Dr Fauzia Khan is a distinguished politician and an educationist who can also be at the moment a Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra. She is the Nationwide President of the Nationalist Mahila Congress- the Girls’s Wing of the Nationalist Congress Social gathering (NCP). She is a former State Minister of the Maharashtra authorities. She served as a member of the Legislative Council, Maharashtra’s higher home, twice.
Dr Fauzia Khan can also be the President of the Federation of All Maharashtra Minority Schooling Organisation (FAME) and the Director of various academic establishments in Parbhani. She was additionally the state’s first Muslim lady minister within the Maharashtra authorities.
In dialog with FII, Dr Fauzia Khan underscores challenges affecting minorities and ladies within the nation in the present day. She additionally voices the necessity for the Girls’s Reservation Invoice, emphasises the significance of ladies taking part actively in politics, and displays on her political profession.
FII: Had been you all the time concerned about politics and fascinated by this discipline? Had been you politically lively and conscious whenever you have been younger?
Dr Fauzia Khan: No. As a toddler, I didn’t know something until I obtained into politics, I didn’t know what politics is. And I didn’t have any such ambition. However as a toddler, I did have management qualities as I mirror upon them now. As a result of I used to guide groups of kids and all that within the play actions. So I feel I had it in me, however I didn’t realise it at the moment.
FII: You have been an educationist, earlier than becoming a member of politics. So what made you be part of politics? Was the aim the identical in each fields and if it was, what was the aim?
Dr Fauzia Khan: See, for me, it was all future on a regular basis. So it was purely, future, as I take it personally. However in the event you see it from a political angle, I really feel this chance got here to me by means of our chief Sharad Pawar Ji, who appears round for potential girls who can take up these roles. And likewise I feel I’m one of many beneficiaries of that outlook. I labored in schooling, even that got here in, as you understand, life rolls on, as a result of I used to be married in a spot the place there have been only a few good faculties. After which when it got here as much as my youngsters being despatched to high school, that point, I realised that there have been no faculties the place I want to ship my youngsters. So then my husband suggested me that “why don’t you begin a faculty of your personal, so that you could keep requirements, and the youngsters can get educated right here together with different youngsters.”
In order that’s how I started my schooling profession. And I began a faculty which took off effectively, and I earned a reputation or popularity by means of that faculty within the small city of Parbhani. And that’s how folks began understanding me.
And someday, the NCP, the district president from right here, approached me that for the municipal councils, there’s a reservation for ladies. So would you wish to contest this election as a result of it is a direct election? And it’s a roaster for ladies. So at that time limit, I used to be very reluctant. I didn’t wish to get into politics. Until that point, I had believed that politics was not a sphere for good folks. And that’s why I refused. I didn’t wish to do it, as a result of I didn’t think about it a clear discipline. However my household, needed me to present it a attempt. Particularly my father-in-law, who was a lawyer. And he was somewhat into politics at the moment. So he stated, “Why don’t you attempt as a result of it’s such an enormous alternative.”
And in the meantime, what occurred, my husband and my father-in-law stored on attempting to steer me. However in the meantime, this roster for ladies was cancelled, and there was a roster for basic elections like the overall class. So despite that, then I made a decision to contest that election. And eventually, my thoughts was made up as a result of what made me satisfied, was my husband stated that you’re performing some work in schooling. However in the event you go to a broader discipline, it is possible for you to to do a lot wider work by means of that. So I believed, Sure, it is a good alternative that we will do constructive work additionally by means of this.
Okay. So after I contested this election, I obtained the recognition to the primary degree, however then I nonetheless misplaced by a really slim margin. As a result of at the moment, that communal card was performed. And eventually, I misplaced that election with a really, very slim margin. And my social gathering chief that’s honourable Sharad Pawar Ji seen the best way we campaigned and the best way I obtained the social gathering from, it was on the fourth or fifth quantity. I introduced it to quantity 2. So then my social gathering approached me I imply, Honourable Sharad Pawar Ji himself approached me. And he provided the place within the Legislative Council to me and that “we wish to take you there in the event you’re .” And that’s how instantly I got here to the Legislative Council. Then for six years, I used to be a member of the legislative council. I carried out effectively there and I obtained the President’s Award for it. Then once more, yet another time, he made me a governor’s nominee this time he gave me a ministry within the Maharashtra cupboard, as a Minister of State, And that time period after that time period was accomplished.
Our authorities itself you understand, misplaced, and the BJP authorities took over so there was a 5-year hole however even throughout that point, Sharad Pawar Ji made me the nationwide president for NCP girls. And, then in a while, I used to be despatched to the Rajya Sabha. In order that’s my journey, a political journey.
FII: How has politics modified over time, like, as you talked about that it was a bit communal again then whenever you have been contesting the elections, after which you’re in the present day a Rajya Sabha member? And what was it like so that you can be a Muslim minister within the Maharashtra cupboard?
Dr Fauzia Khan: So far as being a Muslim minister within the cupboard, I didn’t discover any type of bias. I used to be all the time appreciated for all my enter.
FII: There’s a lack of illustration of Muslims and Dalits and different minorities within the Indian political sphere, due to which to a terrific diploma, points associated to minorities stay considerably unaddressed. So would you say lack of illustration is resulting in unaddressed points associated to minorities?
Dr Fauzia Khan: There’s a lack of illustration, which is resulting in a scarcity of welfare schemes, and a scarcity of the need for welfare, however on the similar time, even this appears to be like an enormous hope to attain illustration.
So illustration right here, you understand, I’m there however we’re in such a small minority, that what we converse hardly issues as a result of in the present day, the BJP has obtained the numbers. And no matter we are saying solely comes on report, however nothing comes out of it. That’s my feeling.
FII: So, speaking about illustration, obtained me pondering, concerning the girls’s reservation invoice, which has been pending for therefore a few years. So, the truth that “India ranks twentieth from the underside when it comes to illustration of ladies in parliament“, what does that imply to you, like, and ladies normally?
Dr Fauzia Khan: So the Girls’s Reservation Invoice has been lingering within the parliament now for nearly a century. However this time, the ladies of India actually have hope, as a result of if the Modi authorities possesses the numbers, nothing can cease the Modi authorities. They consider that ladies must be empowered, however the precise motion shouldn’t be there. And the actual motion can be the invoice to be introduced into parliament and which could be simply handed as a result of they’ve the numbers. So I don’t know why it’s not carried out. As a result of earlier, we had so many events who have been conflicting over issues with one another, however in the present day, that’s not the state of affairs. So no matter is being stated, and no matter is being acted upon, there’s a huge hole between that.
Additionally Learn: Muslim Girls In Indian Politics: Reservation Proposed by the AIMMM
FII: What can be the rationale that we’re nonetheless dragging our toes on the Girls’s Reservation Invoice and nonetheless have didn’t make it a actuality even after greater than 70 years the invoice remains to be pending.
Dr Fauzia Khan: At present, the Modi authorities is patting its again that we’ve obtained so many ladies in parliament, nevertheless it’s such a shameful factor as a result of even in the present day, we solely have come as much as 14% within the parliament. When the nation was impartial, when it grew to become impartial in 1947, girls’s illustration within the parliament was 5%. At present it’s 14%. So we’ve solely we’ve grown solely 9% in 75 years. The place in some nations on the earth this quota has made girls you understand, come as much as 60% illustration and nations like Rwanda, in Cuba and different Latin American nations. Even in Dubai, within the UAE, we’ve 50% illustration for ladies.
So India is much far behind and nonetheless patting its again that we’re doing a lot for ladies. So it’s an enormous paradox. And I feel it’s time we’ve been elevating this in Parliament, again and again, all the opposition retains unanimously saying that convey the ladies’s reservation invoice, nevertheless it’s not being introduced.
FII: Even when girls do come from political backgrounds, it’s nonetheless a troublesome determination for them to affix politics. So what would you concentrate on girls who do by no means come from political backgrounds, and wish to be part of politics?
Dr Fauzia Khan: Should you look throughout the canvas of ladies who’re there within the Lok Sabha or the assemblies, you will notice that the majority of them, virtually all of them are from girls who’re from political backgrounds households, proper households who’ve a political background. So it’s very troublesome for a lady who shouldn’t be from a political background to get elected. It’s virtually subsequent to unimaginable. I feel simply there should be one or two examples, and the entire thing, however then this reservation solely is usually a answer to it, as a result of the reservation within the native self-government has proven that ladies, the state of affairs of ladies can enhance.
And solely a day earlier than yesterday I used to be in a district referred to as Amravati in Maharashtra. And I went to five or 6 locations and totally different Talukas the place we felicitated girls sarpanchs. And after I was felicitating, these girls sarpanches from the Gram Panchayat, I, you understand, noticed that the majority of them virtually all of them have been educated girls who appeared you understand, absolutely competent to do the work on their very own.
FII: Reflecting in your earlier reply, how vital it’s for ladies to become involved in politics actively?
Dr Fauzia Khan: It could positively enhance politics it might convey a couple of huge change I really feel as a result of it feels minutely research the questions raised by girls notably, proper they take care of human growth points. most questions that ladies increase take care of human growth points like well being like schooling, which is the actual parameter for the event of any nation.
Like issues about malnutrition, issues about girls’s well being issues concerning the high quality of schooling, girls are likely to concentrate on these points whereas males are likely to focus extra on infrastructural points. So most questions are raised by males, and most debates raised by males are associated to infrastructure. And if growth must be healthful, each human growth and infrastructural growth are crucial for any nation. So I feel 50% of Girls must be there in politics, and 50% in Human Growth accordingly, or will happen in response to my pondering.
FII: More often than not, what occurs that ladies are restricted to sure portfolios? For instance, Girls and Baby Growth. What do you say about that?
Dr Fuazia Khan: It does occur. However that change can come on later. I really feel proper now we have to focus extra on rising the illustration. As a result of slowly even this, change is coming in in the present day we’ve a Finance Minister who’s a girl, and he or she’s doing that so competently. So I feel extra examples will are available and they need to are available. Girls ought to get higher portfolios.
Additionally Learn: Why Are Girls Underneath-Represented In Politics?
FII: What would you say to folks normally, and ladies particularly, who suppose that politics shouldn’t be a part of our life and are averse to it?
Dr Fauzia Khan: I’d say even initially, I had believed in such pondering, however my expertise has proven me that, sure, we will make an enormous distinction. And we should be in politics as a result of politics is an integral a part of our on a regular basis life. And until we’re concerned in policymaking, we can’t convey a couple of transition in our personal lives. So it impacts us absolutely. And that’s the reason we must be politically conscious. We must be financially and legally conscious as effectively. As a result of right here girls are typically very weak.
FII: What’s the reason behind the rising violence in the direction of minorities, which has pushed them to the periphery over time, and the way can this be addressed?
Dr Fauzia Khan: See this, sadly, politics has change into filthy. And with a view to accumulate the votes of sure communities, this hate and this type of agenda have been propagated purposely. And due to that violence is happening. And clearly, in any nation, the weak and the disadvantaged are going to be on the victimised finish.
And that’s the reason there’s a nice want for the general public to know that that is only a recreation by politicians, to learn themselves. And that’s the reason until we cease politics, regarding communities, and it simply turns into about human beings normally, issues won’t change. In order that’s how now as a public, we have to begin engaged on it. And the general public has to change into conscious.