Break­ing the Glass Ceil­ing

The ses­sion stressed upon in­creas­ing con­tri­bu­tion of women in the growth of port and ship­ping sec­tor

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The ses­sion stressed upon in­creas­ing con­tri­bu­tion of women in the growth of port and ship­ping sec­tor

Con­tri­bu­tion and lead­er­ship of women in econ­omy and trade has in­creased and like ev­ery sec­tor, mar­itime in­dus­try is no dif­fer­ent. Keep­ing this in view, South Asia Mar­itime and Lo­gis­tics Fo­rum had a ded­i­cated fo­rum for women, named as South Asia Women Fo­rum, which was hosted by Women’s In­ter­na­tional Ship­ping & Trad­ing As­so­ci­a­tion (WISTA) in as­so­ci­a­tion with Mar­itime Gate­way and Colombo In­ter­na­tional Mar­itime Con­fer­ence (CIMC). The pro­ceed­ings of the day started with wel­come ad­dress by San­jam Sahi Gupta, Founder & Pres­i­dent, WISTA In­dia, and Board Mem­ber of WISTA In­ter­na­tional. Capt Vivek S Anand, Di­rec­tor, NYK Lines (In­dia) Ltd, in his open­ing re­mark said that half of the world’s pop­u­la­tion is women, hence they should con­trib­ute equally to the world’s re­sources in the form of so­cial, ed­u­ca­tion, eco­nomic and all other forms. He rem­i­nisced many ini­tia­tives taken up by WISTA In­dia. On this oc­ca­sion, Dr. Malini V. Shankar, IAS, Di­rec­tor Gen­eral of Ship­ping re­called her ex­pe­ri­ences as women in pub­lic ser­vice. She women quit­ting jobs is a loss for the sec­tor, and there were some chal­lenges for women which were com­mon in all sec­tors. A ses­sion was con­vened with the theme “Women trans­form­ing Ship­ping: Break­ing the Glass Ceil­ing”. While mod­er­at­ing the ses­sion, Neera Saggi, For­mer Pres­i­dent of Bom­bay Cham­ber of Com­merce & In­dus­try raised con­cern over fall­ing num­ber of women work­force in the coun­try. Danae Bezan­takou, MD, Nav­i­ga­tor Ship­ping Con­sul­tants (Greece); a mem­ber of WISTA for about two decades re­call­ing her ex­pe­ri­ence in the ship­ping sec­tor and man­ag­ing a com­pany founded by her par­ents, said that there were not many women busi­ness lead­ers in Greece and there were ef­forts be­ing made to cre­ate more women busi­ness lead­ers. Olga La­zovskaya, Ad­vi­sor to the Pres­i­dent, Rus­sian Cham­ber of Ship­ping; and Founder & Pres­i­dent of WISTA Rus­sia, shar­ing her pro­fes­sional jour­ney said that she had en­cour­aged women par­tic­i­pa­tion in the marine in­sur­ance in­dus­try as the sec­tor is mostly (95 per cent) dom­i­nated by male in Rus­sia at a time when 55 per cent of coun­try’s work force is women, of which only 10 per cent are at man­age­ment po­si­tions. Sara Falak­naz, Chief Global In­no­va­tion Of­fi­cer, DP World, UAE, stressed on the pos­i­tive change in at­ti­tude tak­ing place to­wards women work­force and also em­pha­sized her com­pany’s ef­fort in this di­rec­tion. AS Venkatesh, MD, Pop­u­lar Foun­da­tions said even though he doesn’t be­long to the sec­tor but ap­pre­ci­ated the ac­com­plish­ments of the ‘bet­ter half of his life’ Vinita Venkatesh, Di­rec­tor, Kr­ish­na­p­at­nam Port Con­tainer Ter­mi­nal. He added about en­gage­ment in many com­mu­nity ac­tiv­i­ties in the field of women em­pow­er­ment to en­sure a de­serv­ing life for them. Elab­o­rat­ing the stand of a work­ing lady mar­ried to a tra­di­tional In­dian fam­ily, he said it was es­sen­tial to con­vey the mes­sage to all fam­ily mem­bers about the im­por­tance and con­tri­bu­tion of a woman pro­fes­sional to an in­dus­try and so­ci­ety which made easy to garner sup­port in the fam­ily. Con­ven­tion­ally de­fined roles of a man and wife needed to change and mu­tual re­spect to part­ner’s role could help women to scale up in life. Preetika Mehro­tra, Di­rec­tor, Re­gional Spe­cial­iza­tion Leader, Stan­ton Chase; and Ex­ec­u­tive Com­mit­tee Mem­ber of WISTA Hong Kong re­call­ing her as­so­ci­a­tion with mar­itime sec­tor said as part of an MNC ex­ec­u­tive search firm she en­cour­aged more par­tic­i­pa­tion of women in the in­dus­try at man­age­rial po­si­tions. No­tably, some of the se­nior lead­ers and dig­ni­taries from the sec­tor Capt. Vivek Singh Anand, Dr. Deepak Shetty, Capt. Anil Singh, and Sabyasachi Ha­jara, among others were present to sup­port their women col­leagues at the fo­rum.

(L to R) Neera Saggi, For­mer Pres­i­dent of Bom­bay Cham­ber of Com­merce & In­dus­try; San­jam Sahi Gupta, Founder & Pres­i­dent, WISTA In­dia; Preetika Mehro­tra, Di­rec­tor, Re­gional Spe­cial­iza­tion Leader, Stan­ton Chase; AS Venkatesh, MD, Pop­u­lar Foun­da­tions; Sara Falak­naz, Chief Global In­no­va­tion Of­fi­cer, DP World, UAE; Olga La­zovskaya, Ad­vi­sor to the Pres­i­dent, Rus­sian Cham­ber of Ship­ping; and Founder & Pres­i­dent of WISTA Rus­sia; Danae Bezan­takou, MD, Nav­i­ga­tor Ship­ping Con­sul­tants

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