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Gender Issue Call For United Stand: Bhatnagar

Gender Issue Call For United Stand: Bhatnagar
Assistant Minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation Veena Bhatnagar with the author of the newly launched book, Vindu Maharaj. Photo: Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation
September 10
11:00 2017


Gender issues should not be politicised. It requires a united stand.

This statement was made by the assistant minister for Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Veena Bhatnagar, during the launch of the book ‘Cultural Prison; A Daughter’s Worth’.

The event was held at the Suva Business Centre in Suva the past week.

The book is written by Vindu Maharaj, a local writer who has lived  in Sydney for the past 32 years.

Ms Bhatnagar said gender issues call for a united stand to transform the deeply rooted cultural beliefs to enable empowerment of women across all sectors.

“The book is about the past but focuses on obstacles to women empowerment, gender equality and the rights of ordinary Fijian women.

“Women’s inequality and gender discrimination are still harsh realities in many societies including Fiji.

“Discrimination of women is still a real problem. Even though we have made huge strides against it here in Fiji, discrimination is still devastating throughout the world.

“I thank Ms Maharaj for being bold enough in attempting to break the silence, for recognising women’s rights and making a difference in changing the belief system and changing the mind sets of people,” Ms Bhatnagar said.

Ms Maharaj said she was inspired to write the story by a friend she used to work with.

“I hope to set the scene about cultural restrictions and perhaps give an insight of where the concepts of characters came from.

“I planned to write about the dark secrets within our culture, especially the treatment of our girls and women. I wanted to write about children growing up in our culture and how those restrictions affected their development into adulthood,” Ms Maharaj said.

Edited by Karalaini Waqanidrola



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