Women in India Influence Local Politics
By 2009, women’s grassroots political representation in India had reached 50%. Prior to the 73rd Amendment Act in 1992, women were often restricted from elected positions. The act changed that by reserving at least one-third of the seats of all Panchayat Councils and one-third of all Pradhan (head of the Panchayat) for women. Since its inception, women Panchayat Raj (village committee) leaders have become increasingly involved in their communities, ensuring that issues such as quality healthcare and education, as well as the financial considerations necessary to realize access to these services, are discussed at meetings. As a result of their participation, there was a 62% increase of potable water projects in these communities initiated by a woman leader, as compared to communities with male leaders.