The 13% rise in the number of women voters compared to the 2013 Assembly elections is no doubt a good sign in a democratic set up. But, relatively, the number of women candidates fielded by all main political parties is abysmally low, although the total number has gone up from 170 in 2013 to 219 this year.
At 15, Congress has fielded the highest number of women candidates this time. But, even that is a mere 6.8%. While the BJP has officially given seats to five women (2.3%), the JD(S) has named six women in their list (2.75%). As many as 53 candidates are contesting as Independents.
Ironically, the Mahila Empowerment Party (MEP), which is led by a woman, has also fielded only 12 women candidates.
This is hardly a surprise if you look at Karnataka’s track record. In 2013, the total number of women candidates in the fray was 170, nearly 6% of the total number of candidates. While the Congress and BJP gave a mere 10 and seven tickets, respectively, to women, the JD(S) gave only six. Sixty seven women contested as Independent candidates.
Click here to read the full article published by The Hindu on 28 April 2018.