At a function for a women's self-help initiative 'Umeed' in Badgam town, Gandhi said women have to play a vital role in running the country.
Their empowerment and participation in democratic institutions should happen not only through reservation, but as a matter of principle.
"You have a vital role to play in the development of the state and the country. Women's empowerment is important for the development of Jammu and Kashmir and the country," the Congress leader said.
Women from various parts of the state who have benefited from the 'Umeed' initiative interacted with Gandhi and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.
Many participants narrated their experiences about how the initiative benefitted them and helped them play more contributory roles in their families.
Meanwhile, women from north Kashmir's Ganderbal assembly constituency, which is represented by Abdullah in the state assembly, complained to Gandhi that he has visited Badgam district twice, but hasn't visited Ganderbal yet.
Gandhi assured them that he would be visiting Ganderbal in the coming days.
The Congress leader was accompanied by party general secretary Ambika Soni and state Congress president Saif-ud-Din Soz.
Gandhi also inaugurated a 5,000-tonne controlled atmosphere fruit storage facility in Lassipora village in Pulwama district.