AICC for more tickets to women, youth in polls: Alva
Kochi, Mar 6: Asserting that the AICC was in favour of more tickets being given to women and youth in the coming assembly elections, Congress All-India General Secretary Margaret Alva today (Mar 6, 2006) said these sections formed a vital support base of the party.
Inaugurating the General Body Meeting of the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) here, Mrs Alva said that it was unfortunate while women formed nearly 50 per cent of the electorate and were extensively used for campaigning, they were sidelined during ticket selection.
Citing AICC statistics, Mrs Alva said these showed that women candidates had a better winning rate than men. Still, excuses such as age and experience were touted as reasons for denying them tickets.
Calling for more representation of the youth also, she said that India was a young nation with more than 60 per cent of the electorate under the age of 45 years.
When the Congress Government decided to give 18-year-olds the right to vote, despite opposition from certain quarters, the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi had asserted that the future belonged to the youth and they had a right to participate in its making.
Significantly, while the Kerala state unit of the Mahila Congress yesterday urged party president Sonia Gandhi to give 20 per cent of the tickets to women, the Youth Congress demanded that one-third of the candidates be new faces.