Parliamentary panel hears pleas on Women’s bill

June 4th, 2008 - 12:38 am ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 3 (IANS) The parliamentary committee dealing with the Women’s Reservation Bill seeking 33 percent reservation for women in the parliament and state assemblies met Tuesday to hear representations from women’s group. “We deposed before the committee and gave our suggestions on the Women’s Reservation Bill,” said Annie Raja, general secretary, National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW).

“We reiterated our stand that there should be 33 percent reservation for women. On the issue of reservation within reservation for Other Backward Classes (OBC) women, we said we are not against it,” Raja said.

“On the issue of rotation of constituencies for reservation of seats, our stand is neutral. We feel that the argument of an MP not nurturing his constituency as he may not contest from there (if it gets reserved) is in some ways undemocratic as one should not nurture a constituency with the next polls in mind,” she said.

NFIW also told the committee that the provision of reserving seats for women only for 15 years should be looked into. “After 15 years, a review should be done to check whether the women are empowered enough and then a decision should be taken accordingly,” she said.

The women’s reservation bill was tabled in the Lok Sabha during the last budget session in May amidst uproarious scenes as MPs from the Samajwadi Party tried to snatch copies of the bill and disrupted proceedings of the house.

The Left parties, the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress support the bill.

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