Recognising her role in women rights movement in Nepal, the US-based Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation has selected CA member and lawyer Sapana Pradhan Malla for this year’s Gruber International Women’s Rights Prize under the category ‘Advancing Gender Equality’.
The foundation has recognised her role in securing women’s reproductive rights and her fight against laws discriminatory against women.
Malla will share the prize with Iraqi women rights activist Yanar Mohammad and Palestine feminist Dr Nadera Shalhoub. The foundation has recognised Mohammad’s efforts to launch women rights movement in Iraq and Shalhoub’s efforts against violence against women.
“Malla has been a leader in advocating legal reforms that have extended gender equality in many areas,” the foundation stated. It added that Yanar, co-founder of Women Freedom in Iraq, has succeeded in protecting a number of women from domestic abuse and honour killings.
Nadera, a leading feminist scholar and therapist, according to the foundation, has worked to end domestic violence against Palestinian women, particularly in what have been referred to as honour killings.
The prize carries a purse of half a million dollars (Rs 34.4 million) along with a gold medal. “I am glad at the news,” Malla told this daily. “This honours my work,” she added. She said she would invest the award money to build a shelter for women victims of violence and to strengthen the Forum for Women, Law and Development (FWLD), of which she is a former chairperson.
Issuing a press release, the FWLD expressed happiness at the decision of the Gruber Foundation. “This is in recognition of our former chairperson’s role in women rights movement.”
“This recognises her fight for women’s rights and her contribution to reforms in laws discriminatory against women,” said FWLD executive director Sabin Shrestha. “We are proud that our former chairperson has become the first Nepali woman to receive the prize,” Shrestha added.