Empowering Women in India's Panchayati Raj: A Path to Inclusive Governance

Through LifeBahn Lens

India's Permanent Representative to the UN, Ruchira Kamboj, recently highlighted the significant strides made in women's leadership within India's Panchayati Raj system during a side event at #CPD57. The event, titled "Localising the SDGs: Women in Local Governance in India Leads the Way," underscored the transformative impact of women's empowerment at the grassroots level.


Ms Kamboj celebrated India's unique rural governance system, the Panchayati Raj, as a beacon of decentralized power. This system, exemplified by direct democracy through the Gram Sabha, fosters inclusive decision-making, setting it apart from conventional municipal governance models globally.

India's commitment to gender equality was highlighted through the 1992 constitutional amendment mandating one-third of elected roles in local governance for women. Today, 21 states have achieved 50% women's representation among over 3.1 million elected representatives, reflecting a societal shift towards recognizing and valuing women's contributions.

The alignment of local planning with sustainable development goals within the Panchayati Raj system has been transformative, ensuring women's needs and priorities are addressed. Women leaders in Panchayati Raj institutions have played a pivotal role in enhancing education, healthcare, sanitation, and livelihoods, driving positive change at the grassroots level.

Despite challenges, including the need for supportive legal frameworks and capacity building, India's experience offers valuable lessons in advancing women's leadership. Ms Kamboj emphasized the importance of creating an enabling environment for women to thrive in governance roles, echoing Mahatma Gandhi's words on the strength of women.

The blog encapsulates India's progress in women's leadership within the Panchayati Raj system, aligning with Lifebahn's vision of collaboration leading to broader success and showcasing the transformative power of inclusive governance.

It is a great example of the LifeBahn philosophy as it applies to our daily lives and highlights the real issue in our society of gender discrimination.

While competition is a good way to succeed for a FEW,
                  Collaboration is a BETTER way to succeed for MANY.

Once again - the root of all these issues is conflict. Conflict between men and women. It should also reaffirm that divisiveness is toxic to all societies.

There is no reason why men and women should not be treated fairly while recognizing their obvious biological differences. A TED talk titled ‘Men and Women the Binary of Humanity”  by the Life Bahn Founder Joseph Khan highlights this point further.