Women’s groups in India upset with delay in passing quota Bill

Hoping for the early passage of the long-pending Women’s Reservation Bill, women’s groups have expressed concern over the delay in submitting recommendations by the Parliamentary Standing Committee.

“It is necessary to overcome all possible impediments that may arise to sabotage the Bill, a joint press statement issued by women’s organisations said here on Thursday while asking the United Progressive Alliance government to display the political will to ensure passage of this Bill — stipulating 33 per cent reservation for women in legislative bodies — without further delay.

Pointing out that the women had welcomed the assurance given by President Pratibha Patil during the joint session of Parliament regarding the passage of the Bill within 100 days of assuming office, these organisations said: “We note with disappointment that the business items listed for the Budget session carries no mention of the Bill.”

The assurance given by the President on the floor of the House had already been belied, they said.

The signatories to the statement are the All India Democratic Women’s Association, the All India Women’s Conference, the Centre for Women’s Development Studies, the Joint Women’s Programme, the Guild of Service, the All India Dalit Mahila Adhikar Manch, the National Federation of Indian Women, the Muslim Women’s Forum and the Young Women’s Christian Association.

Meanwhile, the All-India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA) has also condemned the steep rise in prices of petrol and diesel announced by the government on the eve of the budget session.

“It is a mockery of democracy and an insult to the highest elected body of people’s representatives. This has come as a blow to the common people who are already reeling under the severity of sky-rocketing prices of food grains, dals, oil, milk and vegetables. This measure is bound to further trigger escalation in prices of essential commodities,” a statement by the Association said here.

The poor women would be the worst hit, it said.



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