Maneka Gandhi, the wife of late Sanjiv Gandhi or daughter-in-law of Indira Gandhi, is symbolic of a lotus. Like the lotus floats afresh and vividly, despite being amidst the slimy mud, Maneka too is this lotus of the mucked-up Gandhi dynasty (Congress).
Maneka is an embodiment of humanness and kindness, which is rare these days. Her keenness and devotion towards animals and environment was evident during her adulthood only. It was she who took a first stand to be the voice of animals in parliament and ushered in the ministerial post for animal welfare, becoming the first animal welfare minister across the world.
Since the ministerial post got in her hands, she has been a mother like figure to the animal kingdom. She founded People for Animals (PFA) in 1992. She is a prestigious member of the Worldwide Fund For Nature (WWF) and a trustee of Sanjay Gandhi Animal Care Shelter and Hospital. She doted on animals like their parents and hence was endowed with several notable awards, Lord Erskine Award from the RSPXA, 1992, Prani Mitra Award, 1995, Venu Menon Animal Allies Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award, 1999 and many such-likes.
After 2014, Lok Sabha polls, she was anointed as Indian Union Cabinet Minister for Women & Child Development in the Government of PM Narendra Modi. She since then has been fostering women’s development and empowerment through her women-concerned endeavours. Like, she introduced an award to appreciate the contribution of women at the grass-root level towards women’s issues and empowerment, to be conferred to a woman from each district on 8th March, International Women’s Day, every year. Her viewpoint in support of this award was to encourage women’s aspirations towards their empowerment. The award was worth a cash prize of 25,000 INR.
I’m sure Maneka Gandhi will take this society to a considerably different level. Women empowerment, under her will shoot up in leaps and bounds. The status women in our community have been fighting for will be established soon under her ministry.
By Prerna Daga