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International Women Day

International Women's Day (IWD) is celebrated on March 8, worldwide. It is a day when women are recognized for their achievements without regard to divisions, whether national, ethnic, linguistic, cultural, economic or political.

It is a time to call for change and to celebrate acts of courage and determination by ordinary women who have played an extraordinary role in the history of their countries and communities. IWD has been observed since the early 1900's.

The theme of IWD 2018 is:

“Time is Now: Rural and urban activists transforming women’s lives”

IWD 2018 is an opportunity to transform the global movement about women’s rights, equality and justice into action, to empower women in all settings, rural and urban, and celebrate the activists who are working relentlessly to claim women’s rights and realize their full potential.

IWD also wants to draw attention to the rights and activism of rural women who make important contributions to the agricultural and rural economies of all regions of the world. Women constitute about 43 percent of the agricultural labour force in developing countries. In South Asia about 70 percent of employed women work in agriculture.

According to United Nations, much progress has been made to protect and promote women’s rights in recent times; however, nowhere in the world can women claim to have all the same rights and opportunities as men.

Making the promise of the Sustainable Development Goals a reality, ‘to leave no one behind’needs urgent action in rural areas to ensure an adequate standard of living, a life free of violence and harmful practices for rural women, as well as their access to land and productive assets, food security and nutrition, decent work, education and health, including their sexual and reproductive health and rights.


  • World’s 1.3 billion women are poor.
  • The number of women in the workforce is far behind that of men.
  • Women receive 30 to 40 percent less pay than men earn for the same work.
  • From cooking and cleaning, to fetching water and firewood or taking care of children and the elderly, women bear a disproportionate burden of unpaid work across the world.
  • Globally, nearly 65 per cent of people above retirement age without any regular pension are women.
  • A large gender gap remains in women's access to decision-making and leadership.
  • Women are victims of domestic violence and sexual harassment and these are significant causes of disability and death among women worldwide.
  • Educated women are more likely to have greater decision-making power within their households.

Activities related to welfare of women

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare*, Government of India provides various health care services for women’s health under RMNCH+A strategy. The strategy is continuum of care to ensure equal focus on various life stages and to provide comprehensive and integrated health services most importantly to adolescents, mothers and children.

Ministry of women and child development**Government of India promotes social and economic empowerment of women through various policies and programmes, mainstreaming gender concerns, creating awareness about their rights and facilitating institutional and legislative support for enabling them realize their human rights and develop to their full potential.

For knowing more about Women Empowerment Schemes- click here

                             Make everyday International Women's Day.