A day after the Constitution (128th Amendment) Bill, to reserve 33% seats in the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies was cleared by both Houses of Parliament, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the Bill presaged a new “democratic commitment” in India made possible because of a “strong decisive government with a full majority at the Centre.”
He was addressing a felicitation ceremony organised by the BJP’s Mahila Morcha or women’s wing, attended by party president J.P. Nadda as well.
During his speech, Prime Minister Modi also made a pitch for having a strong government with a majority, stating that it was one of main reasons for Bill to get pushed through so many years after it was first tabled.
“Having reservation for women in the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies was talked about for nearly three decades”, he noted, adding that the earlier efforts lacked commitment and women were even insulted.
Asserting that his government worked to empower women, who have emerged as a power over the last one decade, Mr. Modi said that is was the reason why political parties that used to earlier tear copies of the women’s reservation bill in Parliament had to support it. This was a reference to parties, such as the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and Samajwadi Party (SP) who had in previous years opposed the Women’s Reservation Bill over their demand that quotas for OBC women be part of the larger quota for women.
Prime Minister Modi termed it the “good fortune” of BJP and a government headed by the party that it got the opportunity to pass the bill.
“Some decisions have the power to change a country’s fate,” he said, describing the proposed law as one such measure.
AThe women’s reservation Bill, he said was proof of fulfilling “Modi’s guarantee” of ushering in women-led development.
Citing a number of his government’s schemes and decisions for women’s welfare, Mr. Modi said it has made every attempt to unshackle them with programmes for their security, respect and prosperity.