With general elections just a few months away, Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Sunday renewed his demand for 33% women quota in Lok Sabha and state Assemblies. According to news agency ANU, Rahul has written a letter to Congress and its alliance governments in the states to pass a resolution in their respective assemblies seeking one-third reservation for women in the Lower House and Legislative Assemblies.
“In order to reaffirm our support for the passage of the Bill, it would be expedient for the state assembly to pass a resolution calling for the reservation of one-third of the seats in the Lok Sabha and legislative assemblies for women, in the next session,” Rahul said in a letter to Congress and its allied CMs.
Rahul also pointed out that India ranks 148 out of 193 countries in terms of the percentage of women in Parliament.
“The situation was even worse in state Assemblies,” he noted, adding that lack of adequate representation of women in “our polity undermines our democracy and perpetuates existing systemic injustices”.
“Women in institutions of local self-governance have not only been effective leaders but also challenged traditional gender roles that curtailed their participation in public life,” he said in his letter dated December 6.
Earlier in July, Rahul had written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to pass a bill promising 33% reservation for women in Lok Sabha. “I write to you to request your support to ensure the passage of the women’s reservation bill in the upcoming Monsoon session of Parliament,” he had written to PM Modi.
The Women’s Reservation Bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha in 2010 but lapsed after the dissolution of the 15th Lok Sabha after completion of its term in 2014.
Earlier on Thursday, BJP chief and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had written to all CMs seeking their support to ensure 33% reservation for women.