Indian women in Politics of India

India is perhaps one among the only few countries where women never fought for voting rights. They got it from the day one of independent India. If we look at the current position of women in Indian democracy from an outsider’s view point, it’s the most politically empowered country of the world for women. President of India, president of the ruling coalition of the central government, Speaker of Lok Sabha and chief ministers of National capital Territory and the most populous Indian state are women. However, when we look into the position of Indian women in politics analytically, we find three completely different pictures.

Indian women in Politics

Indian Women in Politics

If King has no son, then daughter/wife is the successor

More than 85% of the Indian women active in politics belong to this category. To name a few are Mrs. Pratibha patil, Sonia Gandhi, Meira Kumar, Sheila Dixit, Rabri Devi etc. Even the greenhorns of Indian politics like D. Purandeswari, Kanimozhi, Supriya Sule, Mehbooba Mufti, Agatha Sangma and others also belong to the same category. They are related to somehow directly or indirectly with people who were the kings or king makers of the power corridor. If we discuss about second generation women politicians of this type, they have got party tickets and got elected only because their father/husband are prominent figures of today’s politics. Most of them are unaware the ground realities as from childhood to become a leader or minister; they spent 80% of their life in abroad. Their growing number is an alarm for the health of Indian politics.

When Glamour fades politics adds colors

They constitute near about 2-3% active Indian women politicians. Prominent among them are Jayalalitha, Hemamalini, Jaya Bachhan, Jayaprada and Smruti Irani. Let the case of Jayalaitha as a different one as she won elections even after death of MGR. These actors-turned- politicians use their glamour and cine popularity to win elections and in 99% cases they become successful. They have zero idea regarding the issues cropping up at the ground level and they have very poor track record of attending parliament and legislative assembly sessions.

Struggles made them leaders

In the present era, Mayawati and Mamta Banerjee, Uma Bharti and few others come under this category. They fought with the odds of the male dominance, caste politics and chauvinistic restrictions to reach the position. After reaching the position, how far they have been successful in maintaining transparency and honesty- that is a different question. But, they have shown the road to power corridor to ordinary Indian women.

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