Where Are Delhi’s Female MPs? National Capital Fails to Elect Women to Lok Sabha, Only 9 Made it to House Since 1951 – News18


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In terms of Lok Sabha seats, New Delhi has given maximum women --- five --- followed by Karol Bagh with four women. (Getty)

In terms of Lok Sabha seats, New Delhi has given maximum women — five — followed by Karol Bagh with four women. (Getty)

The maximum number of women elected in a poll was two — that too only thrice in 1971, 1996 and 1998. The analysis also shows that no woman was elected more than twice

In the 68-year period starting 1951, just nine women have been elected to the Lok Sabha from the national capital, official data analysed by News18 shows. Sucheta Kripalani, Sushma Swaraj, Meira Kumar, Krishna Tirath and Meenakshi Lekhi were the few names that were elected from Delhi in the 17 Lok Sabha polls.

The maximum number of women elected in a poll was two — that too only thrice in 1971, 1996 and 1998. The analysis also shows that no woman was elected more than twice.

The journey for Lok Sabha elections in Delhi dates back to India’s first general election in 1951. That year, the city elected Kripalani from New Delhi. She was re-elected in 1957 from the same seat.

In the next two Lok Sabha elections, the city did not elect any women. In 1967, the total number of Lok Sabha seats in Delhi increased to seven. As per a rough estimate, excluding the by-polls, Delhi has elected around 100 candidates in the 14 Lok Sabha elections held after 1967. Only 12 times the candidate was a woman.

In 1971, the city elected two women — Mukul Banerjee from New Delhi and Subhadra Joshi from Chandni Chowk. The next two elections — 1977 and 1980 — saw no women elected. The same happened in the 1989 and 1991 elections.

In total, six out of 17 times, the city did not elect any woman, while it elected one woman eight times. Three times the city elected two women in Lok Sabha.

Sundarwati Nawal Prabhakar was elected from Karol Bagh in 1984. In 1996 and 1998, BJP’s Swaraj and Congress’ Kumar were elected from Delhi. Swaraj was elected from the South Delhi seat while Kumar was from Karol Bagh.

In 1999, BJP’s Anita Arya bagged the Karol Bagh seat. Post 1999, Delhi elected two women — each given two terms.

In 2004 and 2009, Congress’ Tirath was the only female MP from Delhi. In the next two elections, in 2014 and 2019, it was BJP’s Lekhi.

In terms of political parties, only Congress and BJP have given female MPs to the city. Six women were elected as Congress candidates and three as BJP. However, in the first Lok Sabha, Kripalani fought as a Kisan Mazdoor Praja Party candidate and later switched to Congress.

In terms of Lok Sabha seats, New Delhi has given maximum women — five — followed by Karol Bagh with four women. South and North West Delhi have elected women twice.

In 2019, there were 16 women candidates of the total 164, and only Lekhi made it to the House. That year, the Congress had fielded its three-time chief minister Sheila Dikshit. She was second in the North East Delhi seat while BJP’s Manoj Tiwari bagged the seat.

Another failed candidate from 2019 was Aam Aadmi Party’s Atishi, who is now a cabinet minister in Delhi. She fought from the East Delhi Lok Sabha seat and stood third after BJP winning and Congress at the second position.

Delhi will go for polls again on May 25. The notification will be issued on April 29 and the last date for filing nominations will be May 6. While there is still time for the city to go into poll mood, candidates who were finalised have started their campaign.

BJP has named Bansuri Swaraj from New Delhi and Kamaljeet Sehrawat from West Delhi — two women in the list of seven candidates. AAP, contesting in alliance with Congress, has not named any women in the four seats it is contesting. Congress, contesting on three seats, is yet to name its candidate.

There are 1.47 crore voters in the city, including 67.30 lakh women. The number of women voters in the 80+ category have surpassed men. The counting of the votes will take place on June 4.

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