National Commission for Women
National Commission for Women
The National Commission for women was formed in January 1992 under the National Commission for Women Act, 1990. The statutory body is engaged in reviewing the Constitutional and Legal safeguards for women, recommending remedial legislative measures, enabling grievance redressal and advising the Government on all policy matters concerning women. This article looks at the functions and scope of the body.
Constitution of the Commission
The Commission comprises of:
- A Central Government nominated Chairperson who is committed to the cause of women.
- Five Central Government nominated members amongst persons of ability, integrity and standing who are experienced in law/legislation, trade unionism, management of an industry potential of women, women’s voluntary organizations, administration, economic development, health, education or social welfare. It may be noted that at least one of these members must be associated with the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes community.
- A Central Government nominated Member-secretary who is an expert in the field of management, organizational structure or sociological movement or an officer who is a member of a civil service of the Union of an all-India service/a civil post under the union with appropriate experience.
Vision and Mission
The initiative is envisioned to safeguard Indian women and make them fully empowered to access all their entitlements, with the opportunity to contribute in all walks of life. Its mission is to enable women in achieving quality and equal participation in all spheres by securing their entitlements through suitable policy formulation, legislative measures, effective enforcement of laws, implementation of schemes/policies and devising strategies for solving specific problems/situations arising out of discrimination and atrocities against women.
The Commission is vested with the following powers and responsibilities:
- Investigate and examine all matters connected with women safety as per the National Commission for Women Act and other laws.
- Furnish a report to the Central Government on an annual basis on the execution of safeguard measures, and make recommendations for the effective implementation of these safeguards.
- Make a timely review of the existing provisions of the constitution and other laws that affect women, and make recommendations in terms of legislative measures to address any gaps, inadequacies or shortcomings in such legislation.
- Address any instances of violation of the constitutional provisions and other laws connected with women.
- Deal with complaints and take suo-moto notice of matters concerning the deprivation of women’s rights and non-implementation of laws enacted to protect women.
- Conduct promotional and educational research with the object of suggesting methods that ensure due representation of women in all spheres and identify factors that hinder their advancement.
- Engage and advise on the planning process concerning the socio-economic development of women.
- Evaluate the progress of women development under the Union and any State.
- Inspect the premises where women are kept as prisoners and approach the concerned authorities for essential remedial action.
- Fund litigation involving issues that has a bearing on a large body of women.
- Make periodical reports to the Government on matters related to women.
- Any other matter that may be referred to it by the Government.
- Provide a legal framework that addresses issues concerning women through studying and monitoring all matters concerned with the constitutional and legal safeguards provided for women.
- Facilitate grievance redressal of women, examine their complaints and take suo-moto notice of the cases relating to deprivation of women’s rights and non-compliance of statutory policies.
- Enabling women to equally benefit from the development process by participating and advising on the planning process of socio-economic development of women.