Kavitha said, “If India needs to develop, women should play a key role in politics. For which, it is important to bring this bill which is pending for last 27 years.”
The protest at Jantar Mantar was inaugurated by CPI-M leader Sitaram Yechury.
“Our party will extend support to Kavitha in this protest till the bill is passed. It is important to bring this bill to give equal opportunity to women in politics,” Yechury said in his inaugural address.
Overtures to Congress?
BRS leader Kavitha also reached out to Congress to join her protest in Delhi in support of the Bill.
The move is politically significant as KCR has kept the Congress at an arm’s length for the past four years.
With Kavitha’s outreach tinged with praise for Sonia Gandhi, this is the first time that a leader from KCR’s inner circle has approached Congress to join her protest.
KCR started speaking in 2019 on the need to bring opposition parties under one umbrella to dethrone BJP at the Centre, all the while saying that both Congress and BJP had failed the country.
From Nitish Kumar to MK Stalin to Mamata Banerjee and Uddhav Thackeray, the Telangana CM has met politicians of every hue to build a coalition ahead of the 2024 elections, but avoided Congress functionaries until now.
Kavitha to appear before ED on March 11
The BRS leader on Thursday said the hunger strike was planned a week before but the ED summoned her to depose before it on March 9, just a day before the planned agitation.
The agency later agreed to her request to appear on March 11 after the agitation.
Historic opportunity to get Bill passed: Kavitha
Earlier on Thursday she said the bill has been lying in cold storage since 2010 and the Modi government has a historic opportunity to get it passed in Parliament before 2024.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised in both 2014 and 2019 Lok Sabha polls that his government would bring this bill and that it was also part of the BJP’s election manifesto.
None of the BJP leaders raised this issue and the Modi government has failed to get this bill passed in Parliament despite having a majority, she added.
History of Women’s Reservation Bill
The bill seeks to reserve 33 per cent seats in Lok Sabha and all state legislative assemblies for women. It was initially introduced in Lok Sabha on September 12, 1996 by the United Front government.
The Vajpayee government pushed for the bill in Lok Sabha but it still wasn’t passed.
However, the UPA-I government, led by Congress, again introduced it in May 2008 and was passed in the Rajya Sabha and was later eferred to a standing committee.
In 2010, it was passed in the House and sent finally to the Lok Sabha. However, the bill lapsed with the 15th Lok Sabha.
(With inputs from agencies)