Andhra to start ‘Gender Budget’, Help Desks to serve women better

Andhra Pradesh could be the first state in India to incorporate a concept called ‘Gender Budget’ in its annual Budget for FY 2021-22 aimed at better serving women.

On International Women’s Day on Monday, Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy emphasised that the Gender Budget should clearly list out the expenditures for women’s welfare under various schemes.

As per the 2011 Budget, only 60 per cent women in Andhra Pradesh were literate while the balance 40 per cent were unable to pursue education.

In order to resolve this issue and lower the burden of providing quality education, the state government has introduced schemes such as the Jaganna Amm Vodi, which encompassed an expenditure of Rs 13,022 crore in two years’ time.

In five years’ time, this scheme will spend Rs 32,500 crore, benefiting over 44.5 lakh mothers and 85 lakh students.

“Women should be given equal rights economically, socially and politically and their services in bettering the society should be recognised,” said Reddy.

He said the state government has spent Rs 80,000 crore in 21 months for women’s welfare through schemes such as Amma Vodi, YSR Cheyuta, YSR Asara and Kapu Nestam.

“Besides ensuring women’s welfare, the government has also focused on empowering women socially, politically, economically and made laws to provide 50 per cent reservation to women in all nominated posts and works,” said Reddy.

Along with 900 Disha patrolling vehicles, the Chief Minister has also launched 18 Disha crime scene management vehicles.

Meanwhile, Suprava Harichandan, the wife of Governor Biswa Bhusan Harichandan, celebrated International Women’s Day at the Raj Bhavan’s Durbar Hall at an event organised by women the employees.

“It is a very important day for all the women as it is celebrated in recognition of their contribution to the society and the equal role played by women in nation building,” she said, as she distributed gifts to the women employees of the Raj Bhavan.

Women’s help desk launched in all Andhra police stations

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy launched dedicated women’s help desks at all police stations in the state virtually on Monday.

These help desks are aimed at offering a friendly and approachable atmosphere to women in a police station.

They are equipped with airport lounge style benches and water dispensers, along with an enlisted panel of experts such as psychologists, NGOs and legal aid among others to access outside support.

Likewise, 900 Disha two-wheelers have been distributed to the police department to thwart crime against women.

“Women and child friendly training has been provided to all Disha patrolling staff,” said an official.

They have also been trained by experts to address not only women and child crimes but also cyber-crimes against women.

The government believes that friendly patrolling police would definitely instill confidence in women.

Police will carry out patrolling duties at predetermined locations such as educational institutions, women’s hostels, offices with predominantly women staff, hospitals, bus and railway stations and other public places.

Andhra Pradesh has also placed an order for 50 cyber safe kiosks which can detect malware, virus and backdoor entries to mobile phones.

The kiosks can also remove malware and viruses from USBs drives. It can also run a security scan to identify malicious apps and provide a risk factor to installed ones.

The kiosks will be provided by the National Forensic Science University in Gujarat.

Meanwhile, Reddy celebrated the International Women’s Day in his office in the presence of women ministers and officials. A father of two daughters, Reddy cut a cake to celebrate the occasion.

“On International Women’s Day, I salute the many undaunted and resilient women from AP who have braved all odds and carved a niche for themselves in various fields,” he said.

The Chief Minister called upon all to take a pledge to end gender discrimination and provide equal and fair opportunities to all.

Similarly, Andhra Pradesh Assembly Speaker Tammineni Sitaram called on women to excel in all the fields to reach their goals.

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