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Snapshot of the day
September 20, 2023
As Parliament moved to its new premises, Prime Minister Modi urged MPs to leave behind the partisan bitterness of the past. Underground, the trolls will remain gainfully employed.
Stop "saluting... worshipping" women and allow them to "walk as equals", DMK MP Kanimozhi told parliament today during the debate over the Women’s Reservation Bill. Now that the euphoria and hype is over, the penny has dropped on everyone that it will be a while before every third seat belongs to a woman. Working backwards, implementation of the new law, which would be in force for at least 15 years, would require the delimitation of constituencies. In turn, that would depend on the Census, which left off being decennial after Covid. In other words, Modi hopes he will reap the electoral benefits of the move next year, but actual implementation will follow long after. The Indian Census is the world’s biggest administrative exercise and cannot be conducted at short notice. Home Minister Amit Shah says the census and delimitation exercise will be held soon after the 2024 elections.
For a year leading up to Modi, “the chosen one”, tabling the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam in Parliament, the visibly patriarchal RSS has been talking up gender representation, both in its ranks and in society at large, says the Indian Express. In October 2022, it had its first woman chief guest at the Vijayadashami celebrations at the party headquarters in Nagpur. The body sought the involvement of women in functions like public service and proselytising. ‘Family shakhas’ organised by married cadres were also encouraged.
Other parties question the BJP’s motives. Binoy Viswam of the CPI told PTI that it was never for women’s rights or reservation. As have the women wrestlers still demanding the punishment of a BJP MP for sexual molestation.
SAD’s Harsimrat Kaur Badal asks why the deadline for actual implementation of women’s reservations is undeclared. AM Ariff of the CPI(M) says that the BJP has conducted the special session to claim credit for the Women’s Reservation Bill, but it should actually go to women and organisations who moved the courts.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation says that Justin Trudeau went public with the charge against India because it was about to appear in the press. “We are not looking to provoke or escalate,” Canadian PM Trudeau told reporters in Ottawa. “We are simply laying out the facts as we understand them, and we want to work with the government of India.” He has rejected India’s rejection of charges brought by Canada, and sought Delhi’s aid in probing the matter. The diplomatic unpleasantness, right in the midst of US President Joe Biden trying to recruit India as a partner against China, presents difficulties both for both nations, says the New York Times.
Brahma Chellaney asked in an op-ed in the Globe and Mail why the Canadian government had not made arrests and made public the evidence it had before accusing India of complicity. Dick Fadden, a former head of the Canadian intelligence services suggests an answer:
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