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Green signal to quota for women

Euphoric women leaders rush to the stage to felicitate the leaders, all who are men, barring Sushma Swaraj. Shekhar Iyer reports.

india Updated: Jan 29, 2008 01:34 IST
Shekhar Iyer

“Bharat mata ki jai”, rose petals and garlands greeted L.K. Advani and Rajnath Singh when they announced that the BJP would reserve one-third posts for women. Euphoric women leaders rushed to the stage to felicitate the leaders, all who are men, barring Sushma Swaraj.

The BJP national council adopted the change, amid silent misgivings among the male members, mooted by a Swaraj-led panel without any
discussion, as Advani had wanted.

The change means the 81-member BJP national executive will have 27 women leaders compared to the present 13. The women’s cell chief will now be a member of the party’s central election committee while state presidents will be part of their respective state election committees.

“This will be implemented in three-months time from now. Except for the BJP parliamentary board, all BJP bodies, including the national executive, will have quota for women,” Swaraj said.

The quota, however, will not cover in the distribution of BJP ticket for parliamentary and assembly polls though the party has sought a law — as proposed by the Election Commission — to make it mandatory for all parties to give one-third of tickets to women.