Titled ‘Astitva’, Lokmat celebrated womanhood through this event by recognising women’s contribution in various fields. Some of the known names present at the event were Vidya Balan, Geeta Phogat, Divya Dutta, Mahesh Bhatt, Jennifer Larson and Neerja Chowdhury
BestMediaInfo Bureau | Mumbai | March 22, 2017
Lokmat has tried to recognise the efforts and contribution made by women in their respective fields through the sixth edition of its Women’s Summit 2017. One of the publications in Maharashtra and Goa markets, Lokmat celebrated womanhood through the event. In association with United Nations (UN) women and the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), the women’s summit called ‘Astitva’ (Through Her Eyes - the ultimate expression of womanhood) hosted women achievers from different walks of life who shared their experiences, views and opinions on various topics.
Some of the known names present at the event included actress Vidya Balan, Olympic medallist in wrestling Geeta Phogat, actress Divya Dutta, film maker Mahesh Bhatt, Deputy Principal Officer US Embassy and Consulates, Jennifer Larson and journalist Neerja Chowdhury who expressed their opinion on various topics on women empowerment.
Other guests at the event were Mukta Tilak, Mayor of Pune, Dr Rebecca Tavares, UN Women’s Representative for India, Preeti Patkar, Social worker, Henriette Ahrens, Head, Programmes Officer at UNICEF, Dr. Usha Kakade, Chairperson of USK Foundation, Devita Saral, CEO and Design Head at VU Technologies and Vijay Darda, Chairman of Lokmat Media.
There were three categories of awards, Veena Devi Jeevan Gaurav Puraskar, Jyotsna Devi Karya Gaurav Puraskar and Lokmat Sakhi Sanman Puraskar given away to women in different categories like social, bravery, health, education, art, literature and business. The summit offered a platform to know women’s perspectives, views and opinions and to felicitate the achievers.
At a panel discussion, Phogat said, “A woman contributes to 40 per cent of the sports industry across the world. Dangal was a platform to bring in a change in the minds of people and to create awareness in the world not only about wrestling as a sport but to showcase that even women can make a difference through it. Attitude and overcoming one’s fear is important for women.”
When asked about Haryana’s low female ratio due to female foeticide, she commented, “In our society even today, girls are not given their rights and not considered at par with men. This mindset is slowly changing now, women are coming forward with courage and power to prove to the world and to make a difference in the society. ”
Balan shared her excitement to play a role of a powerful protagonist standing for her rights in Begum Jaan. She said, “My work is my extension as a woman and I think most successful and powerful women feel awkward and guilty for being most powerful but I rejoice my power and I’m discovering my power day by day. We have voices within all of us, but it is cloaked under societal pressures. When you have nothing to lose, it is very liberating. Every woman should be true to herself and her truth will be discovered through her actions.”
On women empowerment, Bhatt expressed his views saying, “Feminism is not a gender, women are against women and at times men give their life for women. Thus feminism is a human aspiration. I owe whatever I have to the women in my life.”
Actress Dutta unveiled her book called ‘Me and Maa’. When asked about her relationship with her mother, Dutt mentioned, “I have had three different types of relationships with my mother; Firstly, as a mother, a best friend and a role reversal, my mother being a daughter.” Her book reveals her life and her connect with her mother speaking about how she has been a strong pillar of support for her success.
Speaking on the occasion Darda, Chairman, Lokmat Media, said, “We at Lokmat are very proud to host the sixth women’s summit today to recognise the contribution and achievements of women. Through this platform we give our audience and readers an opportunity to witness the role model women. It’s a platform to share views openly and award some exemplary achievers. We hope this is a step in motivating today’s women to achieve success and soar higher.”