Women`s quota bill unlikely in Lok Sabha this session

The government is unlikely to move the women`s reservation bill in the Lok Sabha during the few remaining days of the budget session before parliament goes into recess around May 7, Congress sources said.

Last Updated: May 02, 2010, 20:51 PM IST

New Delhi: The government is unlikely to move the women`s reservation bill in the Lok Sabha during the few remaining days of the budget session before parliament goes into recess around May 7, Congress sources said.

They said the government had told political parties during its consultation with them on the bill last month that it would conduct another round of talks before moving the draft legislation.

"Only a week is left for the budget session to conclude. I don`t think we have time to complete the process of consultation and passage of the bill," a Congress leader told IANS.

The bill, which seeks to provide 33 percent reservation to women in the Lok Savha and state assemblies, has been passed by the Rajya Sabha.

The Samajwadi Party (SP), the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and sections of the Janta Dal-United (JD-U) are opposed to the bill and are seeking sub-quota for backward classes, Dalits and minorities within the overall 33 percent reservation for women.

The bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha after marshals were used to remove seven members who stayed put even after they were suspended from the house for unruly behaviour.

The parties opposed to the bill as also some of those who supported the bill in the Rajya Sabha told the government that they would not allow the bill to be passed in the lower house in presence of marshals.

The government convened a meeting with leaders of various parties in the Lok Sabha April 5 in a bid to sort out differences over the contentious bill. However, there was no significant change in the stated positions of various parties.

The government decided to give precedence to the financial agenda of the government in the second half of the budget session.

Some of the parties opposed to the bill took a stand that benefited the government during voting on the cut motions in the Lok Sabha. While the SP and RJD staged a walk out, the BSP voted for the government during the voting on the cut motions.

Congress sources said the government may not jeopardise its relations with the SP and the RJD at this stage by pressing for the bill the two parties do not agree with.

IANS