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Union Minister Smriti Irani speaks to FLO members on the Future Role of Women in India

Smriti Zubin Irani, Union Minister interacted with FICCI Ladies Organisation (FLO), Hyderabad Chapter members on the Future Role of Women in India at a function held Thursday evening at Taj Deccan, Banjara Hills in the city.

She was in conversation with Journalist and Author Sriram Karri.

Welcoming the gathering Ritu Shah, Chairperson of FLO Hyderabad said “Women are the true backbone of society, and a contribution invaluable. Empowering women should be our collective mission.”

She thanked the government for passing the historic "Women's Reservation Bill".

Speaking further Ritu said, ‘It is evident that the future of India rests significantly on the shoulders of our women, and it is crucial that we continue to foster an environment that encourages their growth and participation in every sphere’.

Highlighting one of several initiatives of FLO Hyderabad Chapter for the year Ritu Shah said it has been championing Telia Rumal Weave, a dying art/craft form of Telangana.

Your failures define your way forward. And your success keeps full stop to your efforts. So, it is better to treat success and failure equally, Smriti Irani while explaining her ups and downs journey.

Talking about the Women's Reservation bill she said it was the foresight of our people way back in 1947 that women needed a constitutional mandate to get parity. Now it is the realization of those visionaries. But unfortunately, the nation has to wait for so long, she said. It was the BJP’s commitment. And we did it in the first session of a new parliament building. It is your time has come, she told the 250-plus attendees in the hall. With the introduction of the bill, we are not taking away the rights of any men, she said.

Speaking about the visionary Prime Minister of India, she said, he could probably be such a few Prime Ministers who travelled the length and breadth of every district in the country. He did that while he held 22 years of constitutional post, and 30 years of building up the organization in the party. Narendra Modi is probably only the Politician in the country who has 50 years of political experience and discusses any issue in any district of the country, who knows in and out of it, she said.

The Prime Minister if gives a word, keeps it up. He said he would build a consensus around Ram Mandir, he did it. Not a single rupee of taxpayers money is used in doing so.

Before 2014 fifty crores Indians didn't have a bank account. Now they not only have bank accounts but collectively hold two lakh fifty thousand crores in all those accounts put together.

During the past nine years, the number of 1 crore plus income taxpayers has gone up by 48.4%. People know that if any money is paid in taxes it will be utilised well in infrastructure development of the nation, she said.

Smriti Irani ridiculed the Hunger Index done by Gallop which was based on just 3000 sample size.

Replying to a question she said, nobody has the right to treat any women second to men unless we allow them to do so. Unfortunately, we embrace the victim role, which we should not do. No one can make me feel inferior or less than men unless I allow them or give an opportunity to them to do so.

When asked about when we could see her as prime minister of India, she avoided it by asking what is the next question. Similarly, when asked about the war and what will be the impact of it on India, if it goes out of control and escalates across the globe. She said there will be a lot of ramifications on our global relations. So I leave that matter to the Prime Minister of India and External Affairs of India.

She said women are better leaders. Women who lead self-help group has just 2% NPAs(Non-performing assets) speaks volumes about their abilities, the Minister said.

The Minister was an actress before entering into politics. Which of these two roles she likes the most? She replied that she enjoys being herself.

When asked how she would be remembered and what work she is known for, she listed out many things. One among them was being back in the office on the third day of delivering a baby. That is my commitment to my work. And there are many such things to speak she said.

Replying to another question that technology is a double-edged weapon and on one side it makes a huge impact on the world on the other side, children are exposed to so much unwanted content. The Minister said we have to teach our children the responsible usage of technology, how they look up to women etc


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