**Bhubaneswar:** In sequel to dashing a letter to the Prime Minister day before yesterday for his personal intervention into making the pending Women Reservation Bill passed in Parliament soon, Odisha Chief Minister today wrote to all the Chief Ministers of 29 States and Union Territories seeking their support for passing the pending bill.
Yesterday, the BJD supremo has also decided as well as deputed his senior party leaders to meet and submit memorandum to all the national and regional parties in this respect.
The Odisha Chief Minister in his letter to all his counterparts has mentioned that women play a significant role in nation and society building. If women are empowered, the nation is empowered and thus development can be expedited. Unless and until, women are empowered, not a single family, society, state or nation can move forward.
He has also argued in his letter that women constitute half of the total population in India. Hence, their active participation in policy-making decisions will further strengthen our democratic system.
Also, he has cited the glaring example of legendary Biju Babu, who was the first-ever Chief Minister in India to implement 33% reservation for women in the panchayats, urban local bodies and government jobs in 1990. Taking a cue, the BJD government in Odisha has enhanced that reservation to 50% since 2011.
As the Constitution of India lays utmost stress on gender equality, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has been focusing on it and for which a resolution on 33% reservation for women, both for Parliament and State Legislatures, has been unanimously passed in Odisha Assembly recently.
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