Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday moved a resolution seeking 33 per cent reservation for women in the state legislative assembly and the Parliament.
While moving the resolution for the consideration of the House, the Chief Minister said: "I initiate the discussion on this historic motion for providing 33 per cent reservation for women in the legislative assembly and the Parliament."
"Empowerment of women is very close to my heart. No household, no society, no state, no country has ever moved forward without empowering its women. Our government has always been working sincerely for the socio-economic empowerment of women in the state," he added.
He further said that historic initiatives like Mission Shakti, MAMATA, girls' education, loans at one per cent interest, hostels for 5 lakh tribal girls, provision of 7 lakh for women under the Biju Swasthya Kalyan Yojana (BSKY), land rights for women are some of the initiatives that have brought about a movement transforming the lives of millions of women.
In 2001, Mission Shakti was started as a project and now it has transformed into a movement-- 70 lakh women and 6 lakh groups are transforming the socio-economic landscape of Odisha.
Patnaik said the principle of gender equality is enshrined in our constitution. "Biju Babu was the true champion of women's empowerment. In 1992, he brought women to the realm of political decision making by providing 33 per cent reservation for women in local bodies. He once said--I am confident that the mothers and sisters who run their household so efficiently will run the Panchayat Samiti and Zila Parishad with equal competence," he said.
"My government has further enhanced reservation for women to 50 per cent. In fact, it's heartening to know that in real numbers it's much more than 50 per cent. The new Odisha will move forward with much greater momentum, only if half of our population, our mothers and daughters have a role in the highest decision making bodies of our state and our country. Odisha must show its commitment and its resolve to the entire Nation that it is the land where women are truly empowered and truly involved in nation-building," the Chief Minister said.
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