Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Friday called upon the industry to unlock ‘gender dividend’ to put India on a rapid growth path while noting that our female labour force is around 20 per cent.
Virtually addressing an event Vande Mataram, Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav India @75 of the FICCI Ladies Organization (FICCI FLO) Hyderabad Chapter, the Vice President said “ We often gloss over the fact that we have an important demographic dividend we can unlock” and emphasized that women-led industrial workforce can drive growth at a rapid pace.
“We need to draw the best out of this talent pool to power our economy forward. “Women are our growth leaders of the future”, he added.
The Vice President also stressed the need to look into issues that hinder women from realizing their full potential at workplaces. Observing that the pandemic has further deepened employment inequalities between genders, Mr Naidu advised looking at the issues of ‘representation, remuneration and roles’ to empower women.
Referring to the issue of pay disparity, Venkaiah Naidu noted that equal pay for equal work continues to be a basic demand that is still unfulfilled even in most developed countries and in the highest strata of the corporate world.
He observed that the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report 2020 points to a pay disparity of around 15% even in advanced economies and that no country has achieved gender parity in wages yet.
In this regard, the Vice President said India should lead the way in bridging the divide. Lauding the progressive Maternity Benefit (Amendment) Act, 2017, he said it showed the way to even developed countries by increasing paid maternity leave from 12 weeks to 26 weeks. The law will help mitigate the gender pay gap that is found in working women who go through motherhood and child care, he added.