S. Phangnon Konyak has made history by becoming the first Naga woman to be nominated as Vice Chairperson of Rajya Sabha, India’s Upper House of Parliament. Hailing from Oting village in Nagaland, her nomination marks a significant milestone in Naga women’s representation in the political sphere, especially in the parliament.
A Historic Moment for Naga Women
The nomination of S. Phangnon Konyak to the panel of Vice Chairpersons in Rajya Sabha is a landmark achievement for both her and Naga women as a whole. It is the first time in the history of the Upper House that there is an equal representation of women members in the panel of Vice Chairpersons. This move is a crucial step towards achieving better gender representation and inclusivity in the Indian political landscape.
Smt @phangnon taking the oath as Rajya Member making history as the first Women Rajya Member from Nagaland & the first @BJP4India MP from Nagaland. Attended the event with @jacob_zhimomi & @YanthungoPatton pic.twitter.com/wniowqZUEH
— Mmhonlumo Kikon (@MmhonlumoKikon) April 4, 2022
Her Political Journey
Phangnon Konyak is the State President of Bhartiya Janta Party Mahila Morcha and has been actively involved in politics for several years. In March 2022, she made history by becoming the first Naga woman to be elected to the Rajya Sabha. She won the election unopposed from the lone Nagaland seat that went into polls on March 31. Her victory is a remarkable achievement, considering the limited representation of Naga women in the parliamentary history of India.
Nagaland’s Second Woman Parliamentarian
Notably, Phangnon Konyak is only the second woman parliamentarian from Nagaland since 1977. The first woman to represent the state in Lok Sabha was Late Rano Shaiza. Konyak’s presence in the Rajya Sabha adds to the political prominence of Naga women in the country and breaks a decades-long barrier.
A Historic Move by Rajya Sabha
The reconstitution of the panel of Vice Chairpersons by Rajya Sabha Chairman Jagdeep Dhankhar has made history by having an equal representation of women. Among the new vice-chairpersons, S. Phangnon Konyak stands out as the first-ever woman from Nagaland to be elected as a member of the Rajya Sabha. Her fellow women members on the panel include P T Usha, Fauzia Khan, Sulata Deo, V Vijaysai Reddy, Ghanshyam Tiwari, L Hanumanthaiah, and Sukhendu Sekhar Ray.
A Positive Shift towards Inclusivity
The presence of first-term parliamentarians like Phangnon Konyak in the panel of Vice Chairpersons signifies a positive shift towards inclusivity and representation of diverse voices. It is a crucial step in breaking the gender barriers that have long persisted in Indian politics.