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Renuka Chowdhury Stresses Importance of Bridging Gender Gap

by Medindia Content Team on February 12, 2006 at 4:31 PM
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Renuka Chowdhury Stresses Importance of Bridging Gender Gap

Newly appointed minister of state for women and child development, Ms Renuka Chowdhury is enthusiastic about her new post and said that she would be urging the government to declare the next decade as the "Girl Child" decade.

"Decrease in the population of females is a truly alarming situation. I have raised the red flag over the issue and want the government to declare a decade for the girl child." she said in an interview to IANS. "I will prove that I can do wonders in this ministry, which has been low profile so far." Chowdhury, who was the tourism minister of state until recently said that the focus would be on bridging the gender gap. She dismissed reports that she considered the departmental appointment a demotion, "I am astonished at the reports that I have been demoted. My voters think that I have been elevated. This is about something I have been long fighting for. It's a home- coming," she stressed. "This is the first time the government has identified it as an independent department.

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And do you know I have three joint secretaries and a budget that is eight times bigger than tourism." She also revealed that tackling the growing problem of malnutrition would be on her agenda as well. "By 2020, a majority of India's population would be aged under 25 and one among six people in the world would be an Indian. If we do not have a healthy population, how will we harness the potential of the young people? We need to invest in it," she said. "It's a matter of concern that Indians who man Britain's healthcare system and who constitute a majority of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) scientists do not have a proper system to keep the younger generation healthy. It is absurd! It is ridiculous."

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