Washington: A bill to reserve one-third of the seats in the Lower House of India’s Parliament and state assemblies for women is a transformative piece of legislation and a push for gender parity and egalitarianism, the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF) has said.
In a statement issued on Friday, USISPF president Mukesh Aghi also underlined the importance of having more women at the top of decision-making bodies in the world’s largest democracy.
The watershed bill received the Parliamentary nod on Thursday as Rajya Sabha voted unanimously in favour of it.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi thanked the MPs for supporting the legislation and said once more women assume leadership roles and join the nation-building process, they will become a guarantee of the country’s bright future.
Aghi said, “This is a major step by the Indian government and the honourable Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi in achieving gender equality and increased representation.”
India was one of the first countries in the world to have a woman prime minister and has had two women presidents, he noted.
“In the world’s largest democracy and now the most populous nation in the world, it behoves to have more women in the highest echelons of decision-making bodies. This bill is a transformative piece of legislation and is a push for gender parity and egalitarianism,” he added.
At present, women make up for nearly half of India’s 95 crore registered voters but account for only 15 per cent of lawmakers in Parliament and 10 per cent in the state assemblies.