Women's Reservation Bill in Par only after consensus: PM

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New Delhi, May 7 (UNI) Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today said the Women's Reservation Bill was introduced in Parliament as there was a consensus among the UPA allies in the Union Cabinet.

Stressing that the UPA allies were, in principle, not opposed to the Bill, he said they had some reservations over the inclusion of backward class women in the quota.

''We have taken the first step and are trying to further build a consensus on the Bill,'' Dr Singh told reporters after the Defence investiture ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan this evening.

Asked about the consensus on the issue, he said the Bill was introduced in the Rajya Sabha only after there was a unanimity on it in the Union Cabinet.

''If there was no consensus, it would not have been put before the House,'' Dr Singh said and expressed the hope that the UPA allies and other political parties would rally around him on the Bill.

The Prime Minister also said that the Standing Committee would take care of the concerns raised by some members.

On inflation, he said it was a worldwide phenomenon and expressed optimism that the prices would come down in few months.

''Lets face it,'' Dr Singh said when asked about the growing inflationary trends which were leading to rising prices.

''In three months time, we will see some changes.'' On China's aggressive posturing vis-a-vis building of a major underground nuclear submarine base near the holiday resort of Sanya on southern China's Hainan island, the Prime Minister said: ''All the necessary steps were being taken to face the situation.'' UNI AN RR DB2140

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