Ranchi: Jharkhand woman legislator Maneka Sardar is advocating that her party, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), give place to a woman in the state cabinet, but Chief Minister Arjun Munda says the list has already been finalised.
"We have told our party leaders that a woman should be made minister. Women should be given more space in politics," Sardar told IANS.
However, the BJP, which ruled the state for six years and is back in the saddle with Munda as the chief minister, does not seem ready to oblige yet. The party, which has never had a woman minister, advocates 33 percent reservation for women in parliament.
"We have already finalised the list of the probable ministers who will be inducted into the cabinet," Munda told reporters. He is slated to expand his cabinet Oct 8.
The BJP has three women legislators -- first-timer Vimla Pradhan, second-timer Kunti Singh and Sardar, who has entered the assembly for the third time.
As for other parties, they too have a dismal record of including women in the political mainstream. The Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) has 18 legislators but only one woman -- JMM chief Shibu Soren`s daughter-in-law Sita Soren.
Sita Soren has expressed her willngness to become a minister in the BJP-led government. However, from the Soren family, Hemant Soren has already ben made one of the two deputy chief minister.
The All Jharkhand Students Union (AJSU) has five legislators, all men. Of the Janata Dal-United`s (JD-U) two legislators, one is a woman.
There are eight women in the 81-member assembly.