Only Nine Female MPs In Delhi Since 1951 - Will 2024 See A Change?

Only nine women have been elected as Members of Parliament in the 68-year poll history of Delhi. The maximum number of women elected in a single poll was two.

Tanya Savkoor
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Women In Politics, voters, elections

Only nine women have been elected as Members of Parliament from Delhi in the 68-year poll history, according to a recent report. Since 1951, in the 17 Lok Sabha Polls, the number of women elected has remained in single digits, showing a stark lack of representation for women in the national capital. The report showed that only two women have been elected at once in a poll and that too only thrice--  in 1971, 1996 and 1998. Moreover, no woman has been elected more than twice.


The report by News18  shows a crucial need to bridge the gender gap in Indian politics. Delhi will go to the polls on May 25 and so far, BJP has fielded Bansuri Swaraj and Kamaljeet Sehrawat while the AAP and Congress alliance have fielded no women yet. 

Gender Gap In Delhi Politics

In Delhi, the number of female voters has been remarkably soaring with each election. The capital city boasts a total of 1.48 crore voters, with over 67.30 lakh women. The number of women in the octagenarian category (and above) has surpassed men. However, the representation of women in the Parliament remains at 14.3% only. 

In the country's first general election in 1951, Sucheta Kriplani was elected as the first-ever Member of Parliament from Delhi. The Kisan Mazdoor Praja Party member was re-elected in 1975 with a Congress ticket. Then, in the next two elections, no other woman was elected from Delhi.

In 1971, Mukul Banerjee (New Delhi) and Subhadra Joshi (Chandni Chowk) were elected from the Congress. Again, in 1977 and 1980, no woman was elected. Then came Sundarwati Nawal Prabhakar from Karol Bagh in 1984. In 1996 and 1998, BJP’s Sushma Swaraj and Congress’ Meira Kumar were elected.

In 1999, Anita Arya from Karol Bagh bagged the seat. Cut to 2004, Krishna Tirath from North West Delhi was elected and re-elected in 2009. After that, Meenakshi Lekhi came to power in 2014 and again in 2019, both from the New Delhi constituency. Other than Kisan Mazdoor Praja, BJP, and Congress, no other party has had female MPs.

In the previous general election, there were 16 women candidates out of the total 164, and only Meenakshi Lekhi made it to the Parliament. That year, the Congress had fielded three-time CM Sheila Dikshit, who was second in the North East Delhi seat while BJP’s Manoj Tiwari bagged the seat. AAP had fielded Aatishi from East Delhi, who stood third.

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