UNDP Calls for the Formation of a Caucus of Women Political Leaders across Party Lines

UNDP called for the formation of a caucus of women political leaders across party lines to enhance women’s participation within political parties and to advocate for the Women’s Reservation Bill as a collective voice at the Roundtable on Women’s Participation in Politics on 12 October 2012. In discussion with parliamentarians, social activists and grassroots leaders at the roundtable, organized by UNDP, UN Under-Secretary-General and UNDP Associate Administrator, Rebeca Grynspan said, “More diverse participation in politics is not only good for women but is key for society and a strong democracy.”

The roundtable also gave an opportunity to women to discuss how social norms and patriarchal mindsets were preventing them from entering politics. India ranks 129 out of 147 countries on UNDP’s Gender Equality Index, lower than all South Asian countries except Afghanistan at 141. One of the key factors pulling down India’s rank on this index is the low level women’s representation in Parliament at just under 11 percent.

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