Thiruvananthapuram : Kerala’s ruling Left Democratic Front (LDF) Friday recommended to the state government to reserve 50 percent seats in local governments for women.
“We have now decided that it is time to ensure that 50 percent of seats are reserved for women. We expect it to take place by the local bodies polls next year,” LDF convener Vaikom Viswan told reporters.
With the liaison committee of the LDF, the highest decision making body of the alliance, recommending the reservation, it is expected that the V.S. Achuthanandan government will soon make the necessary amendments to the state’s Panchayat Raj and Municipality Act.
Terming the recommendation “historic”, T.N. Seema, the state president of the All India Democratic Women’s Association (AIDWA), said: “Today there are 20,554 elected representatives in Kerala, of whom 33.33 percent seats are reserved for women. There are also certain general seats where women do contest and currently there are around 7,000 women representatives.”
“Now women will have the equal number of seats and this is a testimony to the efforts and the good work done by the elected women representatives,” she said.
Kerala has 1,224 local self-government institutions that include 999 ‘gram panchayats’ (village councils), 152 block panchayats, 14 district panchayats, 53 municipalities and five corporations.
The polls to these local governments are slated to take place in September next year.