NEW YORK CITY (TIP): Aishwaryaa Rajinikanth Dhanush, UN Women’s Advocate for Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in India, strongly believes that to bring gender equality in the society we have to first understand what equality means. She spoke of this equality beginning from home where a girl is given the same status and opportunities as a boy. The film director, classical dancer and writer, who was appointed UN Women’s Advocate in August this year, was delivering a speech at UN Women’s Headquarter in NYC on October 27. America Tamil Sangam and UN Women jointly organized the event. In his welcome speech America Tamil Sangam President Prakash Swamy described how extremely talented Aishwaryaa maintains her simple, down to earth approach despite being daughter of India’s biggest star Rajinikanth and wife of another superstar Dhanush. He also highlighted Aishwaryaa’s social awareness and urge to help people in distress that had made her ideal for the advocate’s job.
“As a first step in our march towards equality, we would need to understand what equality means. Now I understand that this has been debated and continues to be debated by philosophers, politicians ad nauseam”, said Aishwaryaa. “And I understand we are yet to fully understand what equality means.” She also admitted that the present situation is grim but it has a solution too. “While an understanding of what is equality is important, but to wait or to make half-hearted attempts until we fully understand, would result in future generations looking back at us and wondering what sort of society did we live in! And we should be conscious of what sort of legacy are we likely to leave behind.”
UN Women Deputy Executive Director Lakshmi Puri briefed the audience about the transformations UN wants to bring to society with their vision for the 2030 Agenda and Planet 50-50 by 2030. International Women’s Day celebration on 8 March 2016 was aimed to mobilize people around the world to call for a Planet 50-50 by 2030. UN Women is organizing a series of diverse, high-profile events in over 40 countries, where ordinary citizens, activists, musicians, athletes, students, security personnel, scholars and stock exchange officials will be among those who commit to “Stepping It Up for Gender Equality. “One woman can represent 500 women better than 500 men can represent one woman.” Said Puri. UN Women Executive Director, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka also delivered a brief speech where she expressed hope thatAishwaryaa with her genuine commitmentto the causewill be a true game changer to make this planet equal for men and women.