SHILLONG, OCT 5: Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma flagged off the cross-country bike expedition by Yashaswini, a group of CRPF women bikers from Shillong on Thursday. The CRPF, in collaboration with the Ministry of Women and Child Development is organising this bike rally to celebrate Nari Shakti (women power) in the country.
Saluting the unparalleled bravery, determination and courage shown by the women warriors of different armed forces, Conrad Sangma said that the women warriors are second to none and that this particular event and expedition is another example of Nari Shakti.
Expressing his profound delight to be part of the significant event, the Chief Minister said, “From different parts of the country, women bikers of CRPF will be starting off their journey and ultimately converge in the statue of unity and hence it gives me great honour and pride to be part of this particular programme and I once again would like to congratulate CRPF for this wonderful programme that they have organised.”
The Chief Minister said that he had always believed that true development can only happen when “we are able to touch every life, when we are able to develop and take forward every individual, when we are able to bring in equality among genders and among communities.”
Hinting on the vision of Prime Minister of India to make the country a developed country and how these kind of initiatives establish a favourable environment to enforce equality among citizens, Sangma said, “ A true developed nation, which our honourable Prime Minister has been speaking about and have targeted that by 2047 India must be a developed nation can only happen when every community and every citizen and every part and person of our great nation move forward. And hence what we have seen today is another example of that effort to ensure that there is equality in our system.”
Sangma said that the rally is a tribute to our Nari Shakti, which is an age-old tradition of our culture and a sheer display of women strength and resilience. “Meghalaya and the cultural history of our state, people and our tribes have already been practising this for many many centuries. Meghalaya is a matrilineal society and for the information of the bikers and officials who have come from different parts of the country will be happy to know that Meghalaya tribes and the community have been working for Nari Shakti and equality since centuries.”
Sangma said that various efforts have been made to ensure that women also take part in the overall economic activity of the state. He mentioned that Meghalaya is one of the few states that has passed a resolution to reserve 50 percent posts of Secretary and Presidents of Village Employment Council for the women.
The Chief Minister also highlighted that over the past five years, the participation of women in Self Help Groups has increased from 30,000 to 4.5 lakh numbers. This underscores the government’s ongoing commitment to empowering women in the state, contributing significantly to the overall economic development.
The Chief Minister also thanked and congratulated the Prime Minister and the government for passing the historic Women Reservation Bill and said that women’s participation in walks of life is a must for their empowerment.
As part of the initiative, three teams of CRPF’s All Women Bike expedition are being flagged off from Shillong, Srinagar and Kanniyakumari and all the teams will converge at Ekta Nagar, Gujarat on 31st October, on the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. The expedition will cover a total distance of 3291 kms and in this journey, the bikers will be traversing through seven states, before they reach their culminating point at Ekta Nagar.
During the entire journey of this collaborative effort of CRPF and Ministry of Women and Child Development, all three teams from Srinagar, Shillong and Kanyakumari will interact with the target groups of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” (BBBP) like school children and college girls, women self-help groups, cadets of the NCC, children of CCIs, NYKS members, adolescent girls and boys, anganwadi workers etc. across various districts. The objective is to further boost the Women and Child Development Ministry’s “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” programme.
In addition to promoting the Force’s message of “Desh Ke Hum Hain Rakshak,” the women bikers have also incorporated the social message of “Beti Bachao Beti Padhao” into their campaign. They would be proudly displaying the BBBP logo on their uniforms and banners, thereby endorsing the cause throughout the country.
The CRPF Women Jazz Band, Stoney Haven, enthralled the audience through its performance during the flag-off programme. As CRPF rightly says, Stoney Haven is not just about display of musical talent, but it is also a celebration of women’s strength and resilience.
Paul Lyngdoh, Minister of Social Welfare Govt. of Meghalaya, Anurag Agrawal, IG, NE Sector, CRPF, the senior dignitaries of Police, Defence and State Administration also attended the flag off ceremony.