Despite government declaring it as a "top priority", the Women's Reservation Bill is unlikely to come up in the Budget session of Parliament beginning on Thursday.
This has become clear as the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Law and Justice, to which the bill was sent for scrutiny, has not yet been reconstituted.
The Bill will have to be referred to the new Committee for scrutiny and it could take a week to constitute the panel.
Though the previous committee headed by senior Congress MP E M Sudarshana Natchiappan has done most of the groundwork, the new committee may like to scrutinise the bill once again, leading to some delay, Parliament sources said.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had only yesterday held consultations with the top brass of Congress including party chief Sonia Gandhi on evolving a consensus on the Bill.
The long pending controversial bill is on "top" of government agenda to be made into "reality", Law Minister Veerappa Moily said soon after the issue figured in the President's address to the joint sitting of Parliament.
In her address to both the Houses of Parliament, the President had mentioned bringing a legislation to reserve 33 per cent of seats for women in Parliament and the state assemblies.
The Bill has remained stalled due to resistance from some parties, which are opposed to it in its present form and want quota within quota.