Women representation in Central Ministry declines from 8 to 6
GUWAHATI: Altogether six women Ministers have found a place in the new Modi government that took oath on May 30. Of these six, only three are Ministers of Cabinet rank — Amethi MP Smriti Irani, former defense minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Bathinda MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal from Shiromani Akali Dal.
Apart from the Union Ministers, three women MPs — Fatehpur MP Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Chhattisgarh's Saruja MP Renuka Singh Saruta and West Bengal's Raiganj MP Debashree Chaudhuri — took oath as Ministers of State.
In 2014, there were eight women Ministers in the Modi government. Of the eight Ministers, Sushma Swaraj (Minister of External Affairs), Uma Bharti (Minister of Drinking Water and Sanitation), Maneka Gandhi (Minister of Women and Child Development) and Anupriya Patel (Minister of State, Health and Family Welfare) are not part of the newly formed council of ministers.
However, three women Miniters from the previous Ministry - Smriti Irani, Nirmala Sitharaman and Harsimrat Kaur Badal - have been a part of the new Modi government.
It’s, however, important to note that the 2019 Lok Sabha elections were a milestone for women in politics in India. A total of 724 women contested the elections from all over the country, out of which 78 were elected as MPs. This is higher than the 62-member count of 2014.
In the newly elected 17th Lok Sabha, female representation is at 14.3%- the highest since independence. Yet, only three women find themselves sworn in as Union ministers, making up 12% of the new Cabinet.