New Delhi : Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday announced that women don't have to change their names on their passports after marriage anymore.
"Women don't have to submit marriage/divorce certificate for passport. It will be their discretion to use father/mother's name in passport," Prime Minister Modi said this while addressing the commemoration of golden jubilee of Indian Merchant Chamber's ladies wing, thorough video conferencing.
The Prime Minister also lauded the contribution of women of the nation towards the development of the country and said they have potential and are getting better day by day.
"The contribution of women is remarkable. Women of our country have the potential and they strive hard for success in their field. ," he added.
He said that the government has initiated a number of measures to empower the women as they want them to shine.
"Over 70 percent people who have got loans under Mudra Yojana are women. Women contribute the most in the dairy and animal husbandry sector. When women have money, they feel empowered," he said.
He also endorsed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Government's various initiatives to empower women and promote Gender equality and said, "We have recently passed the Maternity Bill. Number of leaves has been more than doubled from 12 to 26 weeks and has also done away with the provision that sought marriage details of woman for issuing passport."
He said that from Panchayats to Parliament, women are leading from the front, adding that even Mahatma Gandhi advocated women empowerment.
"At the time when he returned to India, Bapu met Ganga Baa who gifted him the 'Charkha', which led Mahatma Gandhi to think more seriously on the issue of women empowerment," he said.
The Ladies' Wing of the IMC Chamber of Commerce and Industry is a premier business and professional women's organisation.
It has more than 2,200 members, consisting of entrepreneurs, managers, professionals and women from leading business houses.