NEW DELHI: Jayalalithaa run Tamil Nadu has announced 50 per cent quota for women in all local rural and urban bodies. The decision for the reservation came during the ongoing budget session in the state assembly.

The state already provides for 33 per cent quota for women in all the municipal bodies. The following amendments, Tamil Nadu Municipal Laws (Amendment) Act, 2016, and the Tamil Nadu Panchayats (Amendment) Act, 2016, were legislated to provide for an increase in the quota from 33 to 50 per cent. Women to the extent of new reservation can be elected to urban corporations, local bodies, and rural and urban Panchayats.

The amendment proposes to address the unequal representation in these bodies, which are predominated by men, and to ameliorate the chronic backwardness of women.

The Bill was proposed by Minister for Municipal Administration, Rural Development, Law, Courts and Prisons S. P. Velumani, and was adopted unanimously by a voice vote.

The decision to increase the quota in electoral, as it happens, has come in the wake of a serious deliberations at the Centre for the same move. At the Centre also, women enjoy one third reservations at both Houses and proposals have been raised often to increase it to 50 per cent.

At present, of the total reserved seats for women only 11 per cent are filled by them. India is not the only country which provides reservation for women in parliament; countries such as Rwanda in Central Africa and Serbia in Europe have almost equal representation of women in electoral bodies.