National Policy for Women, 2016

For the purpose of expressing a vision for the empowerment of women, the Ministry of Women and Child Development (MWCD) created a draft National Policy for Women in 2016. Prior to that, the National Policy for the Empowerment of Women (NPEW) was created in 2001, which is over 15 years ago.

What is National Policy for Women?

The National Policy for Women, 2016, serves as a general policy framework that directs different sectors to release more specialized, sector-specific policy documents.

  • The goal of this strategy is to create a society where women may realize their full potential, engage in all aspects of life as equal partners, and have an impact on social change.

Additionally, the goal is to design an efficient framework that will facilitate the process of creating policies, programs, and practices that will guarantee equal rights and opportunities for women in the home, community, business, and in government.

Need of National Policy for Women

Given the long-term nature of issues affecting women in India, it is necessary to strengthen processes that support the holistic development of women by putting an emphasis on a coordinated approach for carrying out the policies of the relevant ministries and departments and by fostering an environment that is supportive of social change.

Women in India still face issues like feminization of poverty, inadequate investment in social sectors, rising violence against women, and stereotypical representation of women in society, despite the particular efforts the state has made for their welfare.

Since the last National Policy for the Empowerment of Women in India was created in 2001, the idea of women's empowerment has evolved. Instead of only being welfare receivers, it is now necessary to involve them in the development process, providing welfare with a heavy dose of rights. This policy's draft aims to address this change. In India, it will determine how the government acts toward women for the next 15 to 20 years.

Key Features of NPW

There are some key features of this policy-

  • The Pam Rajput Committee report, which the MWCD established in 2012 and which delivered its recommendations in 2016 along with a suggested national policy for women and an action plan to reduce violence against women, served as the basis for the policy in large part.

  • Prenatal and maternal mortality will continue to be a top concern, with an emphasis on a coordinated referral transport system for safe deliveries and the provision of emergency obstetric treatment in challenging, remote, and isolated locations.

  • In order to change the focus of family planning activities from female sterilisation to male sterilisation, it attempts to develop "a gender transformative health strategy".

  • It places a high priority on improving the nutrition of women of all ages and strengthening geriatric services to address the 8.4% of the population that are women over 60.

Implementation of this policy

  • At the national, state, and local government levels, in PSUs, corporations, companies, trade unions, NGOs, and community-based groups, it will be necessary to develop specific, attainable, and effective implementation plans.

  • At the national, state, and municipal levels, interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral gender institutional architecture will be enhanced and streamlined to uphold women's rights and advance gender equality.

  • The Ministry of Women and Child Development will serve as a focal point at the national level for efforts to realize constitutional and international obligations to social justice and gender equality.


Although the strategy aspires to empower women and attempts to take the interests of women into account, it remains silent on the subject of marital rape. In addition to more conventional programs for women's empowerment, the policy asserts that it acknowledges the complexities in gender roles brought about by "the new millennium and the dynamics of a quickly changing global and national scene."

However, passing laws on their own is insufficient. It is necessary to bring about changes in how society views women as well as in the behavior of men and boys and the institutions of the family and women's groups. Only after that will we be able to move on with giving women the same protections and rights as men.


Q1. What are the women policies in India?

Ans. Schemes that were introduced under the Beti Bachao Beti Padhao Scheme includes Ladli scheme, Kanyashree Prakalpa Yojana, Sukanya Samridhi Yojana, Balika Samridhi Yojana, Ladli Laxmi Yojana, Dhanalakshmi scheme and many more.

Q2. What are the objectives of women policy?

Ans. The policy seeks to promote women's empowerment, growth, and development. alleging discrimination against women and children as well as all forms of maltreatment. Empowering women is essential for increasing their participation in decision-making, which is essential for socioeconomic development.

Q3. What are the national policies for women empowerment?

Ans. The National Policy on the Empowerment of Women, which was adopted in 2001, states that "All forms of violence against women, physical and mental, whether at the domestic or societal levels, including those arising from customs, traditions, or accepted practices, shall be dealt with effectively with a view to eliminating its incidence."

Updated on: 17-Feb-2023

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