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12 BJD MP-Elects Meet Naveen
12 BJD MP-Elects Meet Naveen

Rahul’s 33% Govt Job Reservation Promise For Women: How Practical Is It?


14 March 2019

Debashish Maharana


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Bhubaneswar: As it is the season of general elections and all the political parties are up with their respective all-out efforts for wooing the votes of women as they constitute fifty percent of the total population, Congress president Rahul Gandhi yesterday promised that his party-led United Progressive Alleinace (UPA) would reserve 33 per cent government jobs for women if voted to power.

Interacting with students of Chennai-based Stella Maris College for Women, Rahul on Wednesday (March 13) also assured that the UPA will reserve 33 per cent government jobs for women and pass the Women's Reservation Bill giving 33 per cent of seats in the Lok Sabha if it wins the Lok Sabha battle.

When the much sought-after Women's Reservation Bill is pending in Parliament since the UPA-II regime as the allies of Congress ironically stalled its passage in the Lok Sabha, doubt is obviously being cast now on the materialization of Rahul’s yet another promise of reserving 33 per cent government jobs for women.

OMMCOM NEWS tried to dissect and delve into it in a bid to find out how far it would be a cakewalk for Congress to fulfill or it would be an uphill task and a sheer political hogwash.

In his reactions, senior journalist and political expert Rabi Das said, “Making such statement has no problem. Recently, the Central Government has increased 10% reservation after making a constitutional amendment. It is for those who are deprived of reservation facility and mainly for the upper caste poor candidates.”

He argued, “If the 33% job reservation for the women assured by Rahul Gandhi is adjusted in the existing reservation for Dalits (SC) and Adivasis (STs), there is no problem. Similarly in the case of the OBCs, it is possible. Even in the general category reservation, that 33% reservation for women can also be done.”

He further argued, “I think there will be no constitutional hurdles because all women to be treated equally. Hence, there will be no problem. There have been many sectors where women reservation has been effected. For instances, police force, paramilitary, Army. Gradually, reservation for the women is being increased.”

“However, the infrastructure of Congress party is weak. There is no problem in the slogan, but the party lacks infrastructure for the proper dissemination to public,” the senior scribe commented.

Another senior journalist and political analyst Prasant Pattnaik stated, “There is no constitutional bar for the reservation meant for women in the government jobs. But the implementation of the poll promise by any political party after coming to power is more important.”

He explained, “There is no constitutional bar in making such promises. If there is any constitutional bar, the promise can’t be kept. The Supreme Court’s ruling on reservation is that of not exceeding a particular limit.”

“At the present juncture, the farmers and women are on focus in the entire country. However, it all depends on keeping the promise after coming to power and its implementation. Also depends on the constitutional hindrance,” the senior scribe remarked.

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Rabi Das, Senior Journalist

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Prasant Pattnaik, Senior Journalist