Rajya Sabha rejects private member bill for widows welfare
Rajya Sabha on Friday rejected a private member's resolution which sought suitable legislation for the welfare of widows in the country, following a division of votes. The resolution was moved by DMK leader Tiruchi Siva on August 10, 2018. After a discussion on Friday, the resolution was put to vote when Siva refused to withdraw the same expressing unhappiness over the Minister of State for Child and Women Welfare Virendra Kumar's reply on the issue. Unsatisfied with a voice vote, Siva asked for a division of votes (electronically).
As many as 35 members voted against the resolution, while 23 favoured it and one remains to absent out of total 59 members who were present. Apart from the minister, Parliament Affairs Minister Vijay Goel had also requested Siva to withdraw the resolution. Siva was of the view that in the present scenario, the benefits or social security available for widows in the country are insufficient. He asked how can a widow survive on a pension of Rs 6 per day.
He said that she is not only rejected by her family but is also treated as an outcast by the entire society after the death of her husband and in this situation, there are no laws or legislation for them. Siva said that there are five crore widows in the country and they should get benefits of social security, psychological consultation and legal services irrespective of the cast, religion and social status. However, the minister listed the efforts of the government that directions have been giving to put names of widows in the death certificate, provide legal services and widow pension.
He also said that district widow cells are being set up which would coordinate with other districts' cells for effective social security of widows in the country. Besides, he said that one-stop centre by women police is being set up to protect widows from domestic violence and instructions have been given for organising skill developments camps for them. The minister also said that a widow home has been built in Vrindavan and many such can be set up on request of other states. However, the opposition members including from the Congress and the Samajwadi Party expressed dissatisfaction with the minister's reply.
They pressed for passing the resolution by the division of votes and raised slogans accusing the BJP of being anti-women. They argued with BJP members over the resolution and pressed for passing the resolution.
(With inputs from agencies.)
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