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Note From the Director's Desk
Dr. Ranjana Kumari 
 
Time to give seats to women to contest for Parliament
Let me take a moment to thank you for your support of our work at the Centre for Social Research.  CSR works with you and for you to fight for important, impactful changes for women in India. 
As we approach the general election, it's a perfect time to speak about the impact of women's leadership and why CSR is so dedicated to seeing progress within our             institutions of governance.  In Rajasthan, we've seen women elected PRI members leading development of key water infrastructure for their communities, accessing government grants, and educating their constituents about water conservation technologies.  These women are busting the myth that women under the PRI reservation are proxies for men.  In fact, we see over and over how women leaders invest in their communities and work hard to make life better for the people they serve.  
But why is this strength limited only to the village level?  It's been over a decade, and still the Women's Reservation Bill is not passed.  We applaud Mamata Bannerjee in West Bengal for committing 42% tickets for women and Naveen Patnaik in Odisha for reserving 33% for women, but what of the rest of our major parties? BJP has committed only 11.5% of tickets for women.  This is the time to open the doors for women's leadership at higher levels so that the entire nation can benefit from the value that women bring to governance.
I appeal to you through this Call to action:  sign the petition, follow our campaign, and join your voice in holding parties and our government accountable to promote women's leadership.
At CSR we are building women's skills, economic capacity, and leadership because we see firsthand the power of women to change the world.  From our work on Beti Bachao Beti Padhao in Haryana to stop sex selection, to our new skill training program for women security guards, to our digital safety training programs, CSR is building women's capacity to create a brighter, safer world for us all. 
Please enjoy this update on our programming and join us in calling for women's political representation in parliament.
Beti Bachao Beti Padhao - Work in Gender Critical Districts Recogized  SDG.5
On 24th January 2019, the CSR team members were invited to participate in the “National Girl Child Day” celebration organized by the Ministry of Women & Child Development (MWCD) at the Pravasi Bharatiya Kendra, New Delhi with the presence of the Hon. Union Minister of WCD, Mrs. Menaka Sanjay Gandhi and Hon. State Minister of WCD, Mrs. Kavita Jain. It is noteworthy to mention here that on this occasion, two out of five of our gender critical districts where CSR works on BBBP won awards; District of Jhajjar received an awarded in the category of 'Enabling Girl Child Education' and district of Kurukshetra won in the category of 'Enforcement of Pre Conception and Pre Natal Diagnostic Techniques Act'. In the month of January, the team also met the Secretary General at the Indian Medical Association Dr. R.V. Asokan and PC/PNDT Officer Dr. A.M. Pillai for effective monitoring and implementation of the PC/PNDT Act.

During this quarter, the team established 2 Community Watch Groups (CWGs) in the low sex ratio villages of Bazidpur and Rawalon villages in Ambala District. At the same time, the team also conducted Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) training at the Panchayat Bhawan in Kurukshetra District for the representatives of 20 low sex ratio villages of the district. The panelist during the PRI training included the Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Deputy Civil Surgeon, District Program Officer (DPO) and District Child Protection Officer (DCPO). Towards the end of this quarter, a day before International Women's Day, the team organized a Youth Mobilization Event at the NorthCap University, Gurugram. On this day, Dr. Ranjana Kumari, Director, Centre for Social Research (CSR) along with the Vice Chancellor Shri H.B. Raghavendra and Pro-Chancellor Dr. Prem Vrat of the university addressed the students on the changing role of women
Women's Security Guard Training Program SDG.4,5
After the successful completion of the first batch for the WSG training program, the team commenced the training for the second batch from last week of December 2018 and     consecutively the third batch from 1st February 2019. The certification ceremony for the second batch took place on 18th February 2019.
The trainees underwent an all-rounded training education with theoretical, physical and soft skill training. As a gender organization, we also conducted Gender sensitization training for the trainees, trainer and other support staff. The trainees also were demonstrated the dos and don'ts for an interview as well. 
“Safer Internet Day- together for a better internet” on 5th February 2019; the trainees shared their experience with the internet and online world and shared their views on how the internet could be made safer for every woman to use. They were excited to get their voices heard on CSR’s social media handles.
 Currently, we are waiting for the examination results for the batch-3 trainees; post which we will be organizing a certification ceremony. Nevertheless, all the 3 batches have already received job opportunities with renowned Security Agencies in the NCR region. Finally, during the last week of March we began the fourth batch of the training program.
Women’s Reservation Bill Campaign 2019 : 
Historic launch of the
WOMANIFESTO 
 SDG.5 
WRB division of CSR spearheaded the national level process of preparation of WOMANIFESTO. The WOMANIFESTO is a document that consists of women's 11 points demands meant to be included in the government's policy formulation. Considering the forthcoming general elections 2019, with intent to provide our National Alliance's collective demands to political parties and for their consideration while preparing their respective election manifestoes, in the month of January 2019, content and design of WOMANIFESTO was finalized and subsequently distributed to political parties, Members of Parliament, policy makers, representatives of NGOs and Alliance Partners .

National Alliance members visited Rajya Sabha of Parliament and distributed copies of WOMANIFESTO to MPs like Ms Jaya Bachchan, Ms Roopa Ganguli, Mr Thiruchi Siva, Ms Jharna Das among others.
We are happy to note that many of the political parties referred our WOMANIFESTO while preparing their respective party's election manifesto 2019,and many of our demands like 33% reservation of women in Parliament/State Legislative Assemblies , 33% reservation of jobs for women , new jobs creation for women etc have been retained by them.
All the Hon'ble MPs assured they will consider women's collective demands while preparing their party's election manifestoes .National Alliance members also visited Rajya Sabha MP and member of Manifesto Committee of DMK party, Ms Kanimozhi and provided her copies of WOMANIFESTO, requesting her to keep women's demands in the soon to be released DMK's election manifesto
Round table on 15.02.2019
National Alliance members met on 15.02.2019 at the office of CSR to design new strategies of the Alliance for the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections 2019. Among other strategies, it was agreed that the Alliance will support and campaign for political parties that will provide subsequently fare percentage of tickets to women.
Press Conference 06.03.2019

CSR, in collaboration with National Alliance organized a press conference on 06.03.2019 and made a unified demand from political parties to give at least 33% tickets to female candidates.
Signature campaign underway
For last two consecutive years WRB division of CSR is spearheading the signature campaign throughout India. Through this campaign, signatures in favor of WRB are being sought from people. Till now we have already received more than 33 thousand signatures from Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Bihar, Haryana, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Delhi,  Jharkhand, Jammu and Kashmir and other states . This year the process to procure more than 50 thousand signatures is underway.
WRB Social Media Campaign
CSR is undertaking, for the passage of Women's Reservation Bill, a vigorously active social media campaign from all our handles:
Twitter -  @Time33Percent  @CSR_India
Facebook - @Timefor33Percent  , @csrindia.org/
Through these two handles we have been 
Continuous postings keeping in consideration latest developments nationwide/ worldwide.
We are involving a  larger audience in our social media campaign through #Tweechat, using the hashtags  #WRB, #Election2019, #WomenDecide, #WomensReservationBill #TimeFor33%.
Tweetchats are scheduled for 26th April and 3rd May.
We request and suggest our audience and different stakeholders to actively participate in the campaign to add to the collective voice as well .
 
Women Water Conservation Leaders experience the ‘Bureaucratic Bottleneck’
 SDG. 6,13  
 
After initial site visit done by the project team, it obtained required documents such as NOC from gram panchayat, revenue map, actual site topography survey, watershed map of Umaren block, Umaren block map, land use patterns data and average rainfall data since past 15-20 years. The SHG women, our key beneficiary group in Kalikhol, Alwar passed a resolution and submitted an application demonstrating their willingness to undertake restoration and management work. The Kalikhol Gram Panchayat also submitted a NoC as well as a resolution from the Sarpanch, Mrs. Laliram. The Kali-Khol Gram Panchayat also submitted a NoC as well as a resolution from the Sarpanch, Mrs. Laliram. Even the Deputy Sarpanch issued us an NOC. Based on this, the site-work officially began on 26th January 2019 in Kalikhol where JCB construction tractors were outsourced and even men and women from the village community contributed in the form of manual labour. However, there are strong bureaucratic blockages being faced by the project team as the Forest Department, on the fourth day of work, intervened and asked for the construction work to stop because, according to them, the construction land for pond comes is deemed as forest land. At the time, the village and project site supervisors including our local partner KRAPAVIS and technical consultant tried to appease the Forest Department officials by furbishing maps and empirical records which genuinely show that the site area is in fact part of revenue land. The subsequent letter from Revenue Department to proceed with the construction was also demonstrated. However, the Forest Department were not satisfied and further threatened for the site work to be stopped on an urgent basis, thus causing a long hindrance to the delivery of this project. 
The local team in Alwar, comprising of KRAPAVIS, then approached the higher officials in the Sariska Forest Department and had several meetings with DFO, APCCF and CCF on separate occasions to obtain their individual NoC. Even though the site land is coherently part of the revenue department (and all necessary official documents have been obtained from them), the team sought to obtaining certificates from the forest department. The DFO from Sariska Forest Department further wrote to the project team to present them with the following documents, which was fulfilled by the team's end in due time: 
·    Traced maps provided by Revenue Patwari (please see annexure 5 )
·     Jamabandi (please see annexure 6) 
·    Village Revenue Map (please see annexure 7) 
·    Watershed block Umren (please see annexure 8)
·    Topo sheet (please see Annexure 9)
Even after having provided the requested documents to the forest department, the department ultimately relied on an inaccurate and false report prepared by a junior sub-ordinate. Therefore, on 15th March, 2019, the team met with higher officials in the Sariska Forest Department, who told us that they can't go against the findings of the lower staff, thus concluding that they are heavily dependent on lower staff reporting/feeding. Therefore, the initially proposed construction of johad in Kalikhol has faced significant overhaul, and it's favourable to think of alternatives which can be of benefit to the SHG women.
On 19th March, 2019, CSR team met with its local partners in Alwar to discuss the way forward. During this meeting, KRAPAVIS team showed us original documents and the circulars and reports issued by the forest department. The team reached a consensus that since Sariska forest cover is a sensitive issue, and the number of RTIs been filed by villagers on the issue of dense forest cover, the forest department's apprehension can be accounted to past grounds.
Therefore, the team decided that:
1.) It would mobilize all the women actively involved in this project will talk to the forest officials so they themselves are in a strong position to vouch for the benefits of this project, and disprove any negative consequences that may be associated with it. 
2.) Based on initial site visits, the team will work towards maintenance of dams in the village, and ensuring its beautification. 
3.) The women had initially also expressed interest in medhbandhi activities, and the project team will now immediately focus on incorporating this as part of the project goals
4.) Based on remaining budget, it will venture into solar light provision (individual or community-based). Additionally, the team will first gain an understanding of the need for this requirement, and proceed accordingly. 
The team is currently involved in gaining new perspectives about the water-related needs of the community, and mobilizing the remaining funds in an effective way which is useful for the community in the longer run. 
#SocialSurfing - Social Media for Social Change  
In partnership with Facebook India since the year 2015, Social Surfing has been developing safe and sensitive online environment by empowering the users. Through interactive workshops, Social Surfing shares knowledge with the most proactive user base of the country - the youth. 
From the years 2015-2017, the Social Surfing team conducted 106 workshops in 42 cities across India, with an estimated outreach of over 10000. We added another 273 workshops in the year 2018 that continued through the first quarter of the year 2019. In the second quarter of 2019, Social Surfing shall reach the landmark figure of 400 workshops that we have undertaken since the year 2015. 
The college youth with whom we interact during the Social Surfing workshops continue their interaction with us through our Social Surfing Facebook page by commenting / liking the posts and interacting with the Social Surfing team through Direct Messages. The college students enjoy workshop activities that reinforce the importance of sensitive communication skills that encourage healthy exercise of freedom of speech. We look forward to increased interaction with college youth in the coming quarters of the year 2019.
Gender Training Institute - Creating Safe Public Spaces for Women  SDG.5 
The Gender Training Institute (GTI) of Centre for Social Research has over 18 years of experience in making organizations and community, gender sensitive and gender inclusive. In an effort to mainstream gender in all aspects of development, GTI conducts long term training programs in parallel with stand-alone capacity building trainings, awareness generation programs, and continuous development of new training materials. Owing to its long term existence, GTI has developed a sustained dialogue with many of its long-term stakeholders with whom trainings are also conducted upon request. 
Since the year 1997, GTI has undertaken gender sensitization trainings for law enforcement agencies. Since the year 2015, the initiatives proliferated into states other than Delhi. 
In the first quarter of the year 2019, GTI completed gender sensitization trainings for police officials in the cities of Bhopal, Gwalior and Jodhpur. The theme of urban safety of women and public place violence were central to the discourse. The 2 day training in each city was led by Ms. Abha Singhal Joshi who is a High Court Lawyer in Delhi and has extensively worked on gender sensitive law enforcement. The gender sensitization trainings were interactive in nature and encouraged dialogue around women’s mobility, their independence and promoted a rights’ based approach to public places, thus challenging the inherent patriarchal norms that are at the core of gender based violence
Hand-holding of Women in Crisis
  SDG.5
The Crisis Intervention Centres (CICs) in Delhi help individuals and families who experience or witness violence in homes or elsewhere. CSR provides free, confidential support services such as counselling / mediation / legal referrals and emergency assistance. 
In the first quarter of 2019, Vasant Kunj CIC engaged with 17 cases of domestic violence. The Vasant Kunj team also worked to promote Prevention of Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostics Technique (PCPNDT) and undertook an interactive discourse with the Special Unit of Police for Women and Children. The CIC team mobilized women and girls to undergo skill training of security guards so that they can earn livelihood and become financially independent. The CIC in Uttam Nagar also echoed the same mobilization drive in their area. They also undertook an awareness campaign  to educate women on the Domestic Violence Act-2005 and reached out to the total of 644 women during which a total of 10 Domestic Violence cases were registered.  Several follow-ups were also done on 9 previously registered domestic violence cases as well. Our Assistant counselor, Rakhi Sharma attended PCPNDT DAC meeting on 14th and 24th January 2019 in order to build capacities to professionally handle court cases of Domestic Violence and liaison between the Crimes against Women Cell and the DV victims.
International Women's Day Celebrations
Gender inequalities, and their social causes, impact India's sex ratio, women's health over their lifetimes, their educational attainment, and economic conditions. Gender inequality in India is a multifaceted issue that concerns men and women. On the occasion of International Women's Day, 8th March 2019, we hosted an event at Miranda House, University of Delhi. The students were invited to relate their “Vision of a Future Gender-Equal India”.

With great joy students reproduced outstanding sketches, drawings, poems, songs, essays, photographs and much more. They were presented with certificates of appreciation by CSR.
63rd Commission on the Status of Women – “Access is Empowerment”   
On 12th March 2019, CSR hosted a parallel event at the 63rd Commission on the status of Women organized by UN Women. CSR proudly showcased it's film “Access is Empowerment” .It was received with tremendous appreciation. The film lead to an extremely engaging discussion by the international community-  United  States of America, Taiwan, Korea, Iran, Pakistan, Nigeria, Canada, India, South America and representatives of the African subcontinent among many others.
“It is a powerful story of courage and resilience.”- Director Of UN Women who was there to release the film.
"GUMPTION : CSR's Film on - 'Access Is Empowerment'
Gumption celebrates the triumph over problems of four brave women who struggled through poverty, deprivation and domestic violence. Centre for Social Research (CSR) supported Salma to help her overcome an abusive marriage. Salma further armed herself with knowledge of internet and today she not only sells footwear online, but also learns to make trendy ones through YouTube tutorials.
Pallavi availed the training provided by CSR to become a trained security guard in order to financially contribute to her family and give better life to her children. Pallavi’s husband died of a neurological condition, leaving her dependent on his family for sustenance. She felt empowered through her training at CSR to not only overcome financial problems but also demand the rights for her children, from her husband’s family. 
Savita is a strong ally of CSR in ensuring mitigation of domestic violence in her neighborhood. Savita is a tailor by profession and imparts the skill to young girls. In return, the young girls use internet to access apparel tutorials to upgrade Savita’s tailoring skills. 
Krishna started out to earn a livelihood at the age of 7 years as a domestic maid servant. At the age of 14 years, she was married off. When her life hit a difficult patch with a premature and ill new born baby, a paralytic husband and no income; she was encouraged by CSR to start working as a beautician and earn money for her family. Krishna not only got her professional skills updated but is also raising a daughter to be a fine, educated woman who helps Krishna learn new techniques over internet.

              
Centre for Social Research
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