New Delhi | Piyush Aggarwal/Anurag Mishra: With only a few days remaining in the 17th Legislative Elections in Bihar, it is interesting to note that in the last four assembly elections, the percentage of women representatives is decreasing. The number of women legislators was 34 (14%) in 2010, which got reduced to 28 (11.5%) in 2015. In 2005, the performance of women candidates was abysmal in the election held in February when only three women were elected. This number improved in the second election held again in October-November 2005 when 25 women managed to become MLAs in the Legislative Assembly of 243 members.

In 2015, more women voted than men by seven percentage points with a voter turnout of 56.66 percent, which included 53.32 percent male and 60.48 percent women voters. The 28 women MLAs elected included ten from Rashtriya Janata Dal, nine from Janata Dal-United, four each from Bharatiya Janata Party and Indian National Congress, and 1 Independent. It is also interesting to note that all the ten women candidates from RJD won from their ticket, while 9 out of 10 women candidates from JD(U) registered their victory. At the same time, Congress fielded five women candidates, and four of whom won the election, while only 4 out of 14 women candidates from BJP were able to win. The educational level of women in the 2015 assembly was lower than in the 2010 assembly.

In 2015, out of 28 elected women legislators, 8 won the election with a massive margin of more than twenty thousand votes over their nearest rival. This number was 13 in 2010, including 9 women from JD(U) and four from BJP.

The elections in 2020 will be held in three phases, with voting taking place on October 28, November 3, and November 7. The results will be announced on November 10. In the first phase, 71 seats will go to polls on October 28. On November 3, voting will be held in 94 seats in the second phase, and on November 7, the remaining 78 seats will go for polling in the third and final phase.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta