Committee concerned about implementation status of safe motherhood rights

Kathmandu / July 26: The Women and Social Committee under the House of Representatives (HoR) has directed different ministries for the effective implementation of ‘The Right to Safe Motherhood and Reproductive Health Act, 2018.’

A meeting of the committee on Sunday directed the Office of Prime Minister and Council of Ministers, the Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Home Affairs, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology; and the Ministry of Industry, Commerce and Supplies for the same. The meeting discussed the practices of maternity leave related to safe motherhood and reproductive health rights.

The committee also instructed the Ministry of Women, Children and Senior Citizens to make necessary arrangements and coordinate for the exercise of the rights as per the law.

Committee chairperson Nirudevi Pal said, ”Some women-related legal provisions are said to be contravening to each other, thus obstructing their effective enforcement. In this context, the National Women’s Commission has been asked to identify if there are such provisions, study about reasons behind the less effectiveness of women-related rights and update the committee about its findings.”

The Act has, under the right to obstetric leave, guaranteed that any woman working in a governmental, non-governmental or private organization or institution shall have the right to get obstetric leave with pay, for a minimum of ninety-eight days before or after the delivery.

In the meeting, Former Minister for Women, Children and Senior Citizens Thammaya Thapa, Committee members Bimala Nepali, Ganga Chaudhary Satgauwa and Narayan Khatiwada said though the provision of 98-day maternity leave had been implemented by the government offices, it was yet to be enforced by the private sector and in rural areas, highlighting the need of efforts for its guarantee. RSS

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