Amidst growing speculation regarding the Women's Reservation Bill, Congress President and Leader of the Opposition (LoP) in the Rajya Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, has spoken out on the need to prioritize and implement the long-pending legislation
Amidst growing speculation regarding the Women's Reservation Bill, Congress President and Leader of the Opposition (LoP) in the Rajya Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge, has spoken out on the need to prioritize and implement the long-pending legislation.
Speaking to ANI, Kharge reminisced about past efforts, stating, "In 2010, we had passed the Bill in the Rajya Sabha. But it failed to be passed by the Lok Sabha. That is why, this is not a new Bill. Had they taken that Bill forward, it would have been done quickly by this day."
Kharge expressed skepticism about the timing and intentions behind recent discussions on the Women's Reservation Bill, suggesting that political motives might be at play. He remarked, "I feel that they are publicizing this in view of elections, but actually unless the delimitation or census takes place... you can feel how long it is going to take. They could have continued with the earlier one, but their intentions are something else."
Despite his reservations, Kharge reiterated the Congress's commitment to the cause of women's reservation and emphasized the need to address the potential shortcomings in the proposed legislation. He affirmed, "But we will insist that women's reservation has to be brought, and we will fully cooperate. But the loopholes and drawbacks should be rectified."
The Women's Reservation Bill, which seeks to reserve one-third of the seats in the Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assemblies for women, has been a topic of discussion and debate in Indian politics for many years. Its passage has been hindered by various challenges and political considerations.
Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday said that the Congress was never serious about providing reservation to women in the Lok Sabha and state assemblies. The statement came after the government introduced a bill in this regard in the Lower House of Parliament.
The government introduced a constitutional amendment bill to reserve one-third of seats in the Lok Sabha and state assemblies for women, reviving the concept of women's reservation pending for 27 years for want of consensus among parties.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah said the introduction of the bill in the Lok Sabha shows the "unwavering commitment" of the Narendra Modi government to empower women.
"Sadly, the opposition is unable to digest this. And, what is more shameful is that except tokenism, the Congress has never been serious about women's reservation," he posted on X. (Agencies)