WOMEN’S RESER­VA­TION BILL IN THE LIME­LIGHT

Woman's Era - - Classifieds - The prize is awarded to: Shanoor K. Mirza, Nag­pur.

It is a good au­gury that the once let- down Women's Reser­va­tion Bill which seeks to re­serve one-third of seats in the Lok Sabha and State Assem­blies for women again came to the fore for re­con­sid­er­a­tion at the high­est po­lit­i­cal ech­e­lons. This has been the case after the Congress Pres­i­dent So­nia Gandhi wrote to Prime Min­is­ter Naren­dra Modi on 20th Septem­ber, urg­ing him to get the Women's Reser­va­tion Bill passed in the Lok Sabha.

The bill which also seeks to re­serve one-third of seats for women be­long­ing to SC & ST cat­e­gories, pro­vides an al­lo­ca­tion by ro­ta­tion to

Woman’s Era Oc­to­ber (Sec­ond) 2017 dif­fer­ent con­stituen­cies in the State or Union Ter­ri­tory. How­ever, reser­va­tion for women shall cease to ex­ist in 15 years after the com­mence­ment of this Amend­ment Act.

There are di­ver­gent opin­ions on this is­sue of women's reser­va­tion, in the wake of some op­po­nents stress­ing the ne­ces­sity of af­fir­ma­tive ac­tion to im­prove the con­di­tion of women vis- a- vis em­pow­er­ing them so­cially, eco­nom­i­cally and po­lit­i­cally with a new im­pe­tus. The move has also been con­sid­ered as a set­back in its pol­icy that di­verts at­ten­tion from the larger is­sues of elec­toral re­form such as crim­i­nal­i­sa­tion of pol­i­tics and in­ner-party democ­racy.

This might also pave the way for re­strict­ing the choice of vot­ers to women can­di­dates much against their wishes and re­duce the in­cen­tive for an MP to work for his con­stit - uency as he may be in­el­i­gi­ble to seek re­elec­tion from that con­stituency wherein there is dual com­pe­ti­tion be­tween a woman and a male can­di­date.

Hence, in all even­tu­al­ity, the present BJP gov­ern­ment un­der Modi's dis­pen­sa­tion must re­view the pros and cons of pass­ing the women's reser­va­tion bill in the Lok Sabha. – Bh. Indu Sekhar, Hy­der­abad.

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