New Delhi, Sept 19: The Central government on Tuesday, September 19, introduced the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the parliament. The bill seeks to reserve one-third of seats in the Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies for women.
Calling himself “the chosen one for empowering and strengthening women”, Prime Minister Modi urged the five-day special session of Parliament – that met in the new building on Tuesday – to pass the Bill, dubbed by the government as the ‘Narishakti Vandan Adhiniyam’, unanimously.
The bill has been pending for over two decades, and has faced opposition from some political parties and social groups. However, in recent years, there has been growing support for the bill, and it is seen as a key step towards achieving gender equality in India.
If passed, the bill would increase the number of women in parliament and state legislatures, and give them a greater voice in decision-making.
Why is the Women’s Reservation Bill important?
Women are under-represented in Indian politics. Currently, only 11.7% of members of the Lok Sabha and 13.8% of members of state legislative assemblies are women.
The Women’s Reservation Bill would help to address this gender imbalance. It would ensure that women have a fair chance to represent their constituents and make their voices heard in parliament and state legislatures.
What are the arguments in favor of the Women’s Reservation Bill?
Supporters of the Women’s Reservation Bill argue that it is necessary to achieve gender equality in India. They point out that women are under-represented in all spheres of public life, including politics.
They also argue that the Women’s Reservation Bill would have a number of positive benefits.
What are the arguments against the Women’s Reservation Bill?
Opponents of the Women’s Reservation Bill argue that it is discriminatory and that it would lead to the election of unqualified women to parliament and state legislatures.
They also argue that the bill would benefit only educated and urban women, and that it would deprive disadvantaged rural women from so-called backward castes of their political rights.