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SC adjourns plea on immediate implementation of Women Reservation Bill

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday, January 16, adjourned, till January 22, the hearing on a PIL seeking immediate implementation of the Women Reservation Bill before the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

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A bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta proceeded to defer the hearing after no lawyer made an appearance on behalf of the Union government.

Senior advocate Vikas Singh, appearing for petitioner Jaya Thakur, said that there is an urgency in the matter and 1/3rd quota may be implemented in 2024 polls if the PIL is allowed by the apex court.

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Ordering the matter to be listed on January 22, Justice Khanna said: “I am not going to say anything. Let the other side come.”

In November 2023, the top court had refused to issue notice in the matter and remarked that it will be “very difficult” to strike down the provision of the Nari Shakti Vandan Adhiniyam Bill 2023 which provides that the 33 per cent quota for women in the legislature will not be implemented unless decennial census and subsequent delimitation exercise is carried out.

The PIL had contended that there was no requirement of the census and delimitation because the number of seats are already declared and the present amendment gives 33 per cent reservation for existing seats.

The plea said that this is an admitted position in our country that 50 per cent is women population but they have only 4 per cent representation in elections.

On January 12, the Supreme Court refused to entertain a similar plea filed by an advocate saying that it does not want multiplicity of litigation in the matter. However, it asked the petitioner, Yogamaya M.G. to instead file an impleadment application in the pending batch of petitions.

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