United Nations: CEDAW Nominees - Resumes

Indira Jaising (India)

Date and Place of Birth: 3rd June 1940, Mumbai, India

Working languages:


Current position/ function:

Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India
Secretary, Lawyers Collective

Main Professional activities:

  • Practicing law in the Supreme Court of India
  • Editor of Monthly Magazine “The Lawyers”
  • Director, Women’s Rights Initiative, Lawyers Collective

Educational Background:

  • L.L.M., University of Bombay
  • Solicitor, High Court of Bombay
  • B.A. University of Bangalore, Karnataka
  • Fellowship, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, London

Other main activities in the field relevant to the mandate of the treaty body concerned:

  • Worked for National Commission for Women, India
  • Organized workshops and authored reports on women’s issues
  • Assisted in drafting a law on domestic violence (Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act, 2005)

List of most recent publications in the field:

  • “One Step Closer to Equality” Article published in Little Magazine, 2007
  • “Staying Alive: First Monitoring & Evaluation Report 2007 on Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act 2005”, LCWRI, 2007
  • Co-author, “From the Abnormal to the Normal: Preventing Sex Selective Abortions through the Law”, LCWRI, 2007

Mary Shanthi Dairiam (Malaysia)

Date and Place of Birth:

17 September 1939 / Malaysia

Working Language:

English, Malay

Current Position:

  • CEDAW Committee Member, 2005-2008
  • CEDAW Committee, Rapporteur, 2007-2008
  • Member, Gender Equality Task Force, UNDP, 2007- present
  • Member, Advisory Panel, Disability Rights Fund, Boston, USA. 2008-present
  • Member of the Board of Directors, International Women Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific (IWRAW), Malaysia, 1996- Present
  • Non Aligned Movement (NAM) Institute for the Empowerment of Women. Member of the Advisory Committee, Malaysia, 2007- Present
  • The National Advisory Council on Women, Member, Malaysia, March 2005- present

Main Professional Activities:

  • Member of the Board of Directors, International Women Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific (IWRAW), Malaysia, 1996- Present
  • Executive Director, International Women Rights Action Watch Asia Pacific (IWRAW), Malaysia, 1993-2004
  • Project Officer, Women and Development Programme, Commonwealth Secretariat, United Kingdom, March – July 1992
  • Programme Associate, Asia Pacific Forum on Women Law and Development (APWLD), Malaysia, 1988 – 1990
  • Head, Programme and Technical Division, Federation of Family Planning Associations, Malaysia, 1982 – 1985

Educational Background:

  • University of Sussex, United Kingdom, MA Gender and Development, 1991
  • University of Madras, India, MA English Literature, 1962
  • University of Madras, India, BA English Literature, 1960

Other Main Activities Relevant to CEDAW:

  • United Nations-Trained advocates in Aceh, Indonesia to promote women’s right to equality through law reform that is compliant with the CEDAW Convention, 2007;Trained Governments of Sierra Leone and Liberia in the preparation of their reports to the CEDAW Committee, 2005 and 2007;Did a need assessment for the implementation of the Convention in Afghanistan, 2006; Trained governments of Cambodia, Malaysia, Samoa, Tajikistan and Thailand to prepare them for the review of their compliance with their obligations under the Convention by the CEDAW Committee, 2004-2006; Personal Consultant to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights for East Timor, October 2000-January 2001;
  • Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE)-Carried out an analysis of the draft Gender Equality Law in Tajikistan to assess comprehensiveness and compliance with the requirements of CEDAW, March 2003; Conducted a review of the compliance of the laws of Tajikistan with the requirements of the CEDAW Convention, August 2002

List of Most Recent Publications:

  • The Practice of Child Marriage in South Asian Countries: A Gross Form of Gender Based Discrimination and a Violation of Human Rights, July 2006;
  • The Relevance of the Links between Human Rights, the Beijing Platform for Action and the Millennium Development Goals, February 2005;
  • A Rights Based Approach to Women’s Health: Relationship between Research and Policy, October 2004;
  • Building Capacity for Change: Training Manual on the Application of the Principles of the Convention to Promote Women’s rights, Editor, IWRAW Asia Pacific. 2001/2002

Silvia Pimentel (Brazil)

Date and Place of Birth:

03/01/1940 – Minas Gerais, BRAZIL

Working Languages:

Spanish, English, French

Current Position/ Function:

PHD Professor in the program of graduation and post-grade studies of Law at Pontifícia Universidade Católica (PUC) / São Paulo

Main Professional Activities:

  • Currently, proceeds teaching Law at the Catholic University of São Paulo (PUC-SP), where she began teaching in 1973. Also in the program of post-grade studies of Law.
  • Expert of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, CEDAW Committee / UN, from 2005 to 2008

Educational Background:

  • PHD in Legal Philosophy, PUC/SP – 1977
  • Master in Psychology of Education, PUC-SP – 1973
  • Law Degree, PUC-SP - 1970

Other Main Activities in the Field, Relevant to the Mandate of the Treaty Body Concerned:

Non Governmental

  • Founding Member of the Latin American and Caribbean Committee for the Defense of Women’s Rights (CLADEM), 1987. Member of its Honorary Consulting Council, 2003 – present Coordinator of the Brazilian Section of CLADEM, 1992-2005
  • Founding Member of the International Women’s Rights Action Watch (IWRAW), 1985
  • President of the Institute for the Advancement of Equity (IPE) 2003 – present;
  • Member of the Director Council of Commission of Citizenship and Reproduction (CCR);

Selected Advocacy Experiences:

  • Author of “The New Civil Statute of Women”, a proposal for changing the Brazilian Civil Code. Presented to the National Congress in 1981, it was included in the reform of the Brazilian Civil Code in 2002
  • Participation in the drafting process of the Brazilian Constitution, as one of the six women who wrote the historical “Women’s Letter to the Constituents”, in August of 1986.

List of Most Recent Publication in this Field:

  • “Education and Legal Literacy”. In “The Circle of Empowerment”- CEDAW Book 25th Anniversary, organized by Cees Flinterman and Beate Schopp-Schilling, Feminist Press, NY, 2007
  • “Legitimate Defense of Honour, or Murder with Impunity?” - critical study of legislation and case law in Latin America by Silvia Pimentel, Valeria Pandjiardian and Juliana Belloque, edited by Lynn Welchman and Sara Hossain, ZED BOOKS, London, 2005.