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No consensus on women’s Bill, talks continue

No consensus on women’s Bill, talks continue
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First Published: Tue, Apr 06 2010. 12 00 AM IST
Updated: Tue, Apr 06 2010. 12 00 AM IST
New Delhi: The government said on Monday that discussions will continue on the Women’s Reservation Bill after an all-party meet failed to resolve an impasse on caste and community quotas within the draft legislation that seeks to allot one-third of the seats in legislatures to women.
Finance minister Pranab Mukherjee chaired the meeting. No date for resuming discussions has been announced.
Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad, who attended the meet, said reservation for women in legislatures without a quota for Muslims, backward classes and Dalits was not acceptable to his party. “We have asked for further discussion,” he said.
The main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party and Communist Party of India (Marxist) reiterated their support to the Bill in its present form.
An analyst said a failure to arrive at a consensus means the Bill was unlikely to be passed in the ongoing Budget session of Parliament, which resumes on 15 April after a recess. “It is a Constitutional amendment and the government cannot risk rushing the Bill as it could also be challenged in the court,” said Vivek Kumar, associate professor at the Centre for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University.
PTI contributed to this story.
santosh.j@livemint.com
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First Published: Tue, Apr 06 2010. 12 00 AM IST
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