Congress will push for private sector reservation, quota in Women’s Bill

The political push for reservation in the private sector has already led to major debates and during the ten years of the Congress-led UPA government, no such effort to implement quota in private sector jobs was mooted.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi speaks during a meeting on the second day of the party’s Nav Sankalp Chintan Shivir, as Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi looks on, in Udaipur on Saturday. (ANI PHOTO.)
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi speaks during a meeting on the second day of the party’s Nav Sankalp Chintan Shivir, as Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi looks on, in Udaipur on Saturday. (ANI PHOTO.)
Updated on May 14, 2022 07:18 PM IST
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New Delhi: In a major policy shift, the Congress party on Saturday demanded reservation in the private sector and advocated ‘quota within quota’ in the Women’s Reservation Bill that is pending for passage since 2010.

Congress leaders Salman Khurshid and K Raju said today that the panel on social justice will recommend to the Congress Working Committee to reserve 50% seats at all levels within the organization and push for quota in the private sector.

Khurshid, a former Union minister, argued, “This government is selling off public sector companies diluting the reservation for jobs in government entities. Therefore, we are seeking quota in the private sector to protect the interests of the weaker section.”

The political push for reservation in the private sector has already led to major debates and during the ten years of the Congress-led UPA government, no such effort to implement quota in private sector jobs was mooted.

Any policy in that direction will require amendments in the central laws but the ruling BJP has not spelled out any categorical stand on the issue so far.

In another key policy change, the Congress panel on social justice on Saturday pushed for quota within quota in the Women’s Reservation Bill, years after it resisted such demands when the bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha in 2010. Regional parties such as the RJD (an UPA ally), Nitish Kumar’s JDU and Mulayam Singh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party were in favour of quota within quota, but their demand was not met.

Quota within quota will entail further reservation of seats for women of the weaker sections within the overall one-third quota for women lawmakers in Lok Sabha and state assemblies.

Khurshid claimed that the decision to not include quota within quota in the Women’s Reservation Bill was a “tactical move” and “the idea was to first pass the Women’s Reservation law and then think about the share for the weaker sections.”

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Wednesday, May 18, 2022