NEW DELHI – Prime Minister Narendra Modi's call for only female lawmakers to address the Indian parliament on International Women's Day included silence because there weren't enough women to speak.
Of 543 elected members in the lower house, only 62 are women — or 12 percent — and not all of them were prepared to address the assembly.
Those who spoke Tuesday talked about issues including allowing women's entry into Hindu temples and better education for girls. They also demanded renewed effort in passing long-stalled legislation to require that 33 percent of lawmakers be women.
After all the women who wanted to speak had taken their turns, there was enough time left for the Speaker to ask the men in the house for input on the day's agenda.