Union Home Minister Amit Shah said on Wednesday that unlike the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), other parties see women’s empowerment as a “political issue and a tool for vote bank politics”. During the discussion over the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha, Shah further said that for the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, women’s empowerment is an issue of “principles and beliefs.”
“For some parties, the issue of women empowerment can be a political agenda or a slogan to win elections. However, for my party and my leader Narendra Modi, women empowerment is not a political issue, but it is a matter of principles and beliefs,” Shah said. He further said that yesterday will be marked in history.
“Yesterday was Ganesh Chaturthi, it was the inauguration of the new Parliament and we introduced the Women’s Reservation Bill in Parliament,” he added. “The Women’s Reservation Bill is a mark of respect and the beginning of a new era,” the Minister added.
He added that Prime Minister Modi presented a vision of women-led progress at the recently concluded G-20 session. Notably, Day 3 of the Parliament special session witnessed a debate on the women’s reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha, while the Rajya Sabha discussed India’s space journey focusing on Chandrayaan-3’s successful soft landing on the moon.
The Women’s Reservation Bill that seeks to provide a 33 per cent quota for women in Lok Sabha and state assemblies was introduced in the Lok Sabha today in the ongoing special session of Parliament and will be taken up for discussion on Wednesday when the House will meet at 11 am. The Union Cabinet on Monday approved the Women Reservation Bill.
On Tuesday, Union Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal introduced the bill in the first sitting of Lok Sabha in the new Parliament building. The bill has been named ‘Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam’. In 2008, the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government tabled the Bill in the Rajya Sabha, and it was passed in 2010. However, the Bill was never taken up for consideration in the Lok Sabha.
The Bill will be taken up in Rajya Sabha on September 21 government sources said. The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty-Eighth Amendment) Bill, 2023, seeks to introduce three new articles and one new clause in the Constitution.
However, prior to Shah, Congress MP from Wayanad Rahul Gandhi alleged that the BJP was trying to distract people from the caste census and the Adani issue. “Every time the Opposition raises the issue of caste census, the BJP tries to create a distraction, or to a new event so that the OBC community and the people of India look the other way,” he said while slamming the Centre for employing diversionary tactics.
Gandhi further asked the government to release the data of the Caste census done by us or “we will release it”. Rahul Gandhi also said that the caste census is the only way to ensure representation for OBCs. He said that despite forming a huge chunk of the population, they control and define only 5 per cent of India’s budget. “This is an insult and a shame to the OBC community,” he added.