National Commission for Women (NCW) – Composition, Functions, Chairperson | UPSC Notes

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National commission for women

National Commission for Women

  • Statutory body constituted under the National Commission for Women Act, 1990
  • Came into existence in 1992 

Functions — 

  1. Apex body for the women rights 
  2. A constant legal and constitutional review for betterment of women 
  3. As a consultative and advisory body for any work of government towards any women related matter 
  4. Make recommendation to the government rebadging women rights and a better environment for women to live
  5. Take up extensive research work for women rights 
  6. Help the victim though legal intervention and taking up the case to the judiciary | helping them during the entire process
  7. Funding the women rights organisations and women related bodies working for betterment of women 
  8. Assist in the investigation process in women related crime 
  9. Spread awareness about the women rights among common people 
  10. Formulate guidelines and recommendation to make a work place better for women 

Drawbacks — 

  1. No actual legislative powers
  2. It can only make non-obligatory recommendations, which the government can easily refuse to act upon 
  3. No enforcement mechanism — joins the rank of protesters and agitators demanding justice 
  4. Does only the mouth service — no real work with conclusive gains for women community — it is not because it doesn’t have the will, but it is not empowered enough to do so.
  5. Funding depends upon the Central government — takes away the autonomy of the commission 
  6. Major appointments to key position is done by Central Government and thus is often politically influenced. 
  7. It is reduced to just a mere ‘toothless tigress’.

Way forward

  1. Provide more autonomy — let it make its appointments by itself and without the intervention of Government
  2. Provide more legislative powers 
  3. Provide some mechanism to ensure enforcement of its recommendations 
  4. Funding mechanism should become more institutionalised and transparent 
  5. If possible grant the Constitutional Status to the Commission (like that of NCSC, NCBC) — at least start a discussion in this regard


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