It will be more than two years after the Women's Reservation Bill is passed in Lok Sabha for it to be implemented because of the long subsequent legislative and other processes associated with it.
“It will take a minimum of two years. Just like the delimitation process... a commission or a committee it will take two to two-and-a-half years from now. The process is such,” Law Minister M. Veerappa Moily told PTI.
However, he expressed confidence that the reservation of seats and the identification of 181 of the 543 seats for women in the Lok Sabha would be in place “definitely” before the next Lok Sabha elections due in 2014.
Apart from reserving seats in the Lok Sabha, the Constitution Amendment Bill, which was passed by the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, seeks to provide reservation for women in 1,370 out of a total of 4,109 seats in 28 Assemblies.
The principle of reservation of seats for women will also apply to seats reserved for the SC/ST candidates.
The Bill provides for rotation of seats reserved for women every Lok Sabha at the end of the term.
Explaining the process, Mr. Moily said that once the Lok Sabha passed the Bill and the President signed it, it would be sent to all the States for ratification.
At least 14 of the 28 States would have to ratify the legislation for it to become a law. This process, Mr. Moily said, might take about nine months.
Once the States ratified the Bill, Mr. Moily said, the government would have to enact an ordinary legislation — something on the lines of a delimitation law for charting the roadmap of how to go about the process.
The Election Commission would be brought into the picture, and a commission constituted to go about the job of drawing the parameters for delineating the constituencies and earmarking them for women.