THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The CPM-led government may well describe the Loka Kerala Sabha as the state’s latest contribution to democracy, but female presence at the maiden summit leaves a lot to be desired. A quick scan of the rolls show that a mere 26 of the 351-strong Loka Kerala Sabha - 7.4 per cent - are women. Of the 26, eight are MLAs, and one is Lok Sabha MP P K Sreemathi. All MLAs and MPs from the state become Loka Kerala Sabha members by default anyway. The fact did not go unnoticed, by the way.
Ending a brief speech on Friday evening, Gita Gopinath, Harvard professor and adviser to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, pointed out that there was no shortage of accomplished Malayali women and she would like to see more of them in the next edition.Of the 26, not everyone turned up on Friday, but actor Revathi made it to the presidium as the lone female member.
The ‘Rest of India’ division has Revathi, writer Anita Nair, Lathika Balakrishnan, Bindu Jayan Ezhuvathra, Prema Menon, Priya Pillai and singer K Chitra. ‘West Asia’ has Asha Sarath and Marina Jose, while ‘Europe and the Americas’ has Anitha Pullayil, Sr Dony Mary, Sony Solomon, Vidya Abhilash and Sr Mello FCC. Only three women are listed in the ‘Eminent NRK’ division - Nilambur Ayisha, actor Shobhana and Sunitha Krishnan.