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There should be 50 per cent reservation for women: FM

April 02, 2008 20:44 IST

Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram regretted that there has been stiff resistance from certain quarters over the reservation bill, which would ensure 33 per cent seats for women in Parliament and legislatures.

Chidambaram said this while releasing the book Karmic Divas -- stories of eight powerful and wealthy women written by Prerna Kaul Misra and printed by Vitasta publications.

The eight women who feature in the book are Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Kalpana Morparia, Naina Lal Kidwai, Neelam Dhawan, designer Ritu Kumar, Swati A Piramal, Vanita Bali and Vandana Luthra.

"I wonder what happens when the bill for reservation goes to the law department. In fact I would say that there should be 50 per cent reservation for women and not just 33 per cent," he said.

Chidambaram expressed his anguish over the practice in some communities of killing the girl child after birth.

"Unfortunately, some of them have carried this practice to the West where they have migrated for better opportunities. I wish the book had been about women who have done work in their own field, including NGOs and distinguished themselves. But in the end it is the game of who seizes the opportunity when it comes," he said.

Chidrambaram admitted that the government would have to find means to ensure protection to the girl child.

"We have to find schemes that lean in favour of the girl child. Let us celebrate the birth of every child be it a boy or girl," he said.

The finance minister gave the media a slip who had come to the book launch to ask him a few probing questions about inflation and the Karnataka and Tamil Nadu problem.

Onkar Singh in New Delhi