Before thinking about equality, the Indian parliament agreed to reserve a third of its seats for women

India is indeed a country that allowed a woman, Indira Gandhi, to assume the post of Prime Minister in 1966. However, it took almost 30 years, in 1996, for the first law to require the reservation of, not half, but at least a third of the deputy seats. Woman. And wait another 27 years until the law was finally adopted by the deputies (454 votes in favor and two against).

However, the decisions taken on Wednesday in the lower house of the Indian Parliament have an impact primarily in the country where they are located the position of women in Indian political life is in vain : of the 788 deputies in the country, 104 are women, or more than 13%.

Sensitive things

At least two years to implement the policy

On the other hand, the establishment of these quotas will take time to be implemented in practice: after the passage of the bill in the upper house of parliament, which has a high chance of being adopted, we will at least have to wait. two or three years, according to some observers, from the end of a massive census operation in what is still the world’s second-largest democracy (1.4 billion people), to then redraw India’s electoral districts.

Immediate implementation of this bill is not only necessary but also possible“, underlined the representative of the main opposition party Sonia Gandhi, during the debate on the hemicycle, any delay in its implementation is an injustice to women.”

Since 1996, when it was first introduced, the bill has faced considerable opposition from political parties in the north of the country: in 2010, the former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, for example, opposed the draft law. worried this would encourage MPs to whistle blows at their colleagues in Parliament.

Weightless political representation

Paradoxically, while women are already represented on India’s political scene, they do not have much influence in decision-making: Droupadi Murmu is currently the country’s president and the second person in India’s history to occupy this, essentially protocol, function. Other women have been chief ministers, party leaders, and held power, without women benefiting from wider political representation.

Therefore, implementation of this law will benefit Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will seek a third term in office next year, and his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP): the party already enjoys significant popularity among women.

Serena Hoyles

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