Smriti Zubin Irani, Minister of Women and Child Development (MWCD) launched a ‘Guide on Gender-Inclusive Communication’ in Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi on 28th November 2023. The guide, titled “Gender-Inclusive Communication”, was prepared by the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration (LBSNAA) in collaboration with UN WOMEN and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. A result of extensive consultation with stakeholders, the Guide provides recommendations and examples on use of Gender-Inclusive language that avoids bias towards a particular sex or social gender and is less likely to convey or amplify gender stereotypes.
The guide covers the use of language in English, Hindi, and other Regional languages, based on the “Handbook on Combatting Gender Stereotypes” by Supreme Court of India and other national and global best practices customized to suit the requirements of the Indian citizens. The guide also includes a checklist for gender-related revisions and key resources for further reference. The guide is intended to assist in gender-inclusive writing, review, and translation of documents and communications by government officials, civil servants, media professionals, educators, and other stakeholders. It aims to: heighten awareness, empower individuals to navigate daily communications with a commitment to gender neutrality and inclusivity, and fundamentally reshape the narrative towards a society where language becomes an agent for positive change. By highlighting and acknowledging implicit biases present in everyday language, the guide can serve as a catalyst for change.