Priyanka Chopra Jonas, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, has praised Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government for its "responsible attitude towards women and improvement in their condition in the state". Stressing on gender equality, the actress said government schemes are there, but the real need is to change the mindset of people towards girls and women. Priyanka, who was on a two-day visit to the Uttar Pradesh capital since Monday, also described child abuse as a bane of society.
"No matter how many schemes you implement, they have done (their job). But real change can come only by changing the mindset of society towards females. Our country India has a huge population and the mindset is very old. Until this mindset that girls do not need anything, girls do not have any rights and girls are our property changes, how will a transformation come on a large scale," she told PTI.
The UNICEF goodwill ambassador lauded the Uttar Pradesh government's women helpline number '1090', saying it "can digitally track the victim and provide her help in times of distress". On Monday, she had visited the centre in Lucknow from where the helpline is operated.
Boys have to be taught to respect girls and how they should treat them, said Priyanka Chopra, who also visited a few girls' schools and anganwadi centres, and interacted with people there. "It is important to end stereotypes that girls are 'paraya dhan', what is the need for girls to study and why should money be wasted on girls. Such thinking needs to be changed in the house. Until these changes are brought, not much can be achieved," she said.
To a question on why films are not prominently highlighting cases of child abuse, she said, "I have not done Hindi films for a long time. But I would say that you put high equity on films. We are not lawmakers, we only make films and stories."
"People watch movies, enjoy movies and go. But change will not come because somebody made a social media comment. Change will not come because something has been shown in a scene (of a movie). Change will come when there is a change in the mindset," the actor said.
Lauding digitisation in the context of implementation of the government schemes to end child abuse, she said, "The pace at which digitisation has taken place in the country, it has not taken place at the same pace anywhere else in the world." ALSO READ: Not Farhan Akhtar, but Priyanka Chopra wished to do Jee Le Zaraa with Katrina Kaif & Alia Bhatt
Priyanka Chopra said Uttar Pradesh's population is larger than that of Brazil and an anganwadi worker has to keep 50 registers and something might get missed sometime. Owing to digitisation, today there is an application that has all the relevant information, she said, apparently referring to the POSHAN tracker app developed by the central government to eliminate malnutrition.
The app has information about children covered by an anganwadi worker.
She added, "Today maximum number of girls are going to school in the state. A lot of work is being done for the nutrition of children. The first nutrition app in the country has been started here. Through the app, not only Anganwadi workers but also doctors can track malnourished children but can visit their homes and talk to their families and help them. The state has benefited a lot from digitisation."
(Inputs from PTI)