Panaji, Sep 29 (IANS): The Congress party on Thursday said that the BJP's 'jumla' politics stands exposed as they deny women MLAs their rightful place in the Goa Cabinet.
Reacting to the Goa BJP President Sadanand Tanavade's assertion that the party cannot allocate two ministries to one family, Congress leader Girish Chodankar said that the BJP lacks dedication to women's empowerment.
The ruling BJP on Wednesday rejected a demand by the Congress to induct its three women MLAs in the 12-member male-dominated Cabinet and asked if “two Cabinet berths” can be given to one family.
“Can you give two Cabinet berths in one family? That is the first question… After reservation we will have to compulsorily give (Cabinet berths to women). At the Centre there are ten women ministers. Everything will happen at the right time. There is no need to worry,” Tanavade said, rejecting the Congress’ demand.,
The BJP has three couple MLAs in the Goa Legislative Assembly. They are Health Minister Vishwajit Rane and his wife Deviya Rane, Revenue Minister Atanasio Monserrate and his wife Jennifer Monserrate, and Michael Lobo and his wife Delilah Lobo.
“The BJP's 'jumla' politics stands exposed as they deny women MLAs their rightful place in the Cabinet. I must ask, why is the present time not apt for the induction of the three BJP women MLAs into the predominantly male Cabinet?” Chodankar questioned.
“It is unjust to withhold ministries from them under the guise of being 'first-time' MLAs, especially when several male MLAs and MPs in the BJP have been appointed ministers in their first terms. If Dr. Pramod Sawant can become Chief Minister without becoming minister then why can’t first time MLAs become ministers?” Chodankar questioned.
He said that the BJP’s reluctance towards women’s reservation and equality is evident.
“Had they been earnest, they would have promptly provided opportunities for women MLAs to assume ministerial roles and implemented women’s reservation,” he said.