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Kvinnliga arbetare, framför allt kroppsarbetande kvinnor och de i hushållsnära yrken, får rutinmässigt lägre lön än sina manliga motsvarigheter. Foto: Nandhini Shanmugham/IM

Nepal Supreme Court Orders Government to Ensure Equal Pay for Females

Published 7 November 2017

The Supreme Court of Nepal directed the government authorities to ensure equal remuneration for male and female workers on 3 November 2017. The order was issued in response to a writ petition lodged by a team of lawyers including Raju Prasad Chapagain, Chairperson of IM partner JuRI Nepal.

Even though the constitution of Nepal prohibits gender-based discrimination with respect to remuneration and work-related benefits, it is neither practiced nor monitored by the authorities. Female workers, especially in informal sectors such as labor workers, domestic help et cetera, routinely get payed less than their male counterparts. Such sectors employ 90 percent of women laborers according to the second national women's convention Report, 2013. The petitioners sought an apex court order to ensure the rights of all such laborers. They also called for ensuring women's right to equality, right to the accessibility of justice, right to work and right against exploitation.

Strict Gender Roles
Nepal is a patriarchal society that considers men to be superior to women. This deeply rooted belief has determined strict gender roles and barred women from accessing equal opportunities to education, work, and services. The Supreme Court’s oral verdict is an important milestone towards achieving gender equality. The Court is yet to present a written decision.

IM in Nepal has partnered with JuRI Nepal as its national advocacy partner. The petition was part of JuRI’s “Promoting Human Dignity Project” funded by IM that works towards promoting Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of women, men, girls and boys from marginalized communities. It gives special focus on ensuring their claim towards fundament rights to education, livelihood, justice, social securities and protection.