The Department of Women and Child Development, Government of India, came into working as a separate Ministry with effect from 30th January 2006, earlier since 1985 it was a Department under the Ministry of Human Resources Development.
The Ministry was comprised of the prime intention of addressing gaps in State action for women and children for promoting inter-Ministerial and inter-sectoral convergence to create gender equitable and child-centered legislation, policies, and programmes.
Encourage women living with dignity and contributing as equal partners in development in an environment free from violence and discrimination. And, well-nurtured children with total opportunities for growth and development in a safe and protective environment.
Encouraging social and economic empowerment of women through cross-cutting policies and programmes, mainstreaming gender concerns, creating awareness about their rights and facilitating institutional and legislative support for enabling them to realize their human rights and develop to their full potential.2. A promising development, care and protection of children through cross-cutting policies and programmes, spreading awareness about their rights and facilitating access to learning, nutrition, institutional and legislative support for enabling them to grow and develop to their full potential.
The broad necessity of the Ministry is to have the holistic development of Women and Children. As the main Ministry for the advancement of women and children, the Ministry formulates plans, policies, and programmes; enacts/ amends legislation, guides and coordinates the efforts of both governmental and non-governmental organizations working in the field of Women and Child Development. Besides, playing its major role, the Ministry implements certain innovative programmes for women and children. These programmes envelop welfare and support services, training for employment and income generation, awareness generation and gender sensitization. These projects play a supplementary and complementary role to the other general developmental programmes in the sectors of health, education, rural development etc. All these efforts are guided to ensure that women are empowered both economically and socially and thus become equal partners in national development along with men.
For the holistic growth of the child, the Ministry has been implementing the world’s largest and most unique and outreach programme of Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) granting a package of services comprising supplementary nutrition, immunization, health check-up, and referral services, pre-school non-formal education. There are effective coordination and monitoring of the various sectoral project. Most of the programmes of the Ministry are run through non-governmental organizations. Efforts are made to have more effective involvement of NGOs. The major policy initiatives were undertaken by the Ministry in the recent past cover universalization of ICDS and Kishori Shakti Yojana, launching a nutrition programme for adolescent girls, the establishment of the Commission for the protection of Child Rights and enactment of Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act.
Subjects Allocated to the Ministry
- Welfare of the family.
- Women and Child Welfare and Coordination of activities of other Ministries and Organisation in connection with this subject.
- References from the United Nations Organizations relating to traffic in Women and Children
- National Nutrition Policy, National Plan of Action for Nutrition and National Nutrition Mission.
- Charitable and religious endowments pertaining to subjects allocated to this Department
- Promotion and development of voluntary effort on the subjects allocated to this Department
- Women’s Empowerment and Gender Equity.
- National Commission for Women.
- Rashtriya Mahila Kosh (RMK)
- The Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2000 (56 of 2000).
- Probation of Juvenile Offenders.
- Issues relating to adoption, Central Adoption Resource Agency and Child Help Line (Childline)
- The Children Act, 1960 (60 of 1960)
- The Child Marriage – Restraint Act, 1929 (19 of 1929)