Women’s Reservation Bill to come into force after 2024 census: FM Nirmala Sitharaman

She was speaking after releasing a commemorative postal stamp in the name of Rani Abbakka at Moodbidri in Dakshina Kannada district.

BySouth First Desk

Published Dec 16, 2023 | 2:43 PMUpdatedDec 16, 2023 | 2:43 PM

Women's reservation bill: Nirmala Sitharaman

The Union government will initiate steps to enforce the Women’s Reservation Bill after the 2024 census, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has said.

Speaking after releasing a commemorative postal stamp in the name of Rani Abbakka at Moodbidri in Dakshina Kannada district on Friday, 15 December, Sitharaman said that the Women’s Reservation Bill became a reality as Prime Minister Narendra Modi has always believed in the role of women in nation building.

Sitharaman at commemorative stamp release

Lauding the courage and heroics of Rani Abbakka, the 16th century queen of Ullal who fought against the Portuguese, Sitharaman said that the Union government has taken steps to document the contributions of many unknown fighters who fought against imperial forces.

As part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, the government has compiled a digital district repository with 14,500 stories, highlighting places linked with the freedom struggle, she said.

The Union Ministry of Culture has also tied up with Amar Chitra Katha to bring out three books on the role of women in freedom struggle, women in the constituent assembly and tribal leaders of freedom struggle.

The Finance Minister expressed the hope that a Sanik School would be opened in the name of Rani Abbakka in coastal Karnataka. She congratulated artist Vasudev Kamath for the portrait of Rani Abbakka, used for the commemorative postal stamp.

Sri Kshetra Dharmastala Dharmadhikari (hereditary administrator) Veerendra Heggade and chief post master general (Karnataka Circle) S Rajendra Kumar were present.

Also Read: Lok Sabha passes Women’s Reservation Bill

Women’s Reservation Bill

A long-standing aspiration of half the nation’s population for one-third representation in Parliament and state Assemblies got a stamp of approval from Lok Sabha in September 2023.

After 77 years of India gaining Independence and 13 years after the Women’s Reservation Bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha, a new version of the Bill was passed in the lower house, albeit without a fixed timeline for its implementation.

On Wednesday, 20 September, the Lok Sabha passed the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam with an overwhelming majority of 454-2.

Remarkably, all political parties — with the exception of the AIMIM — supported the Bill: Both opposing votes came from AIMIM MPs.

The Bill mandates the allocation of 33 percent of seats to women in both the Lok Sabha and state Assemblies.

(With PTI inputs.)