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Sonia, Priyanka, top INDIA bloc women leaders to address DMK Women’s Rights conference tomorrow

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Chennai: A galaxy of top women leaders of the Opposition -led INDIA bloc, including Former Congress President Sonia Gandhi and General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi, will deliver special address at the Women Rights Conference to be organised by the DMK in the city on Saturday.

The conference was being organised for demanding immediate implementation of the 33 per cent reservation for women passed in Parliament.

DMK Lok Sabha Member and Women’s Wing Leader Kanimozhi said Tamil Nadu Chief Minister and DMK President M.K.Stalin will preside over the conference to be organised to mark the birth centenary of DMK Patriarch and late Chief Minister M.Karunanidhi.

Recalling various women welfare initiatives launched by Mr Karunanidhi for their development in all spheres and to protect their rights, including reservation for women in government jobs and local bodies, she said these initiatives were now carried forward by the DMK’s Dravidian Model governance led by Mr Stalin, who had launched various schemes, including free bus travel for women and appointing them as temple priests.

Pointing out that the DMK’s long pending demand of Bill providing 33 per cent reservation for Women in Parliament and Legislatures was passed in Parliament after nine years by the BJP-led government at the Centre at a time when the Lok Sabha elections are round the
corner, Ms Kanimozhi, who is also the Deputy General Secretary of the DMK, said it could not come into force with immediate effect citing population census and delimitation exercise.

“It has been announced that it will come into force from 2029 and that too it is uncertain”, she added.

Hence, to urge the Centre to immediately implement the 33 per cent reservation for women as it was compulsion of time, the DMK Women’s Wing will be organising this massive Women’s Rights Conference at the sprawling Nandanam YMCA grounds in the city, where several key political meetings, had been held in the past.

Ms Kanimozhi said, apart from Ms Sonia and Priyanka, top women leaders of the INDIA alliance, including former Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, National Congress Party Working President Supriya Sule, CPI(M) Politrburo Member Subashini Ali, CPI National Executive Member and General Secretary of National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW) Annie Raja and other women leaders will take part and address the gathering.

Ms Kanimozhi said the Women’s Rights Conference would strongly register its opinion against the BJP for what she called “insincerity regarding reservation for women”.

She told reporters that the passing of the Women’s Reservation Bill providing 33 per cent quota in Parliament and State Legislatures for Women, with the support of all the parties, was an “eyewash” since the BJP has ensured that it would not come into force by imposing
“certain conditions”.

The conference would also voice its opinion against the “indifferent” approach of the Union government towards the ongoing conflict in Manipur and have discussions about the lack of employment, safety and other issues affecting women.

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