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‘Women must fight discrimination unitedly'

Special Correspondent

— Photo: Mohd. Yousuf

Pakistan's theatre artist and political activist Madeeha Gauhar and journalist Kalpana Sharma at a function organised in connection with the ensuing International Women's Day, in Hyderabad on Saturday.

HYDERABAD: Information and Public Relations Minister D. K. Aruna has emphasised the need for girls and women to be united and supportive of each other in the face of harassment and discrimination to claim equal footing at home and in the society.

She was the chief guest at the Women's Mela organised in connection with the ensuing International Women's Day and the fifth anniversary of Naveena, a weekly TV programme, focussing on women's issues here on Saturday. She earlier went round stalls put up by NGOs working in the fields of health, education, entrepreneurship, self-employment, women empowerment.

Ms. Kalpana Sharma, senior journalist, said reporters should delve deeper into an issue and speak to all stakeholders particularly women to present a full and balanced picture. Otherwise, they would be telling only half a story.

While India was growing at 9 per cent, 400 million people were in poverty and 50 per cent of adolescent girls were anaemic and 30 per cent of girls were married before they were 18, leading to high maternal mortality rate.

Instead of creating a feel-good factor about growth rate, media should burst the bubble by focusing on reality of poverty and deprivation suffered by large percentage of population, she said.

Those who resented denigration of women in media should speak out.

Ms. Madeeha Gauhar, theatre artist and activist from Pakistan, said the women's problems were common throughout South Asia.

She said through their theatre group they had been creating awareness on family planning, equal legal rights and against honour killings.

She advised young women to be aware of their rights to become empowered.

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