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Call your Women MLA – Media Release

Media Release: Shakti -“Political Power To Women”
Shakti – Call Women MLAs All India Campaign
Jan 21st Monday 7 PM – 9.30 PM
 
Women MLAs Across India Want Their Parties to Give Upto 
50% MP Tickets to Women
 
 
 
 
 
Shakti –  “Political Power to Women” nationwide “Call Women MLAs” campaign on 21st January 2019, 7 pm – 9.30 pm reaching out simultaneously to 340 women MLAs across India, a historic first as a nationwide outreach to elected representatives.
 
This India-wide unique campaign had volunteers, both women and men from Shakti, various individual volunteers and groups across the country reach out to elected Members of Lesgislative Assemblies of ALL states. Callers asked the women MLAs if they wanted more female Members of Parliament and would request their parties to give more tickets to women candidates this Lok Sabha elections? Male MLAs were not called.
 
70 years after a democratic republic, with a meagre ~11% women only in Parliament,  least represented even when amounting to 50% of the population. This campaign was run to put pressure on all parties through their own women leaders to proportionally increase the considerations for women in distributing Lok Sabha tickets.
 
Over 500 callers including  farmers, women in corporations, students, women in IT, social services workers in child trafficking, women in media, doctors, trainers, researchers, civil society activists etc. participated in the campaign. This consisted of individual inspired volunteers and many groups across India.
 
A list of state-wise women MLA contacts and sample call scripts in various languages from the website: politicalshakti-india.org, was provided for the callers to engage in dialling women MLAs for 2.5 hours. 
 
Women MLAs from Jammu & Kashmir through Tamil Nadu and Sikkim to Punjab were reached, spread across 22 of the 29 states.
 
In the the short span of 2.5 hours, the Shakti – Call Women MLAs campaign called 339 women MLAs, of which 109 MLAs answered. 101  of the 109 MLAs clearly said they believe that many more women candidates should be given MP tickets for this Lok Sabha election by their own parties. Most promised to raise it with their party leaders. More numbers are still flowing in from volunteer callers across the country. Many women MLAs believed that 50% candidates should be women in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. Many were openly appreciative of Shakti’s campaign and mentioned that women themsleves do not demand tickets and that needs to change. Some mentioned that while they support it, it is up to their parties to take the final call. Many MLAs were called by multiple callers; 230 women MLAs did not pick up the phone or were not reachable. A few women MLAs had the courtesy to call back when they missed the call, and some had lengthy conversations. The list of supporting MLAs is attached.
 
Tara Krishnaswamy, the co-founder of Shakti on the success of the campaign said, “These women are leaders in their respective parties and their emphatic support for upto 50% women as MP candidates for the 2019 Lok Sabha is a loud signal to their own parties that they are simply betraying women party workers & eligible women leaders. This is a landmark India wide effort for women’s political rights with a simultaneous call out to 109 female elected representatives within just 2.5 hours. These 101 women MLAs represent voices of a whopping 30+crore voters of India saying India needs many more women in Parliament (3 lakhs voters per assembly constituency.) This includes MLAs from 20 major political parties, including regional and national parties. Many women MLAs said that eligible femae candidates are denied ticktes even to tune of 2 of every 10 seats contested! We, at Shakti, hope that the 101 MLAs will discuss this with their party leadership and convey that the public sentiment is vociferously for more women MPs. Shakyi will continue to ramp up the campaign for women’s political representation until political justice is done.”
 
Jothilakshmi, Shakti co-ordinator in Tamil Nadu, and an ctivist with Voice of People said: “We are not begging for kindness from parties through these calls. We are claiming what is rightfully ours and seeking to claim seats in Parliament that are rightfullty ours. This is a great exprerince in participatory democracy.”
 
Ex-Chief Minsiter of Rajasthan, MLA Vasundhara Raje of the BJP conveyed all weneeded to hear, even though in a politically correct manner, “No comment. Wishing Shakti a lot of luck to accomplish what your are trying.”
 
D(U) MLA Ranju Geeta said her party is already working on it. She heading the wing responsible for selection. She suggested to make a group of all women MLA over Whatspp or Facebook so they can collaborate for women’s representatoon!
 
Aparna Sengupta, Jharkhand ML from AIFB said, “Women are equals with men in so many ways and deserve equal representation in the Parliament. I will surely raise it.”
 
MLA Aseia Naqash of PDP, Jammau & Kashir , not only agreed with demanding 50% MP tickets for women, she was very interested to know about Shakti initiative.
 
Independent MLA Bebi Kumari from Bihar said  she has protested in the House demanding 50% representation for women and will do it for parties to give 50% Lok Sabha tickets to women too!”
 
Shakti is a non partisan inclusive platform of women across who have joined hands, regardless of region, caste, creed, ideology and setting aside our differences with single minded objective to get more women elected as MLAs and MPs. Shakti calls upon all men and women that believe in fair representation in politics to join us on bit.ly/shakti-india
 
Contact: Tara Krishnaswamy
Number: +91 9341941945
 
We request you to kindly cover this campaign. Thank you for your support!
 
 
List of states where women MLAs were reached: Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Haryana, J&K, Jharkhand, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Odisha, Punjab, Rajasthan, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, West Bengal
 
 
Attached is a list of women MLAs who said YES parties giving upto 50% MP ticktes to women for this Lok Sabha election.

Call your MP! Media Release

Media Release: Shakti -“Political Power To Women”Shakti – Call Your MP All Indi a CampaignDec 27th Saturday 7 PM – 9.30 PM

Shakti –  “Political Power to Women” nationwide “Call your MP” campaign on 27th December 2018, 7 pm – 9.30 pm saw stupendous success! 
This India-wide unique campaign had volunteers, both women and men from Shakti, various individual volunteers and groups across the country reach out to elected Members of Parliament to table and pass the Women’s Reservation Bill. 70 years after a democratic republic, with a meagre ~10% women only in State Assemblies & Parliament, women are the largest demographic that is least represented. Since this winter session is the final Parliament session in this term, this campaign was run to put pressure on all parties to get this bill passed at least now, nearly 30 years after it was first mooted.
Over 500 callers including  farmers, women in corporations, rape survivors, students, women in IT, rehabilitated manual scavengers, women in media, bankers, trainers, researchers, civil society activists, domestic workers, advertising professionals, entrepreneurs etc. participated in the campaign.
This consisted of individual inspired volunteers and over 20 groups across India. The list of groups is mentioned below. 
Armed with a list of MP contacts for the states, and sample call scripts in various languages from website: http://politicalshakti-india.org, callers engaged in diallingMPs for 2.5 hours. 
MPs from Jammu & Kashmir through Tamil Nadu and Assam to Gujarat were reached, spread across 21of the 29 states, including Lakshadweep.
In the the short span of 2.5 hours, the Shakti – Call Your MP campaign called 373 Lok Sabha MPs, of which 128 MPs answered. 126  of the 128 MPs said they support the Bill and will try to raise it in Parliament this Winter Session. More numbers are still flowing in from volunteer callers across the country. Some mentioned that while they support it, it is up to their parties to decide to table the Bill. Many MPs were called by multiple callers; 258 MPs did not pick up the phone or were not reachable. A few MPs had the courtesy to call back when they missed the call, and some had lengthy conversations. The list of supporting MPs is attached.
Tara Krishnaswamy, the co-founder of Shakti on the success of the campaign said, “This is a landmark India wide effort for women’s political rights with a simultaneousoutreach to 126 elected representatives within just 2.5 hours. It is a thumping success to hear MPs who represent the voices of a whopping 192 million people of India say YES to the Women’s Reservation Bill (16 lakhs voters per constituency.) This includes MPs from 23 major political parties other than the BJP supporting the Bill. Many non-BJP MPs including from state parties mentioned that they have been raising the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha, including on Dec 27th but that they were not permitted by the House to discuss it. What is stopping the ruling party from passing the Bill when the most complicated Aadhaar, GST & controversial Instant Triple Talaq have been passed? We hope that the 126 MPs will discuss with each other and aggregate the demand in the House, with time running out Shakti will continue to ramp up this campaign until women get their political due.”
Bhim Raskar of RSCD (Resource and Support Centre for Development) Maharashtra, said, “This was an amazing campaign and scores of our Panchayat members and teams participated. The real challenge is to maintain and create more pressure till the bill is passed.”
Shree DN, of the Shakti Team, one of the callers said, “Now when they say the session is getting over, and only budget session is left. We then ask for a joint special session exclusively for the WRB. After all, they do it when they want, now let them do it because people want it. “
MP Dr Dharam Vira Gandhi, of AAP Punjab who had missed the call, courteously called back to said: “Despite many parties raising it in the House today, the Speaker was not giving us an opportunity to discuss the WRB. We plan to meet the Speaker in her chambers today and persuade her.”
MP PK Sreemathi, CPI(M) Kerala said, “We planned to organise a protest in Lok Sabha on the WRB tomorrow or the day after.”
MP Farooq Abdullah of the NC,  not only agreed with 33% reservation for women in the Assemblies and Parliament, he asked for an official letter from Shakti to his office.
MP and Spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi not only agreed with the demand to pass the WRB, she said “We should also persuade for 33% seats for women within political parties.” when called by Archana Jha of Centre for Social Research, a partner in the Shakti: Call Your MP campaign.
MP Dr Prabhas Kumar of the BJD, also called back when he finished his meeting and said that, “Not only is BJD pushing this agenda with the Centre and states, and plans to meet the President on this, it is crucial for citizen groups like Shakti to raise the demand and create public momentum.”
Shakti is a non partisan inclusive platform of women across who have joined hands, regardless of region, caste, creed, ideology and setting aside our differences with single minded objective to get more women elected as MLAs and MPs. Shakti calls upon all men and women that believe in fair representation in politics to join us on bit.ly/shakti-india
Contact: Tara KrishnaswamyNumber: +91 9341941945
We request you to kindly cover this campaign. Thank you for your support!

List of states where MPs were reached: Jammu & Kashmir, Rajasthan, Haryana, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Assam, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry, Kerala, West Bengal, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Lakshadweep

List of Shakti – Call Your MP Campaign partner groups: 
  • Telangana Joint Action Committee
  • Jan Sahas
  • Women Power Connect
  • Centre for Social Research
  • Ekal Nari Shakti Sanghattan
  • Resource and Support Centre for Development
  • Global Concerns India
  • Stree Jagriti Samiti 
  • Youth for Seva 
  • Meghshala 
  • Voice of People 
  • VFSTR – Vignan University
  • RTE Forum
  • Campaign for Electoral Reform
  • Rural Education and Development Society
  • TEDS Trust
  • Avantika Foundation
  • National Adivasi Solidarity Council


List of MPs who were reached and said YES to WRB being tabled & passed is below the 2 attached pictures:



Farooq Abdullah
NC
S.P. Muddahanumegowda
INC
Bhagwanth Khuba
BJP
Shivkumar Udasi
BJP
V S Ugrappa
INC
Anant Kumar Hegde
BJP
DK Suresh
INC
Shivarame Gowda
JDS
P. C. Gaddigoudar
BJP
Chandrappa BN
INC
Ramesh Chandrappa
BJP
Shobha Karandlaje
BJP
Prahlad Joshi
BJP
Veerappa Moily
INC
PC Mohan
BJP
Suresh Angadi
BJP
K H Muniyappa
BJP
Pratap Simha
BJP
Rajeev Gowda
INC
Riti Pathak
BJP
Thangso Baite
INC
Vincent Pala
INC
Dr Prabhas Kumar
BJD
Shakuntala Laguri
BJD
Sarojini Hembram
BJD
R Radhakrishnan
All India NR Congress
Dr. Dharam Vira Gandhi
AAP
Ramcharan Bohra
BJP
C Gopalakrishnan
AIADMK
Maragatham Kumarvel
AIADMK
Dr Anbumani Ramdoss
PMK
B Senguttuvan
AIADMK
K Ashok Kumar
AIADMK
R K Bharathi Mohan
AIADMK
G Hari
AIADMK
J Jayakumar (Jayavardhan)
AIADMK
K Parasuraman
AIADMK
Dr K Kamaraj
AIADMK
C Mahendran
AIADMK
R P Marutharaja
AIADMK
T N Jayasingh
AIADMK
R Parthiban
AIADMK
A Anwar Raajaa
AIADMK
T Radhakrishnan
AIADMK
S Rajendran
AIADMK
S R Vijayakumar
AIADMK
Selvakumar
AIADMK
Gopal K
AIADMK
P Kumar
AIADMK
M Vasanthi
AIADMK
 
Dayakar Pasunoori
TRS
Bheemrao Baswanthrao Patil
TRS
A P Jithender Redy
TRS
Ch Malla Reddy
TDP
Konda Vishveshwar Reddy
TRS
Asaduddin Owaisi
MIM
Sukender Reddy
TRS
 Boora Narsaiah
TRS
Vinod Kumar
TRS
K Keshava Rao
TRS
Nandi Yelliah
TRS
Kotha Prabhakar Reddy
TRS
Jitendra Chaudhury
CPM
Nagendra Pratap Singh Patel
SP
Dr Sugata Bose
TMC
Dr Abhijit Mukherjee
INC
Kakoli Ghosh Dastidar
TMC
Sajda Ahmed
TMC
Dibyendu Adhikari
TMC
DR Ratna Dey Nag
TMC
 
D Ravindra Babu Pandulu
TDP
Gokaraju Ganga Raju
BJP
Kristappa Nimmala
TDP
Sriram Malathi
TDP
Konakalla Narayana Sreenivas Rao
TDP
N Sivaprasad 
TDP
Murali Mohan
TDP
Pradhan Baruah,
BJP
Kaushalendra Kumar
JDU
Meenakshi Lekhi
BJP
Maheish Girri
BJP
Dr Udit Raj
BJP
Sanjay Singh
AAP
Kirit Premjibhai Solanki
BJP
Ramesh Chander Kaushik
BJP
Vishnu Dayal Ram
BJP
 
 
PK Sreemathi
CPM
Sampath Anirudhan
CPM
CN Jayadevan
CPM
Innocent 
Independent
ET Mohammed Basheer
IUML
Anto Anthony
INC
P Karunakaran
CPM
M B Rajesh
CPM
Faizal
NCP
 
Sharadkumar Maruti Bansode,
BJP
Supriya Sule
NCP
Prof Ravindra gaikwad
Shiv Sena
Dhananjay Mahadik
NCP
A T Nana Patil
BJP
Vinayak B Raut
Shiv Sena
Krupal Tumane
Shiv Sena
Rajan Baburao
Shiv Sena
Bhavana Gawali
Shiv Sena
Raju Shetti
Swabhimana Paksha
Sambaji Raje Bhonsle
BJP
Ashok Chavan
INC
Hansraj Ahir
BJP
Adhalrao Patil
Shiv Sena
Dilipkumar Gandhi
BJP
Ashok Nete
BJP
Bandi Jadhav
Shiv Sena
Manohar Naik
NCP
Neelay Naik
BJP
Adsul, Shri Anandrao 
Shiv Sena
Anil (Alias Padmakar) Gulabrao Shirole
BJP
Shri Harishchandra Deoram Chavan, 
BJP
Shri Sanjay Shamrao Dhotre, 
BJP
Sunil Gaikwad
BJP
Dr. Heena Vijaykumar Gavit
BJP
Smt. Raksha Nikhil Khadse
BJP
Shri, Madhukarrao Yashwantrao
NCP
Shri Sadashiv Kisan Lokhande
Shiv Sena
Kapil Moreshwar Patil
BJP
Arvind Sawant
BJP
Ramesh Shewale
Shiv Sena
Valse Patil
NCP
Vinay Sahasrabudhe 
BJP

Our Team

Convenors

Rajeshree Nagarsekar,  
Pubisher of Evescape & Political Activist.

Tara Krishnaswamy,  
Author & Activist, Co-founder Citizens For Bengaluru

The Shakti Team

  • Ammu Joseph – NWMI, Independent Journalist
  • Dhanya Rajendran – Co-founder & Editor-In-Chief, The News Minute
  • Vidya Subrahmaniam, Sr Fellow, The Hindu Centre for Public Policy
  • Nisha Agarwal, ex-CEO Oxfam
  • Nisha Susan, Partner Grist Media/Ladies Finger 
  • Cynthia Stephen, Writer, independent Researcher and Journalist
  • Jyoti Raj, Co-founder CERI
  • Padmaja Shaw, Retd Prof of Journalism, Osmania University 
  • Swarna Rajagopalan, Political Analyst & Social Entrepreneur
  • Flavia Agnes, Women’s Rights Lawyer
  • Bhanupriya Rao, Founder genderandpolitics.org, Independent Researcher & Writer