President Patil urges political parties to pass women's quota bill | delhi | Hindustan Times
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President Patil urges political parties to pass women's quota bill

delhi Updated: Mar 08, 2010 21:35 IST
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Unfazed by today's developments in Rajya Sabha, President Pratibha Patil said that it will be "graceful" if the Women's Reservation Bill is passed after consultation "as far as possible".

"Not at all", Patil said, when asked if she was disappointed with what happened today in the Upper House, adding that she was confident that it will go through.

"It would be graceful if it is passed by consultation... as far as possible, it (the passage) should be based on consultation," she said interacting with women journalists at Rashtrapati Bhawan on the occasion of International Women's Day.

The Rajya Sabha witnessed unruly scenes created by the MPs of SP, RJD and BSP as soon as Law Minister M Veerappa Moily moved the Bill which provides for 33 per cent reservation for women in Lok Sabha and state assemblies.

The President earlier in her address to the joint session of Parliament appealed to the political parties to facilitate the passage of the bill as the government was committed to it.

Describing as "initial teething problems" the contentions of many that the proposed reservation will promote relatives of politicians, Patil said with the passage of time, these things will sort out on their own, like in the case of Panchayati Raj.

Patil, however, said, reservation was not the answer. It will only facilitate the process of women's entry into politics.

The President called for a special focus on implementation of education programmes for women and the girl child as tools of empowerment.

"It should be scrupulously ensured that necessary incentives for the girl child to go to school are extended," she said. Patil said empowerment of women is crucial for the empowerment of the nation.

"With this belief, I had announced the setting up of the National Mission for Empowerment of Women... The launch of the Mission promises co-ordinated delivery of women-centric and women-related programmes of the Government," she said.

"The idea of a national mission was first mooted by the Committee of Governors set up to study and recommend a strategy for the speedy socio-economic development and empowerment of women," President Patil said.