In January 2012, Nirnaya requested funds to continue their re-granting partnership with UAF. While India has significant legislation surrounding women’s rights such as: gender based violence, sexual harassment, rape, discrimination, sex pre-selection, dowry harassment and political participation, there continue to be major barriers in implementation. Nirnaya requested funds to support the incorporation of Rapid Response Grantmaking to enable their organization in reaching women’s groups and individuals who live remotely and have little to no resources to respond to urgent issues in their communities.
Although India is a signatory of the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women and has some of the most progressive legislation for women’s rights in its region, gender inequality is still salient in Indian society. Women are still paid lower wages than men on average, have less education and formal skill training, and lack property rights that would enable them to obtain financial independence and seek entrepreneurial opportunities. Violence against women is also prevalent in Indian society, and many women still lack decision-making powers with regard to their bodies and sexuality.
During the last re-granting cycle, Nirnaya was able to support the case of a dalit WHRD who was threatened by “dominant caste” members because she was outspoken about inequality in her village. They also provided a grant to a group where a community faced by a natural disaster “moved into a rights based mode of action” after being recipients of relief. This year this organization intends to continue to build partnerships with networks and to support work dealing with caste or communal tensions.