Gender sensitive development. In today’s times is New Economics, and we are learning to become better at using women’s needs and requirements to further the development process of our country. We, as policy makers, have started treating gender as the ‘new driver for growth’ Inclusive democracy can never be possible without the participation of women in everything, equally.

“ We are moving towards building a women empowered India , the increase in budget for various women welfare schemes and projects The focus of our government has been on both health and education, from maternity benefits, enrolment in educational institutes, nutrition to skill education and training.” Said Ms Poonam Mahajan, Member of Parliament of Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP)  while speaking at a panel discussion on “Women Parliamentarians as Change Agents” under the fourth FICCI KAS Dialogue Series organised by ICCI Forum of Parliamentarians and Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung (KAS) in association with FICCI Ladies Organisation (FLO) here today.

“We are here fighting a battle to uphold strong democratic practices in our country and the path that we must follow is of ‘politics of inclusion’, not exclusion.We must come up with ideas that invite women to stand up for themselves, that encourage men to support the women and we ultimately reach a stage of holistic healthy development.” Said Smt. Supriya Sule, MP of  Nationalist Congress Party,(NCP)while speaking at the occasion

“Various policy decisions by centre and various state governments go a long way in helping women, we still have to work on our societal infrastructure to become more inclusive and gender sensitive. Till the time we don’t respectfully create a space for women within our societies, and change the mind-set of people, not much will change on the ground.” Said Smt. K Kavitha, MP of Telangana Rashtra Samithi

“In our quest to get a strong legislation like the Women’s Reservation Bill, we must not forget that first we need to change our outlook and then encourage more women to participate in politics, not only by reservation, but also by choice.It is not only the women MPs who has to come together, but it is also the partnership of all the MPs that can turn this political imagination into reality. The percentage of women in the Lok Sabha has gone up by only a small margin from 4.4% in 1951 to 11% in 2014 “ said Ms Poonam Mahajan 

 “The FICCI-KAS Dialogue Series is an endeavour to bring together elected representatives, thought leaders, opinion shapers and subject experts to discuss new paradigms of international gamechangers, topics of contemporary interest that are of high geo-economic and strategic relevance to India and the world.” Said Ms Pinky Reddy, President FLO FICCI while speaking on the occassion

 “We cannot deny that women’s leadership in political decision-making is a fundamental for gender equality. It facilitates women’s direct engagement in public decision-making. It is also a means of ensuring better accountability to women and Through this dialogue, we would like to highlight on the opportunities, challenges and strategy required to ensure adequate representation of women at different platforms of governance in India.” Said Ms Reddy

The esteemed Panelists at the discussion included Members of Parliament Smt. K Kavitha, Telangana Rashtra Samithi,  Ms. Sushmita Dev, Indian National Congress,  Smt. Supriya Sule,  Nationalist Congress Party,  Smt. Poonam Mahajan, Bharatiya Janata Party , Shri Baijayant