UN Women's Office for India, Bhutan, Maldives and Sri Lanka

UN Women’s Office based in New Delhi covers four countries: India, Bhutan, Maldives and Sri Lanka. In these countries, we strengthen women’s rights by working with women, men, feminists, women’s networks, governments, local authorities and civil society.  With all of them, UN Women helps to create national strategies to advance gender equality in line with national and international priorities.

UN Women stands behind women’s equal participation in all aspects of life, focusing on four priority areas:

  1. Ending violence against women: Violence against women and girls is a grave violation of human rights. Its impact ranges from immediate to long-term multiple physical, sexual and mental consequences for women and girls, including death. UN Women responds to violence against women and girls in all its forms – from domestic violence, trafficking to violence in public places.

  2. Promoting Leadership and Participation: Women are underrepresented as voters, as well as in leading positions, whether in elected offices, civil services, the private sector or academia. This occurs despite their proven abilities as leaders and agents of change, and their right to participate equally in democratic governance. UN Women advocates for greater participation of women in politics and decision-making. By working with 67,000 elected women leaders in five states, UN Women was able to ensure that more women participated in local village councils.

  3. National Planning and Budgeting: National plans, policies, institutions and budgets are where governments begin to translate commitments to women into practical progress towards gender equality. Too often, however, they overlook measures to ensure that public services respond to women’s needs and priorities. UN Women works with economists, planners, government officials, bankers and planning bodies such as NITI Aayog to ensure that policies and budgets reflect the needs of women across the country.

  4. Economic Empowerment: Women make enormous contributions to economies, whether in businesses, on farms, as entrepreneurs or employees, or by doing unpaid care work at home.But they also remain disproportionately affected by poverty, discrimination and exploitation.Many innovations with women farmers, women workers at home, rural entrepreneurs, former women scavengers are re-defining women’s participation in the economy. UN Women sees greater land and property rights as essential ingredients for long term change.

In India, UN Women builds on a strong foundation, working closely with the Government of India and civil society to set national standards for achieving gender equality. In Bhutan, Maldives and Sri Lanka, UN Women works through the United Nations to ensure that women become equal partners in development.

News and Updates

Women's Voices from the Informal Economy at SEWA

19 August 2016

The consultation “Women's Voices from the Informal Economy” brought together members of the Self-Employed Women's Association (SEWA) from across India to share their diverse experiences as workers in the informal economy with members of the UN Secretary General’s High-Level Panel (HLP) for Women’s Economic Empowerment and other distinguished guests. The consultation took place at SEWA headquarters in Ahmedabad, Gujarat state, India. It was...... More

UN Panel hears from women in the informal economy

09 August 2016

Members of the UN Secretary General’s High-Level Panel on Women’s Economic Empowerment meet women workers and entrepreneurs to understand challenges, learn about solutions. Panel will submit a global report providing recommendations for actions that can be taken by governments, the private sector, civil society and the UN system to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals which call for the economic empowerment of women... More

Women Transform: Celebrating Women Making a Difference

31 March 2016

The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), MyGov India, India’s first of its kind participatory governance initiative, and the United Nations in India have launched an online contest to crowdsource stories from across India that celebrate the indomitable spirit of women who have made a difference – ‘Women Transforming India’. The campaign was launched on International Women’s Day 2016 and is inviting stories of women breaking new ground... More

EQUAL HALF - a documentary film from India

Women form half of India’s population and make enormous contributions to its economy, yet they lag behind in almost all socio-economic indicators. How to ensure women have access to equal resources and opportunities? more