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Women's bill: Hindi newspapers had wide coverage

August 27, 2005 17:34 IST

Given how it is Hindi-belt politicians -- Mulayam Singh Yadav, Lalu Prasad Yadav, and Uma Bharati -- have been opposing the Women's Reservation Bill, it is not surprising that, of the non-English language newspapers, it is primarily the Hindi ones that have reported the matter with some intensity over the week.

Mulayam for only 10 per cent reservation for women

While Dainik Jagran had a front-page story on the bill, it had a box item on how Uma Bharati wanted a 50% reservation within the quota for backward caste women.

Rajasthan Patrika had a good front-page display on the matter along with a picture of United Progressive Alliance chief Sonia Gandhi along with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the bill's arch-opponent Mulayam Singh Yadav. It even carried an editorial on the bill, which asked how much reservation, and for how long.

Punjab Kesari had the bill as its lead story, along with a picture of Sonia, Dr Singh and Mulayam. The newspaper pointed out that this bill has had perhaps one of the most chequered histories in Parliament.

The women's quota bill issue was covered in Dinamalar on three days, but not much importance was given. It was straight reporting of the opinions expressed by different political parties without edits or cartoons.

On August 21, it was carried on one of the inside pages -- there was a news item on Dravida Munetra Kazhagam chief Karunanidhi referring to the women's reservation in Parliament on the sidelines of releasing the english version of one of his books.

On another day, the daily carried a front-page news story and a photograph showing Manmohan and Sonia talking to each other. The four-column story spoke about the opposition of Mulayam and Lalu to amending the bill.

A day or two later, the daily carried a news item on page two about Singh saying that he is determined to amend the Bill.

PM sure of support for Women's Reservation bill

Also, there was a box item of Lal Kishenchand Advani blaming the central government for causing the delay in amending the Bill. On the front page, there was a photograph showing some women asleep at the meeting where the prime minister announced the amendment of the bill.

Eenadu carried an editorial on the issue in July, which highlighted the lack of zeal among the political parties to come to a consensus on the bill.

The bill was first presented in Parliament in 1997 when H D Deve Gowda was the prime minister, but was then trashed by the Janata Dal Members of Parliament.

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Sub: Women's bill....

Will India ever be free of societial stratification, whether caste, economic situation, ethnic or religious background? When will a person in this stinking land be ...

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