The World Development Report of the World Bank says that as compared to $1 earned by a man, a woman in India gets only 64 cents. Overall, the report showed that despite some significant improvement in their quality of lives, women are still behind men in claiming their rights
The 2012 instalment of the Grant Thornton’s International Business Report (IBR) shows that the proportion of women holding senior management roles in India is steadily increasing, with 14% of the positions being held by women this year compared to 9% last year. However, the global average is at 21%, barely higher than the 2004 level.
India is way ahead of the global average in terms of flexible working conditions for women. The report says 66% of Indian businesses offer flexible working conditions (flexible hours, alternative locations, etc.) to female employees, against the global average of 52%.
“Human resource (HR) seems to be the favourite among Indian women, with 23% holding senior positions in this space, followed by 16% in financial positions and 10% in sales,” says that IBR. Nidhi Maheshwari, director, marketing communications, said, “A consistent rise though measured, in the number of women in the boardrooms of Indian companies is a positive sign.”
On the occasion of World Women’s Day on 8th March, Michelle Bachelet, former president of Chile and executive director of UN Women said that nearly 400 chief executives worldwide have publicly declared their commitment to implementing the Women’s Empowerment Principles (WEPs) over the last two years. The corporate support has doubled since last year.
According to the World Bank, Women now represent more than 40% of the global labour force, 43% of the agricultural workforce, and more than half of the world’s university students. But the World Development Report of the World Bank shows that female disadvantage within countries is more marked at low incomes; India being no exception. It also says that between 1998 and 2008, there were almost 856,000 missing women in India—second only to China.
The economic disparity is also pronounced. The report says that as compared to $1 earned by a man, a woman in India gets only 64 cents. Overall, the report showed that despite some significant improvement in their quality of lives, women are still behind men in claiming their rights.
In many parts of the world, it has been noted that the last year has not been fair to the fairer sex even at the higher levels. On 2nd March, a study by Inter-Parliamentary Union revealed that there are fewer women parliamentarians in the Middle-Eastern region post the Arab Spring. According to its ‘Women in Parliament’ study, despite the revolutions that toppled regimes, the Arab region was the only area in the world without a parliament of at least 30% women.
The most serious setback has been noticed in Egypt, where the percentage of women parliamentarians has fallen from 12% to 2%. However, Tunisia and the newborn South Sudan have been working towards having quotas for women in parliament.
According to the report, countries like Belize, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the Solomon Islands have no women representatives.
Ms Bachelet said that female heads of state and heads of government around the world are doubling since 2005 to 17, while the number of women ministers edged up by 2.5 points to 16.7%. She said that women find it difficult to contest elections because they have fewer resources at their disposal and face antagonism from political rivals.
She said, “Amidst all the challenges and opportunities in our world today, one fact is unassailable; countries and companies with higher gender equality enjoy higher levels of growth and performance.”
Indian Pilots Guild (IPG), which represents the pilots of pre-merger Air India, warned that they would not undertake flying duties from April one if their dues were not cleared
New Delhi: Protesting delayed payment of salaries and allowances, a section of pilots from Air India on Wednesday warned they would not undertake flying duties from April one if their dues were not cleared by then, reports PTI.
The Indian Pilots Guild (IPG), which represents the pilots of pre-merger Air India, has shot off letters to Civil Aviation Minister Ajit Singh, Labour Minister Mallikarjun Kharge and others saying that a large number of its members had written to it that "financial distress" could "adversely affect" their ability to safely discharge their duties and endanger lives.
Hence, its members "will be unable to operate flights on and after April 1, 2012, unless the management clears all the dues", IPG President Jeetendra Awhad said in the letter sent also to Air India CMD, Civil Aviation Secretary and Director General Civil Aviation.
Subtly seeking to distance itself from the proposed agitation, he said "in the interim, we will do our utmost to convince our members to exercise calm and restraint. However, given the financial distress facing them, we are unable to provide any assurances to that effect".
Mr Awhad sought the "urgent intervention" of the two Ministers and others in resolving the issue at the earliest.
The dues comprise basic salaries from December last year till February, Layover Allowance from December to March and Flying Allowance from November to February, the IPG said, adding "this amounts to withholding approximately more than a quarter of the yearly emoluments", causing "tremendous hardship" to its members.
This is the second time this year that Air India pilots are showing signs of unrest over delays in salary payments.
In January, pilots owing allegiance to the Indian Commercial Pilot's Association of erstwhile Indian Airlines pilots had gone on a two-day 'no-pay-no-work' agitation, leading to severe flight disruptions. They returned to work after assurances that their dues would be cleared by March. They had gone on strike last year as well on the same issues.
There was no immediate official comment on the matter from the government or Air India.
Maintaining that several pilots came from "humble background and modest means", the IPG said these members had written to it that "non-payment of dues for an extended time period has caused them significant financial hardship and psychological stress."
They have also "written to us that they are undergoing severe psychological stress as financial institutions and banks are hounding them in order to repay their loans" and they and their families have "suffered humiliation" for loan defaults.
"You will certainly appreciate that in order to ensure the safety of passengers and the crew, a pilot is required to maintain the highest level of alertness and concentration.
"Clearly under the current situation, it is very likely that the safety of Air India's flight operations may be compromised, potentially endangering the lives of passengers," the IPG President said.
"While we appreciate the financial distress facing the company, however, unlike Air India which can turn to the central government for funds, employees have no such option," he said.
Whether the industries vying for mining lease were contributing for the country should be taken into consideration before granting mining lease, the Tata Steel MD feels
Jamshedpur: Tata Steel's Managing Director HM Nerurkar on Wednesday said there should be change in allotment of mines policy and mine lease should be granted first to industries engaged in value addition, reports PTI.
"From the top of my voice, I have been demanding for drastic change in the allotment of mines and the prevailing auction of mine blocks (coal blocks) exist nowhere in the world except India," Mr Nerurkar told newsmen in reply to a question.
Whether the industries vying for mining lease were contributing for the country should be taken into consideration before granting mining lease, he suggested.
He said industries engaged in value addition downstream and creating jobs should get mining lease first.
Nobody was bothered about the mining sector, especially iron-ore, till early 2000, but spurt in activities was witnessed with the booming of the industrial sector after 2003-04, he said.
He suggested that small players in the mining sector should form co-operatives for smooth functioning of the sector.
Referring the private steel major's proposed steel plant in Karnataka, he said negotiations with the Karnataka government were in the final stages. "But we are not yet sure about the nature of land to be allotted to us."