Int’l Women’s Day celebrated

YINGKIONG, 9 Mar: The Yingkiong unit of the Arunachal Pradesh Women’s Welfare Society (APPWS), in collaboration with the women & child development department and the Arunachal State Livelihood Mission, celebrated the International Women’s Day [IWD] here in Upper Siang district on Wednesday.

Addressing the gathering, DC Hage Lailang said that “the efforts of the government to empower women at the grassroots level will be possible only when elected women representatives start speaking up for themselves without anybody’s help and know their rights and responsibilities and  participate in the decision-making process.”

Advocating gender equality, the DC said that “change will only come with changing mindset and equal participation from both sides.”

He urged the women to “raise voice against acts that outrage the modesty of women,” and lauded the APWWS team “for its yeoman service towards women empowerment, awareness drive against the drug menace, and various other activities initiated by the APWWS for the welfare of the people.”

Adi Bane Kebang president Tadum Libang sought the APWWS team’s support in improving the education scenario of the district, and in the drive against the drug menace.

Public leader Nobeng Burang said that “women play a greater role in the socioeconomic development of a society,” and commended the works done by the APWWS team.

Yingkiong APWWS unit president Yaken Danggen advised the team to “carry forward the good works for women empowerment in the district.”

District APWWS president Kalpana Perme Sitek emphasised on “empowerment of women and protection of their rights,” and said that, “although women are provided with equal opportunities, there is still miles to go to change the status of women in all aspects.”

On the occasion, two elderly women – Pahi Sibo (104 years) and Asi Sitek [98] – were felicitated as a mark of respect and honour.

The day was celebrated also in Chorta Rijo in Chetam circle of Upper Subansiri district in a befitting manner. More than 500 women participated in the programme.

In Changlang district, the Miao unit of the APWWS celebrated the IWD on Wednesday.

Speaking on the occasion, former minister Komoli Mossang said that, “unlike other districts, the TCL women encounter more problems, ranging from economic inequality to the drug menace.”

“There is a common belief that the tribal women of Tirap, Changlang and Longding (TCL) region enjoy complete freedom, but the fact is that we are bound by circumstances arriving out of customary laws and traditional customs,” Mossang said.

She appealed to the women to support one another in every field, “so that life becomes easy to sail through.”

“The government often talks of gender budgeting in favour of women, but where is it?” she asked, and questioned the government as to “why lady officers from eastern Arunachal are never included in the list of state awardees.”

She also appealed to the state government to “come up with a definite policy to tackle the drug menace.”

Speaking on the condition of the schools in Jairampur subdivision, Mossang said: “There are schools almost in every village, but only schools situated in the outskirts of the town are functioning.”

“Teachers are posted but they hardly perform their duties,’ she said, adding that “the school management committee exists in every school but their performance is questionable.”

Commending the APWWS for persistently working across the state to uplift women, Mossang said that “a society cannot progress and prosper without women participation.”

Singpho Development Society president Jowkhong Singpho described women as “the real guardians of society.”

Miao ZPM Ashamto Tikhak also spoke. (With DIPRO input)