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Women MPs of Congress meet PM, press for passage of Reser Bill

Women MPs of Congress today met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to press for the passage of Women's Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha in the current session of Parliament

delhi Updated: Aug 19, 2010 23:01 IST

Women MPs of Congress on Thursday met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to press for the passage of Women's Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha in the current session of Parliament.

"We all women parliamentarians of Congress party are looking upon you and request that the Women's Reservation Bill should be presented and passed in the current session of Parliament so that the dream of our beloved leader late Rajiv Gandhi for participation of women in politics from panchayats to Parliament is fulfilled," the women MPs said in a memorandum submitted to the Prime Minister.

The Prime Minister is learnt to have told them that he is committed to passing the Bill as soon as possible but did not give any deadline.

The women delegation was led by All India Mahila Congress Committee President Prabha Thakur. Chairman of National Commission for Women Girija Vyas and other party MPs Mohsina Kidwai, Meenakshi Natarajan, Jyoti Mirdha, Mausam Noor, Santosh Choudhary, Jayanthi Natarajan and Ratna Singh were also part of the delegation that met the Prime Minister.

The Bill that seeks to provide 33 percent reservation for women in Lok Sabha and state assemblies was passed by the Rajya Sabha on March 9 this year amid vociferous protests from members of RJD, SP and JD-U.

The MPs thanked the Prime Minister and Congress President Sonia Gandhi for the "historical decision" of passing the bill in Rajya Sabha adding the women of the country have great expectations from both.

The memorandum also took a swipe at the opponents of the Bill saying a "few leaders of some parties may not agree to the present status of the Bill....this opposition is only for personal benefit."

The memorandum said those opposing the Bill had never requested for reservation for OBCs and minorities (women) but when this Bill was presented they have begun asking for quota within 33 per cent reservation for women as envisaged in the Bill.

"If till now, after all your efforts, the opposing parties have not given their consent for the Bill, it is only to stop the Bill from being passed. Otherwise, there is always a possibility of amendments in the Bill in future according to the Constitution," it added.

The women MPs urged the Prime Minister to "think deeply" about their appeal and present the Bill before Lok Sabha for passage in this session.

First Published: Aug 19, 2010 22:58 IST