The 18 year-journey of the Women’s Reservation Bill was marked by high drama and hit roadblocks in each of its outings in Parliament. Sadly enough, a number of male parliamentarians over the years have opposed the passing of the Bill, leaving it in its current state.
Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Monday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, asking him to ensure the passage of the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Monsoon Session of Parliament, which begins on Wednesday.
Our PM says he’s a crusader for women’s empowerment? Time for him to rise above party politics, walk-his-talk & have the Women’s Reservation Bill passed by Parliament. The Congress offers him its unconditional support.
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) July 16, 2018
In his letter, the Congress supremo offered his party’s unconditional support to the Bill and said the time had come for change, and for women to take their rightful place in State legislatures and Parliament.
In response to this letter, Ravi Shankar Prasad, current Union Minister holding Law and Justice and Electronics and Information Technology portfolio in the Government of India, wrote a letter to the Congress chief clearing the Governments stance on the Women’s Reservation Bill.
— BJP (@BJP4India) July 17, 2018
In this letter, Ravi Shankar Prasad reiterates that this Bill was originally proposed by the NDA Government headed by Atal Bihari Vajpayee, however, could not be passed due to wanting of consensus in the Parliament. Prasad went on to specify that when the Bill was reintroduced by the UPA, despite a lot of disturbance, the NDA, as well as the BJP, were in full support and had it passed in the Rajya Sabha, however, due to whatever reasons, best known to the existing Government of that time, (hinting at the Congress) it failed to be passed at the Lok Sabha, and lapsed subsequently.
Prasad went on to seek confirmation whether all the Congress allies and other parties in opposition would also extend support and not disrupt the House as in various previous situations when the Bill was brought to the Parliament. He wanted to understand as to why in the past three years the Bill was not taken up in the Lok Sabha by the UPA Government, who today headed by Rahul is showing an unusual interest in the Women Reservation Bill.
Interestingly Prasad in his letter pointed out that as national parties, they cannot play double standards when it comes to women rights, and both the parties should get into a ‘new deal’ in which they will unanimously approve and support the Women Reservation Bill, the law prohibiting Triple Talaq and imposing penal consequences on those violating the law, and also prohibiting Nikah Halala, in both Houses of the Parliament, as the latter two also treat women unequally and rips them off their dignity and self-esteem.
This proposal might just act as a game changer, leaving the Congress dumbfounded, unable to post further reactions may be, as not very long back Senior Congress leader cum lawyer Kapil Sibal, who is famous for his zero loss theory in the 2G scam, had given few bizarre arguments at the apex court while debating and supporting the Triple talaq issue.
The Congress has maintained shameful double-standards, fanning its minority appeasement theory trying to win the lost battle. From advocating the demand for Sharia courts, which is evidently the first step towards achieving a parallel state for Indian Muslims and finally another separate state for Indian Muslims, the second time in one hundred years, to supporting and defending heinous crimes like the practice of ‘Female Genital Mutilation’, which is one of the biggest jolts on a woman’s integrity and dignity.
Au contraire to the women empowerment card played frequently by the Congress, the party big-wigs are openly reported holidaying when an important Bill like Triple Talaq is being discussed in the Parliament, clearly displaying their casualness towards women and women empowerment in general.