New Delhi, April 13: In a unique initiative, Minister of State for External Affairs and Culture Meenakshi Lekhi on Wednesday led the first introductory meeting of All Women Ambassadors’ Group here.
All women Ambassadors to India, spouses of male ambassadors and female Charge d’Affaires of all embassies attended the meeting.
The other attendees of the event included women officers from both the Ministries of External Affairs and Culture.
The event was organised as a joint initiative of the Ministry of Culture and Ministry of External Affairs to celebrate Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.
The intent to form this group lies in the keen desire to realise the universal theme of sisterhood and stand in solidarity with each other and for each other, a statement said.
The request to form an All-Women Ambassadors’ Group was floated to the Minister by Ritva Koukku-Ronde, Ambassador of Finland to India.
The formation of the grouping is of immense significance in the light of limited representation of women in the international diplomatic arena, an official said.
Through periodic meetings and discussions, the group aims to gain an insight into female leadership and gender equality in political and private sector.
Lekhi underscored the importance of this network as a means to facilitate communication and create a support web for all Women Ambassadors to India.
She spoke on Gender equality which according to her is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.
She also highlighted the need to realise the Sustainable Development Goal 5 — that is Gender Equality through Women Empowerment to create an inclusive and just society.
The event also provided a cultural touch of India to all the Ambassadors as there were cultural performances organised by the Ministry of Culture
Kathak virtuosoShovana Narayan presented a beautiful dance presentation which was followed by a presentation from Papiha Desai and dance troupe on “Dances of India” highlighting the kaleidoscopic diversity of dance forms of India — Garba, Dandiya, Giddah among many others.
Lekhi highlighted the importance of the timing of the formation of the All-Women Ambassadors’ Group in the background of the just concluded Navaratri celebrations. She also informed the Ambassadors of the rituals and practices associated with the festival. Special Navaratri cuisine was served for all Ambassadors.