THE All India Democratic Women’s Association, in a statement issued on May 5, has welcomed the Supreme Court judgment in the brutal and horrific ‘Nirbhaya’ gang-rape and murder case giving the maximum punishment allowed by the law. However, AIDWA is against the death penalty for a number of reasons including the fact that it is often arbitrarily asked for and given.
THE first central executive committee (CEC) meeting of the All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) after the 11th all India conference at Bhopal was held on March 21-23 in Delhi. It was very well attended, with 79 out of 99 CEC members and six out of 12 special invitees from all the 22 states where AIDWA is present. A central secretariat meeting was held prior to the CEC on March 21. The CEC meeting was marked by lively interactions and a unified team spirit.
A delegation comprising of Brinda Karat, Mariam Dhawale (AIDWA general secretary), PK Sreemati (treasurer, MP, Lok Sabha), Sudha Sundarararman and S Punyavathi (vice-presidents), Kirti Singh (legal convenor) and Asha Sharma (JMS, general secretary) met the chairperson of National Human Rights Commission HL Dattu on March 20 and appraised him of the tremendous repression and atrocities committed by the West Bengal Police and state government on the students and youth. The students and youth were protesting against the malpractices in the appointment of primary teachers.
MARCH 8, International Women's Day was celebrated and March 10, death anniversary of the great social reformer and pioneer of women’s education in Maharashtra, Savitribai Phule, was observed in Thane-Palghar district of Maharashtra by AIDWA with tremendous zest and enthusiasm. During the week from March 3-10, over 8,000 women in various tehsils took part in programmes around the three slogans given by the AIDWA CEC:
1. Work for all with equal wages for equal work
2. Rise up against all regressive, Manuwadi and fundamentalist ideologies that deny women equal rights and
AIDWA strongly condemns the savage hike in the price of non subsidized cooking gas cylinders by Rs 86 per cylinder, brought into immediate effect by the BJP central government on March 1, 2017. This is historically the highest increase in the cost of unsubsidised gas cylinders in the country.
WOMEN’S groups have been leading a struggle for 33 percent reservation in the local bodies in Nagaland for the past many years. Elections for 32 urban local bodies (ULBs) notified on December 21, 2016 were to be held after a gap of 16 years. Unfortunately some tribal groups opposed reservation for women under the garb of protecting customary laws. Women who filed their nominations were forced to withdraw and a call was given to boycott the elections. Two people were killed in police firing in the ensuing violence.
THE well-attended first meeting of the AIDWA central secretariat after the Bhopal all India conference held at Chennai last month gave a call for an intensive campaign against the disastrous impact of demonetisation on women. It also called for a massive observance of International Women’s Day on March 8 around these three slogans: Work for all and equal wages for equal work is our right; Rise against the Manuwadi and regressive ideology; Immediately pass the Women’s Reservation Bill.