ISLAMABAD: Special assistant to the prime minister on social welfare Dr Sania Nishtar told a panel of Asian Development Bank that Pakistan had launched its comprehensive Ehsaas Programme aimed at alleviating poverty and ensuring socio-economic welfare of people with a special focus on women.

Ehsaas, she said, is a pioneering anti-poverty programme aimed to change this reality and ensure that all women no matter their background have the opportunity to succeed.

There are currently over 250 policies under the umbrella of Ehsaas, many of which are designed to specifically target women.

At its core, Ehsaas aims to lift the 7 million poorest women in Pakistan out of poverty and help them to achieve their potential.

In 2020, during Covid-19 pandemic, Ehsaas delivered 54pc emergency cash to deserving women.

Through Ehsaas Interest Free Loans programme in the National Poverty Graduation Initiative, 45pc women beneficiaries have been provided opportunities to build micro-enterprises.

With 50pc scholarships reserved for girls, Ehsaas Undergraduate Scholarship programme provides 200,000 need and merit-based scholarship over four years.

She said in Ehsaas primary education, and health and nutrition programmes, conditional cash transfers are being made to mothers and these include a higher stipend amount for girls as compared to boys.

The panel participants discussed that Covid-19 has wiped away a disproportionately higher share of women’s jobs, widening gender gaps in labour market access and increasing women’s vulnerability to poverty.

International experts and policy makers emphasised that Asia Pacific economies should address inequalities in women’s work to ensure a more inclusive ‘new normal’.

Published in Dawn, May 5th, 2021

Opinion

Editorial

Back to bedlam
Updated 25 May, 2022

Back to bedlam

FEAR tactics have never worked in the past, and most likely will not this time either. The government’s ...
25 May, 2022

Balochistan blaze

THE forest fire on the Koh-i-Sulaiman range in Balochistan’s Shirani area is among a series of blazes to have...
25 May, 2022

Unequal citizens

INDIFFERENCE would have been bad enough, but the state’s attitude towards non-Muslims falls squarely in the...
Updated 24 May, 2022

Marching in May

MORE unrest. That is the forecast for the weeks ahead as the PTI formally proceeds with its planned march on...
24 May, 2022

Policy rate hike

THE State Bank has raised its policy rate by 150bps to 13.75pc, hoping that its latest monetary-tightening action...
24 May, 2022

Questionable campaign

OVER the past couple of days, a number of cases have been registered in different parts of the country against...