Space For Rent

Space For Rent
Tuesday, March 3, 2015, Falgun 19, 1421 BS, Jamadi ul Awwal 11, 1436 Hijr

Global actions on women's rights stressed
Published : Tuesday, 3 March, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM,  View Count : 17

Banani Mallick
The year 2015 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Fourth World Conference on Women and the landmark Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action with defining of the post- 2015 development agenda.
Beijing Declaration of Platform for Action has been considered the most comprehensive blueprint on advancing women's rights.
Experts from different background of national and international area expect that this conference will generate momentum and urgency for global actions on women's rights and gender equality.
On the eve of this conference, this correspondent talked to experts about the possible issues that could be prioritized in the conference in New York beginning from March 9 to 20 in connection with Bangladesh's agenda.
Executive Director of the Steps towards Development Ranjan Karmakar noted that among so many important issues, women's political empowerment and making provision for one-third seats in Parliament through direct election could be raised as the most pressing matters.
Besides fair and equal wages for men and women, early marriage and the marriage age of the girl, climate change and gender will also be discussed.
He said that through the conference the participants would try to review the 20-year progress, achievement, challenges and setting up of development agenda in the post- 2015 and beyond.   
A political declaration will be adopted by the Commission at a session of the opening day.
Referring to some reservations of the Bangladesh government to implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), Khushi Kabir, Coordinator of Nijera Kori, said there cannot be half approval to any universal law on the grounds of any particular religion.
Such reservations among others include the issue of equal rights of men and women while getting married and divorced.
Laying emphasis on the rights and recognition of the ethnic community both in the Chittagong Hill Tracts (CHT) and plain- land she said that violence on ethnic community increased every year due lack of recognition and this issue should be raised in the conference.
"The ethnic community's rights are still ignored although they are the citizens of Bangladesh," she said.
Suggesting reforms in the government policies on the Khas land (state land) she said that the existing policy of distribution of Khas land are not women- friendly, rather these are discriminatory.
"During distribution of Khas land, half should be given to husband and half should be given to wife. The existing law only has the provision for distribution to husband. And when wife gets divorced, simply she is denied," she said.
Tariqul Islam, Secretary of Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, said that plenty of issues will be discussed but mainly the government would emphasize women empowerment, prevention of child marriage and taking measures to stop drop- out of children from the primary school level.
"Advancing Gender Equality and Empowerment of Women and Girls will be focused," he said.
About political and economic progress he said that some progress had been made, but not enough.

Editor : Iqbal Sobhan Chowdhury
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