Imphal: Urmila Chanam has been awarded The Laadli Media and Advertising Awards for Gender Sensitivity 2020for her article highlighting how lack of infrastructure in rural regions impacts the quality of life of girls and women, and bagged the Best News Feature (English Print Category) at the prestigious awards from Population First and UNFPA on November 20, 2020.
Rekha Sharma, Chairperson, National Commission for Women (NCW) was the Chief Guest and Argentina Matavel Piccin, representative for UNFPA in India and Country Director Bhutan was the Guest of Honour in the award function. According to Dr. A. L. Sharada, Director, Population First, “The Laadli Media Awards prove that even in the worst situations and cynical times there is hope. There is hope because there are many who are being true to their profession in journalism, showing great sensitivity and compassion, raising critical questions about gender inequalities, discrimination and violence and showing mirror to our politicians and all of us. They are role models for many aspiring journalists and media persons. We honour them with pride.”
Seventy- five media persons received the awards and 18 media persons received the jury appreciation citations for their outstanding effort in highlighting gender concerns from across the country in 10 languages. The jury included eminent members of the media, academia and social activists.
The Laadli Media and Advertising Awards was instituted by Population First, a social impact organization with the support of UNFPA to achieve the objective of redefining the values, gender perceptions and equations of the media and advertising, to empower media to be the change agents and be instrumental in bringing about gender sensitive policies and programs as well as promote a more positive image of women in society.
Speaking on the occasion, Urmila said, “Gender is not an isolate subject rather it is the lens through which we should see everything- be it child birth, nutrition, morbidity, mortality, education, livelihood, safety, survival, opportunities and so on.” She pointed out how only few newspapers have a gender beat or section assigned to gender which indicates the scope of gender sensitization of media.“Winning Laadli Awards has strengthened my resolve to keep investigating, writing and bringing the spotlight on gender issues from a woman’s perspective and facilitate government action.”