The women's reservation bill is back in focus ahead of Parliament's Winter session with several opposition parties, including JD(U) and BJD which had once opposed the move, demanding that it be introduced and passed in this session.

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Tuesday demanded passage of the women's reservation bill in the Winter Session of Parliament. BJD Rajya Sabha member Sasmit Patra raised the issue at an all-party meet convened by the government a day before the session begins, saying empowerment of women is necessary for the overall development of the country.

"On behalf of my party, the BJD, I demanded that the women reservation bill be passed in the winter session," Patra told reporters after the meeting. BJD leader and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and the party are committed to the cause of women empowerment, the MP said. The bill which seeks to

reserve one-third of seats in Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies for women could not be passed by the 15th Lok Sabha.

Earlier last year, TMC Parliamentary Party Leader in Rajya Sabha Derek O'Brien also raised the demand for women's reservation bill and slammed the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) which promised the said bill in its 2014 election manifesto.

The Women's Reservation Bill was initially introduced in the parliament on September 12, 1996 by the United Front government of HD Deve Gowda. As per this bill, the seats will be reserved on a rotational basis. The seats would be determined by a draw of lots in such a way that a seat would only be reserved once in every three consecutive general elections. 

After its reintroduction, the bill was passed by Rajya Sabha on March 9, 2010, but it was still left pending in Lok Sabha. 
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