Haryana’s local party Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) is the latest to support the cause of participation of women in politics by announcing 33 percent reservations of tickets to women in the upcoming assembly elections. The party began its election campaign on Wednesday (September 25), which also happens to be the birth anniversary of its founder late Devi Lal, when it made the announcement.

“All parties make the promise of reserving seats for women, but the INLD will implement it in this election. I promise that we will give 33 percent tickets to women,” INLD chief Om Prakash Chautala said while addressing the Samman Diwas rally held to mark the 106th birth anniversary of Devi Lal.

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Key Takeaways:

  • INLD reserves 33 percent tickets for the upcoming Haryana assembly election for women to support gender equality in the parliament.
  • INLD is not the only party with this promise as Yogendra Yadav’s Swaraj India has also declared to give 33 percent tickets to women in June.
  • Party leader Abhay Singh Chautala promised a grant of Rs five lakhs for each girl as ‘kanyadan’ at the time of her marriage.

While the party did not field any female candidate during the Lok Sabha election held in April-May, it is on a road to improvement. It has even vowed to bear the campaign expenses of all the women candidates fielded by the party in this assembly election.

“One-third tickets to women in polls has been a long pending demand but no mainstream party has implemented it yet. The INLD will give 30 tickets to women for the 90-member Haryana Assembly,” said INLD secretary general R S Chaudhary, a former IAS officer. INLD is not the only party with this promise as Yogendra Yadav’s Swaraj India which is contesting from all seats in Haryana also announced in June that they have decided to give 33 percent tickets to women.

INLD has decided to release its list of candidates on October 2 which is also celebrated as Gandhi Jayanti in the country. “We will bring policies to provide all facilities to you; your children will be given jobs as per their qualification, irrespective of their caste, religion and political association,” said Chautala in his 25-minute speech. He also promised initiatives that his party will take after coming to power to aid farmers. He promised INLD will ensure that the Swaminathan Commission report is implemented so that the farmer gets fair and remunerative prices for their produce.

“One-third tickets to women in polls has been a long pending demand but no mainstream party has implemented it yet. The INLD will give 30 tickets to women for the 90-member Haryana Assembly”

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To improve the condition of women and young girls, party leader Abhay Singh Chautala promised a grant of Rs five lakhs for each girl as ‘kanyadaan’ at the time of her marriage. The party has also promised free higher education for girls.

Haryana elections will take place on October 21 and of all the parties only Swaraj India and INLD have shown any intention to give tickets to more women. This is happening since in the last few years parties have been pulled up by the media for not giving enough space to women in terms of candidacy in the state or central elections. While most parties focus on winning neglecting the cause of women’s representation in parliaments, there are very few that still go out of their comfort zone to make such claims of reserving tickets for women. In all of this, it is worth noting that most political parties including the ruling party and leader of opposition still don’t think women are ‘winnable’ candidates.

Picture credit: asia.nikkei.com

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