politically through social protection schemes for health and education and quotas for political participation is not just the right thing but the smart thing for nations to do, she said.
Social protection funding for health, education and women’s empowerment should be seen as investments and were important despite criticism about high fiscal deficits because they were the reason the recent financial crises did not lead to social collapse, Bachelet said.
Increasing women’s workforce participation is important, she said, as household health and education outcomes also improve. This extended to corporate boardrooms, where quotas for women had led to improved business performance, Bachelet said.