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Foro Global sobre Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición • Foro FSN

Re: Transforming gender relations in agriculture through women’s empowerment: benefits, challenges and trade-offs for improving nutrition outcomes

Nitya Rao
Nitya RaoSchool of International Development and LANSAIndia

It seems important to advocate for a recognition of women's contributions to agriculture, in fact, for women as farmers, in all of South Asia, including Bangladesh. This really seems like a first step to ensure that women then have equal access to benefits and services in their own right. Such policy change will not happen without our collective advocacy. In India, a few years ago, the Women Farmers' Entitlement Bill was introduced by Professor M.S Swaminathan as a private member's bill in Parliament. This was however not taken up. There is now a network of over 70 women farmers' organisations across the country, called Makaam, which is in the process of drafting a revised bill, with support from UN Women and the National Commission for Women. Legal recognition will at least provide a basis for claiming these rights. Given women's central role in agriculture, this needs to be prioritised.