Prominent women’s organisations, including the National Federation of Indian Women and the All India Democratic Women’s Association, have criticised the National Commission for Women (NCW) for “failing to recognise” their “crucial role” in shaping the “discourse on women and law” by not inviting them to its online consultation on the review of criminal law.
In a letter dated January 18 (Tuesday) and addressed to NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma, the organisations have expressed their displeasure at their exclusion from the meeting and demanded that the commission hold wider consultation with all the stakeholders.
“We have just learned about a meeting called by the National Commission for Women (NCW) tomorrow for an online consultation on the review of criminal law. The NCW has not invited women’s organisations and feminist lawyers who have contributed so much to the discourse on women and law,” the signatories, which also included the All India Progressive Women’s Association and Pragatisheel Mahila Sanghatan, wrote.
Stressing the role of women’s organisations in fighting “for many laws and legal reforms”, the organisations further wrote: “The Women’s Commission itself was created through the persistent demand by the women’s movement and several women’s organisations.”
Criticising the NCW for failing to “recognise the crucial role of the national women organisations and movements” and for “refusing to involve them in the discussion on such important matters”, the signatories demanded that the commission should “hold wider consultation with all the stakeholders”.