Civil society groups working for women's rights on Thursday urged the MPs to keep the issue of the women's reservation bill alive in parliament and push for its speedy passage.
Ranjana Kumari, director of Women Power Connect, while welcoming the increase in women's numbers at 'panchayat' (village council) level, said the bill for 33 percent reservation for women in parliament must be passed and should be a priority for all parliamentarians.
"Women’s representation has been a matter of concern and action for the women’s movement in India for nearly three decades now. We want a commitment from the government this time and urge parliamentarians to keep our issues alive in the house,” Kumari said.
“There is a pressing need to enhance women’s representation in parliament and the state assemblies and so this issue is of utmost importance,” she added.
Girija Vyas, Lok Sabha member, said: “Politics is no longer about muscle and power alone. The representation of women at the panchayat level has crossed over 40 percent in some states and the recent increase in the number of women entering parliament also indicates that women cannot be restrained from joining active politics.”
“We are hopeful that the women’s reservation bill will get a passage this time as it is being supported by the president, the speaker and several other leaders,” Vyas, who is also heads the National Commission for Women, said.
Lending his voice of support, Madhu Goud Yakshi, also a Lok Sabha member, said he hopes that the pending bill will see the light of the day soon.
Reiterating that they will not give up until the bill is passed, Yukti Sharma, an activist, said: “We will continue to raise the issue for equal rights in politics until the bill is passed."