Rajya Sabha’s leader of opposition Mallikarjun Kharge on Tuesday said the women’s reservation bill was already passed in 2010, this after the Centre tabled the legislation seeking 33 per cent reservation for women in Lok Sabha and legislative assemblies.
“They don’t give us credit but I want to bring to their notice that the Women Reservation Bill was already passed in 2010 but it was stopped”, Kharge said during his speech in the Rajya Sabha at the new Parliament building.
Kharge said political parties have a habit of choosing ‘weak’ women and they will not choose those who are educated and can fight, triggering opposition from the treasury benches.
Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman hit back at Kharge, saying,”We respect the leader of the opposition but to make a sweeping statement that all parties choose women who are not effective is absolutely unacceptable. We all have been empowered by our party, PM. President Droupadi Murmu is an empowered woman”.
Responding to Sitharaman, Kharge said, “Women from backward, ST don’t get such opportunities which they are getting, this is what we are saying”.
Earlier, Union law minister Arjun Ram Meghwal tabled the women’s reservation bill in the Lok Sabha. Hailing the legislation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi appealed to all Rajya Sabha members to unanimously approve the women’s reservation bill ‘Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam’ when it comes to the Upper House after being passed by Lok Sabha.”Today a bill has been introduced in the Lok Sabha. After discussion, it will come here also. Today we are taking an important step towards women empowerment”, he said.
The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Eighth Amendment) Bill, 2023, was listed for introduction in the Lower House through a supplementary list of business. The reservation will come into effect after a delimitation exercise is undertaken and will continue for 15 years. Seats reserved for women will be rotated after each delimitation exercise, according to the bill.