New Delhi, Aug 27: The Union Cabinet on Thursday, Aug 27 approved fifty percent reservation for women in panchayats all across the country.
"The Cabinet has approved the amendment of Article 243 (d) of the Constitution to reserve 50 per cent of the total number of seats in panchayats filled by direct election for women," said Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni here after a Cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
The states which have already implemented 50 per cent reservation for women in panchayati raj institutions are Bihar, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh.
While Rajasthan has announced implementation of the proposal in the next panchayat election in 2010, Kerala recently declared that it would implement it.
The 33 per cent reservation for women in panchayats was achieved through the 73rd Constitutional Amendment during the regime of Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao, though it was Rajiv Gandhi who first mooted the idea of empowering women at the grassroots.