The Niti Aayog on Sunday conferred awards on 15 women from different areas for their ground-breaking endeavours and displaying role as changemakers.

These women from different walks of life were felicitated by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh here on the occasion of the International Women's Day.

Since 2018, the awards have been hosted under the aegis of Niti Aayog's Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP) with special focus on entrepreneurship.

The defense minister emphasised on the role of women in the workforce in contributing to the economic growth of the nation, the Aayog said in a release.

"Today's awardees have overcome financial and societal challenges not just to redefine the word entrepreneurship but also refine it. I congratulate the Niti Aayog and WEP for providing women entrepreneurs with a platform to share their dreams, failures and victories with each other and grow from them," Singh said.

The awardees included Priyanka Mokshmar, co-founder of Vaayu Home Appliances that provides affordable and environmentally feasible alternatives to traditional AC units across India.

It also includes Ramya Venkataraman's Centre for Teacher Accreditation (CENTA), which creates a certification framework for assessment of teachers' skills and competency; Shilpi Kapoor for BarrierBreak, a company focused on the accessibility of technology for those with disabilities; Rinka Banerjee's Thinking Forks for a consulting organisation, with expertise in the food and nutrition industry.

Among others also included Nidhi Pant for combating issues around waste and farmer living standards, through her Science for Society's innovative idea of selling dehydrated vegetable snacks; Anupriya Balikai's Spookfish Innovations for standards of products and quality control assurance for food packaging.

Praveen Nair was given the special jury award for Salaam Baalak Trust that has successfully worked in rehabilitating over 81,000 destitute and homeless children.

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