Last Update 19/09/2023 IST

The Women's Reservation Bill was introduced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a specially called session of Parliament. However, it has come to light that the government remained silent for nine months on the matter before the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court had prodded the Centre during the August hearing on a PIL demanding 33% reservation for women, saying, "Surprised you have not taken a stand."


Bill for Women's Reservation

The Lok Sabha, India's lower house of parliament, and all state legislative assemblies would reserve one-third of all seats for women under the **Women's Reservation Bill**, a bill that was approved by the Indian Parliament. The bill was introduced on March 9, 2010, and it proposed that the reserved seats would be decided by a draw of lots in such a way that a seat would be reserved only once in three consecutive general elections. The law was approved by the Rajya Sabha on March 9, 2010, but it was never put to a vote in the Lok Sabha, and it subsequently expired when the terms of the Lok Sabha in 2014 and 2019 were up.


There is a significant history behind the Women's Reservation Bill. A committee was established by Rajiv Gandhi's administration in 1987 to make suggestions for enhancing women's status. The 73rd and 74th Constitutional Amendment Acts, passed in 1992 by the administration of Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao, required 33.3 percent reservation for women in Panchayati Raj Institutions. The measure was first presented in the Lok Sabha on September 12, 1996, however it was abandoned after the 11th Lok Sabha was dissolved. On September 19, 2034, the bill was reintroduced during a special session of Parliament.


representation of women in Indian politics at present

There is interest and concern in the issue of women's representation in Indian politics. In India, women have served as president, prime minister, and chief ministers of several different states, but their overall participation in parliament is still low. The average percentage of females in national parliaments around the world as of May 2022 was 26.2%1. India, in contrast, is ranked 148th in terms of the proportion of women who serve in the executive branch and the Parliament. Only 64 of the 542 seats in the Lok Sabha are held by women, and 27 of the 542 seats in the Rajya Sabha are held by women.³. The American percentage is 25%, the European countries are 22.5%, and the Nordic countries are 43.5%.³.


It is significant to remember that the proportion of women in politics serves as an important barometer of the level of gender equality in parliamentary politics. There are initiatives underway to address this problem and encourage more women to participate in Indian politics.


measures to increase women's political engagement

Women's political participation must be encouraged if gender equality and inclusive governance are to be achieved. The following programs seek to promote and aid women's involvement in politics:


1. **Seats Reserving**: Many nations, including India, have put regulations in place to reserve a specific proportion of seats for women in local government elections. This strategy makes sure that women are given an equal opportunity to participate in decision-making.


2. **Financial Assistance**: By giving women candidates financial support, we can level the playing field and help them run successful campaigns.². This assistance may take the form of funding for campaign costs, educational opportunities, and mentorship relationships.


3. **Training Programs**: Political parties and groups frequently host training sessions created especially for female candidates. These initiatives give women the abilities, information, and self-assurance they need to succeed in the political sphere.


4. **Creating Forums**: Setting up forums or platforms where female politicians can talk about policy concerns, exchange stories, and advocate for their rights helps encourage a positive environment.


5. **Gender Quotas**: It has been demonstrated that implementing gender quotas for women in political posts will raise the provision of public services and improve women's representation.5. Quotas can support greater gender equality by addressing previous gender disparities.


6. **Awareness Campaigns**: Disrupting social norms and preconceptions can be accomplished by promoting the significance of women's involvement in politics through media campaigns, open forums, and educational efforts.


These programs are designed to remove obstacles and produce a political environment that is inclusive of all people and reflects the diversity of society. It is crucial to remember that progress might differ between nations and areas.


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