Sonia sees ploy in delaying Women's Bill

Govt rules out any dilution in reservation

Sonia sees ploy in delaying Women's Bill

“Those who are demanding quota within quota are in fact trying to delay the passage of the bill in Parliament,” she told journalists, reacting to the demand by the Yadav triumvirate  of the Hindi heartland that the Women’s Reservation Bill should have provisions for quotas for women from the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, OBCs and religious minority communities.

Govt to seek consensus

The United Progressive Alliance  chairperson said that the Congress-led ruling coalition would try to build a political consensus on the Women’s Reservation Bill.

Sharad Yadav of the Janata Dal (United), Mulayam Singh Yadav of Samajwadi Party (SP) and Lalu Prasad Yadav of Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) have threatened to launch a nationwide agitation if the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government tried to get the bill passed without the quota within quota. The Samajwadi Party supremo, however, had hinted that his party might consider supporting the bill if the percentage of reservation was scaled down from the proposed 33 per cent to 20 per cent.

But the government on Wednesday ruled out any dilution in the controversial bill, which seeks to reserve 33 per cent seats for women in Lok Sabha and State Assemblies.
“There is no question of dilution. It is hypothetical,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister P K Bansal told journalists, when he was asked if the government might scale down the percentage of reservation.

He said the government would try to arrive at a consensus on every aspect of the legislation.

President Pratibha Patil had in her address to the joint sitting of Parliament informed that the Women’s Reservation Bill was one of the priority agendas of the new UPA government.

“The Bill is now before the standing committee of Parliament which is soon to be reconstituted and the government would await its report,” said Bansal.

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