PANAJI: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Mahila Morcha national president Vijaya Rahatkar on Wednesday said that party was in support of Women Reservation Bill and wanted it to be passed in the Rajya Sabha as well.
Addressing a press conference at the party office in the city, Rahatkar said, "Bharatiya Janata Party has always been in support of Women Reservation Bill. It is only BJP which want women reservation. Women Reservation Bill was brought when late Atal Behari Vajpayee was Prime Minister. We want it to be passed. It is unfortunate that the bill has been passed by the Lok Sabha but could not be passed in Rajya Sabha as we do not have required numbers there."
She alleged that the Congress and other parties had been doing politics over the bill and that was also a reason that the bill could not be passed in the Upper House.
"But it's clear that BJP wants to bring the bill and definitely we will bring It. However, in spite of that BJP is such a party that there are six-seven women Ministers in the Union government. They are working very well. BJP has given ministries like defense, finance to women. Besides that, there are five women Governors appointed during the BJP regime. Most of the women MPs, MLAs, Mayors and Zilla Panchayat (ZP) presidents belong to BJP. We have implemented a 33 percent reservation to women in our organizational structure,'' Rahatkar said.
To a question, she said there was no reservation for women in state assemblies and party wanted to bring that but in spite of that BJP was encouraging women's participation in the party organization.
"We have encouraged women's participation in politics. Its different thing that still numbers is less but it's a process which will continue,'' Rahatkar said.
The BJP Mahila Morcha national president further said that maternity leave for women from 12 weeks to 26 weeks had benefitted women employees working in both, public and private sectors. She also denied that there were complaints from women’s organizations that employers are not keen on hiring female workers or asking them to quit jobs just before maternity to avoid additional liability.
Rahatkar said the Government of India's 'Beti Bachao Beti Padhao' campaign changed the mindset of the people and helped to increase the sex ratio in the country. In Haryana before 'Beti Bachao Beti Padhao' campaign, the sex ratio was 825 girls to 1000 boys but now it had increased to 915 girls to 1000 boys. She claimed that the Modi-led BJP government was the first government in the country wherein women's welfare schemes had taken the center stage.
She further stated that a bill to ban commercial surrogacy in the country would be passed soon. Meanwhile, Goa BJP Mahila Morcha will celebrate the international women's day by organizing various programs on March 7 and 8.
Outgoing BJP Mahila Morcha president and State executive member Sulakshana Sawant and party spokesperson Kunda Chodankar were also present for the press briefing.