India’s female labour force participation rate is just 27%, one of the lowest in the world. The dismal number is the result of persistent gender inequality, as well as a lack of technical skills and jobs for women. And that’s why, 83-year-old Ela Bhatt has dedicated her life to fighting for change.
In 1972, Bhatt founded the Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), the world’s largest trade union (pdf) for economically backward and unorganised women workers in India. Since then, she’s been working to provide women with social and financial security, becoming a crusader for women’s economic rights. Bhatt was recognised for her efforts with the Padma Bhushan in 1986, one of the country’s highest honours for civilians."
Read article by Suneera Tandon from Quartz India.