Beyond quota

The article “Empowering women: going beyond quota” (Open Page, March 14) is well written. All political parties opposing the Women's Bill should explain why they do not allot more seats to women during elections. What prevents them from fielding OBC women to demonstrate their commitment to their empowerment?

R. Sharadha,


It seems the larger implications of reserving one-third of the total number of seats have not yet sunk in. On the face of it, the Bill gives the impression of challenging male supremacy in politics. But things need to be placed in a different perspective.

The increase in women's participation will only allow them to confront issues in a limited sphere within the larger political territory which will remain under the control of men. The Bill excludes the OBCs and the oppressed women. Patriarchal domination will remain intact because reservation will lead to an increase in the number of daughters and daughters-in-law from politically powerful families in the legislature.

Ipshita Mitra,

New Delhi

Do we really need reservation for women in the legislature? The President, the Speaker and the leader of the ruling coalition are all women. Furthermore, women have occupied the highest posts in not only India but also Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh. We have had, and have, women Chief Ministers.

In fact, by providing political reservation for women we are underestimating their ability to go beyond the kitchen. Women who have already proved their mettle should oppose reservation that mocks at their potential. Otherwise, a time may come when men start demanding reservation.

S.R. Devaprakash,