During a speech on U.S.-India relations in New Dehli on Tuesday, President Obama said the two countries will only succeed if they empower women and the crowd of 1,500 lost their minds cheering like Beyoncé had just left the stage. Gen-der Equa-lity! Gen-der Equa-lity!
Amid uproarious applause, according to Reuters, Obama continued, adding that women are the key to both U.S. and Indian success moving forward.
"We know from experience that nations are more successful when their women are successful," said Obama, speaking at a meeting attended mainly by students and broadcast live on local news television stations.
"This is one of the most direct measures of whether a nation is going to develop effectively - how it treats its women. When a girl goes to school, it doesn't just open up her young mind, it benefits all of us," he said.
"Maybe some day she'll start her own business, or invent a new technology or cure a disease. And when women are able to work, families are healthier, communities are wealthier, and entire countries are more prosperous."
"If nations really want to succeed in today's global economy, they can't simply ignore the talents of half their people," he said to rapturous applause from around 2,000 people packed into a South Delhi auditorium.
He also touched on the collective safety of women in both the U.S. and India, as women in both countries fight for a number of issues from wage equality to feeling safe enough to take public transportation alone.
"And as husbands and fathers and brothers, we have to step up because every girl's life matters, every daughter deserves the same chance as our sons, every woman should be able to go about her day, to walk the streets, or ride the bus and be safe and be treated with respect and dignity. She deserves that."
Image via Getty.