Ratnamala Sudesh Vaidhya
Regional Coordinator – Mahila Raisatta Andolan
Nagpur, Maharashtra – India
Ratnamala is an elected representative at the village level. She works with elected women officials and women from the community in six districts and sees the value in building a connection between the two groups. She is especially interested in working with young women who are educated to foster public engagement and works with a youth group.
Ratnamala has successfully advocated for women’s access to water, local transportation (free transit passes for women), and to include both a husband and wife’s name on a house nameplate. Through her own experience, she knows the challenges that women elected to office face, and that women chiefs face. She personally dealt with a no-confidence motion that men initiated and feel that women don’t have the information needed when elected to local office. She believes that working with local elected panchayats is important since they have the power to remove barriers and to provide funds for women and other groups.
Rise Up Cohort: CIP India – 2018