Currently Women representation in these bodies is only 9 %
Chaudhary Birender Singh, Union Minister for Rural Development and Panchayati Raj has declared that soon Govt. will bring a legislation to reserve for Women 50 per cent seats in Rural and Urban Local Bodies.
This statement assumes significance as a Bill aimed to provide 33 per cent reservation in Lok Sabha and State Assemblies for women is struck since long in Parliament,
This Bill to Amend the Constitution, if passed, would mandate that a minimum half the seats in the Panchayati Raj System across rural India in all three tiers namely Gram Panchayats, Panchayat Samitis and Zilla Parishads — would have to be reserved for women candidates.
This would also be applicable urban local bodies like Municipal Corporations, Municipal Councils and Nagar Panchayats.
All these local bodies come under two Union Ministries namely Urban Development and Rural Developmen. A decision has been taken to introduce a legislation for both of them together,” said Singh.
As on date only one third seats are reserved for women. This was done in 1993 as per the 73rd and 74th Amendment Act of the Constitution of India. .
However States like Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jharkhand, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Tripura, Uttarakhand and West Bengal have already increased this quota for Women to 50 per.
But the NDA government is yet to tabled the Women’s Reservation Bill despite the fact that it was part of BJP’s election manifesto.
As of now, Women constitute only 12 per cent of the MPs in the Lok Sabha. Nationally this average of women legislators is a merely 9 per cent.