Things turned ugly at St George’s School in Alaknanda on Wednesday, when hundreds of parents from the Economically Weaker Section (EWS), disadvantaged (DG) category, SC, ST, and OBC categories gathered outside the premises to protest against a recent notice issued by the school to them.According to the notice issued by school principal on December 18: “Schools are not bound to give free education to minority groups. For the last two years, we have been continuously informing you about this. Now, the school cannot extend the duration of your child’s free education in view of the rising expenditures.”Agitated parents gheraoed the school and demanded an immediate withdrawal of the notice. Officials at the Delhi government said the school, which is built on DDA land, will be served a notice on Thursday as it can’t issue such notice to existing students.
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Thousands of unemployed youths can look forward to getting a government job now. Thanks to a timely and wise decision by Vasundhara Raje government of granting one per cent separate reservation to Gurjars and four other communities in Most Backward Class (MBC) category. Gurjar community may be skeptical about the move but it has paved way to fill up 72,000 posts in the government; the recruitment process for which was stuck because of reservation tangle.For last two years, 72,000 posts in 13 different categories and departments could not be filled because of OBC reservation act. Among them 55,000 posts were those for which notification had been issued. In fact, the government had to extend application deadline five times for level 2 of REET teachers’ recruitment 2016, whereas second grade teachers’ recruitment result was not declared for six months.The recruitment process was stalled only because of reservation issue but now everything is clear as Raje government has made a provision by which Gurjars and four other communities will enjoy one per cent separate reservation in MBC and continue to receive OBC reservation benefits as well.Though, the Gurjar community is still not convinced and threatening to launch stir once again.Notably, the SBC reservation got stuck in the court. The state government had to cancel it. After that, Raje government brought OBC bill to give 5 per cent reservation to Gurjars but before a notification could be issued the matter reached court.Since the overall reservation limit went up to 54%, Supreme Court quashed the bill reiterating its stand that reservation cannot go beyond the cap of 50%. The government discussed the matter with Gurjars and tried to convince them to agree to accept MBC but they refused.However, the government released notification of MBC. Now, the unemployed are eagerly waiting for opening up of the recruitment process.Social justice and empowerment minister, Arun Chaturvedi hailed the decision claiming that MBC will restart stalled recruitment process at speedy level.State president of Berojgar Ekikrat Mahasangh, Upen Yadav, however, demanded that the government should not lose time to restart recruitment process at the same time appointments in old recruitments should be given immediately to fulfill its promise.But, Gurjar leader, Himmat Singh alleged cheating. “The government has duped us. The one percent reservation was available even during the Gehlot government. Instead of keeping youths unemployed, the government could have given this benefit earlier. Our agitation is for 5 per cent reservation will continue. We will oppose the government in upcoming by polls and in assembly elections,” he said.
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Five castes including Gurjars will get one per cent reservation within the 50 per cent legal limit in Rajasthan, a senior minister said here today.The state government took the decision on Thursday to provide reservation to the Gujjar/Gurjar, Banjara/Baldia/ Labana, Gadia-Lohar/Gadalia, Raika/Rebari and Gadaria communities.”The decision was taken to give one per cent reservation to Gurjars and other castes under the most backward category,” said state Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Rathore.A notification will be issued after the governor’s approval, he said.The present overall reservation percentage in the state stands at 49 per cent.The five castes were included in the Other Backward Classes (OBC) list in 1994. After the state cabinet’s decision they can now seek benefits in educational institutions and job opportunities.The Rajasthan Assembly in October this year passed a bill to raise OBC reservation from 21 to 26 per cent to provide five per cent quota to Gurjars and other castes.However, the high court stayed the bill as it would have increased the reservation to 54 per cent.Later, the Supreme Court also directed the state government not to exceed the 50 per cent reservation limit.The government has taken the step in the wake of widespread agitation by the Gurjar community, demanding reservation under the backward class category.
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The BJP always gave priority to the OBC vote-bank that constitutes 45 to 50 per cent of the total vote-bank in the state, but the party could not wrest more seats from the Congress in OBC dominates seats. There are a total of 71 seats in Gujarat in which OBC voters have a say, and the BJP managed to win only 30 of these seats while 41 went in favour of Congress. The BJP faced major losses in regions like North and Central Gujarat and the Saurashtra region. Party’s performance in South Gujarat and urban areas remained good; maximum number of seats were won from these region. Many of BJP’s big faces from the OBC community, like Shankar Chaudhary, Keshaji Chauhan, Ramsinh Rathwa, Hira Solanki, Jasha Barad, Govind Parmar, Mansinh Chauhan, emerged as big losers.Whereas Arjun Modhwadia, Meraman Goria, Dr Nitaben Rathod, Pravin Rathod, Gautam Chauhan, Udesinh Baria, Ashok Jirawala and other lost on Congress tickets.The BJP has been giving special attention to the OBC community ever since PM Narendra Modi came to power in the state as chief minister. He initiated several schemes for OBCs, especially for the fishing community in the Saurashtra and south Gujarat regions.
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Counting of votes will be held tomorrow for the Gujarat Assembly polls, considered a prestige battle for Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his home state and a litmus test for new Congress president Rahul Gandhi.While the BJP is seeking a sixth straight term in office, the Congress is aiming to stage a comeback in power after being in the opposition for over two decades.The results are expected to have a bearing on the 2019 parliamentary polls also as Modi had come to power in 2014, based on the Gujarat ‘model of development’.The much-awaited results of the keenly fought elections will be announced tomorrow when the counting of votes will be held at 37 centres across the state’s 33 districts, amidst tight security.The voting was held following an acrimonious campaign, where both the main political parties indulged in no-holds- barred attacks on each others.Modi led the campaign for the BJP, while Rahul Gandhi was the pivot of the Congress’ electioneering.During the campaign, Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah trained guns on the Congress on issues like Ram Temple, alleged Pakistani interference in the Gujarat polls and (suspended Congress leader) Mani Shankar Aiyar’s remarks.Gandhi persistently attacked Modi and the BJP for “not talking about the future of Gujarat” and skipping key issues being faced by the people of the state.The Congress also stitched about a broad social coalition with prominent Patidar, OBC, and Dalit leaders – Hardik Patel, Alpesh Thakor and Jigesh Mevani – in its bid to unseat the BJP in power for over two decades.Patel led a long agitation of his community for reservation, while Thakor led an counter protest against inclusion of Patidars in the OBC reservation list. Mevani raised his voice against Dalit atrocities.The influential Patidar community, which accounts for around 12 per cent of the state’s population, could prove to be the ‘X factor’ in the polls in which Patel pledged support to the Congress and appealed to people to “uproot the BJP” this time.As the campaign was nearing its end, “Vikas” (development) took a back seat, and caste and religious issues received prominence.The two main rival parties also tried to counter each other on social media, as the Congress and its supporters launched the campaign “Vikas Gando Thayo Che” (development has gone crazy), while the BJP launched a counter drive of “I am development, I am Gujarat”.An average 68.41 per cent polling was recorded in the two-phase Assembly elections in Gujarat.According to the final figures released by the Election Commission, the voter turnout in the second phase of balloting on December 14, for 93 seats of North and Central Gujarat, stood at 69.99 per cent.In the first phase of polls held on December 9 for 89 seats in Saurasthra, Kutch and South Gujarat, 66.75 per cent voting was recorded.The total voter turnout this time has seen a dip of 2.91 per cent, as compared to the 2012 polls when 71.32 per cent polling was registered.In terms of numbers, of the total 4.35 crore registered voters, 2.97 crore exercised their right to franchise in the elections held on December 9 and 14.According to the EC data, the tribal-dominated Narmada district witnessed the highest voter turnout of 79.15 per cent, while Devbhumi-Dwarka of Saurashtra region recorded the lowest at 59.39 per cent.The districts which recorded a high turnout are Tapi (78.56 per cent), Banaskantha (75.15) and Sabarkantha (74.97).The districts which saw a low turnout are Amreli (61.29), Bhavnagar (61.56) and Porbandar (61.86).Out of the total 33 districts, 15 recorded over 70 per cent polling, while 17 others clocked between 60 per cent and 70 per cent.Only Devbhumi Dwarka district registered polling below 60 per cent.
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“Lankesh lives 5 kms from here,” prompt comes the reply from Atul Bhai when asked about the residence of Arvind Trivedi, the actor who had played the famed role of ‘Ravan” in Ramanand Sagar’s magnum opera “Ramayana”.At a time when political discourse in Gujarat gets frequent mention of Ram temple in Ayodhya, the man who played Ravan is very popular in Idar. Trivedi frequently organises the scriptural reading of “Sundar Kaand” of Ramayana. This is perhaps the first election in which he is not campaigning anywhere owing to health reasons.Punching with star power its election exercise in Idar, BJP has fielded noted actor Hiteshbhai Kanodia, son of Gujarati film legend Nareshbhai Kanodia from the reserved constituency of Idar in Sabarkantha. Hitesh, a popular youth icon in Gujrat film industry has featured in BJP’s Hu chhu Vikas, hu chhu Gujarat’ (I am Vikas, I am Gujarat) campaign to counter Congress’Vikas gando thayo chhe’ (development has gone crazy) campaign.Congress candidate Manilal Vaghela could find the going tough in this saffron party stronghold where BJP’s Raman Lal Vora has been winning the seat since 1995. Vora, Gujarat Assembly Speaker and BJP’s Dalilt face in the state has been shifted to Dasada Assembly seat. Since he has represented the Idar seat for over two decades, Vora is also being involved in campaigning in Idar.74-year-old Naresh Kanodia, who is camping in Idar to campaign for his son, says that theirs is not only a film family but also political family, which has been connected with masses.Hitesh used to play his child roles in Gujarati films. The father is now playing his role not only in reel but also real life.”Vora ji has done so much work in this constituency that no body can defeat the BJP here. BJP has fielded our family for the tenth time. My son is a superstar in Gujarati films and a serious candidate here,” he says drawing parallel from the success that NT Rama Rao had got in Tamil Nadu Politics.Naresh Kanodia also took part in BJP’s Gujarat’s Gaurav Yatra in central Guajrat and campaigned in Kheda, Anand, Panchmahal and Dasad.The Idar candidate Hitesh alias Hitubhai has acted in over 100 films and earlier used to play child roles in the movies in which his father was the protagonist. Hitesh had contested the 2012 assembly polls from Kadi seat but lost by less than 1,200 votes. He had got over 83 thousand votes then. In 2007, his father Naresh Bhai Kanodi had lost the Karjan seat in Baroda by a little over 2,000 votes after winning the seat once in 2002.Naresh Bhai’s brother Mahesh Kumar Kanodia had been a four term four-term Lok Sabha MP from Patan Parliamentary seat in North Gujarat in 1991, 1996, 1998 and 2004. He is a well-known singer, who could sing in 32 voices along with Naresh Kanodia.Since 1962, Congress has won the Idar assembly seat only thrice out of the 12 polls, the last being in 1980. Congress is this time riding on Patel anger and banking on Hardik Patel’s reach among Patidats, Alpesh Thakore’s among OBC and Jingesh Mewani’s following among dalits to wrest this seat from BJP after close to four decades.The seat was with Janata Dal, when Vora wrested it for BJP in 1995. Congress candidate Manilal Vahgela had contested the seat in 2007 polls as well but lost to Vora of over 21 thousand votes.In 2012, Congress fielded Ramabhai Solanki but Vora again won the seat, albeit with a reduced margin of over 11 thousand votes., though even this time Vohra increased his votes as in every elections. The contest is all the more bi-polar this time.Sajan Ben Shyamal, the care taker of his house belongs to Thakor (OBC) community. There is a glint in her eyes when asked about Alpesh Thakor, the young OBC leader of the community. A resident of Sardarpura village, she says that most of her community men either work as labours in field of Padtiars or work as housemaids. She says that people of her community of are thinking of voting for Congress now.In Sudatpura village, where a dozen residents are RSS pracharaks, Kamlesh Patel, whose house is in front of Swaminarayan Temple says that he has been voting for the BJP for generations and will do so. “Yes we want anamat. But I did not go to see Hardik Patel when he visited the Town Hall here because he had joined Congress. We had been voting for BJP for generations,” he sums up.Yash Patel, who will turn a voter in 2019, says earlier 80 percent of Patidars votes went to BJP, which could be fifty fifty this time.Since the area has also good number of Patidars, BJP has roped in prominent Patel leader Parshottam Rupala to campaign in Idar on November 11, three days before polling on November 14.Idar, is a manufacturing hub for handmade wooden toys, tiles and is dotted with several architectural monuments.Arvind Trivedi and his brother Upendra Trivedi, a prolific Gujarati cinema actor, who belong to village Kakadia near Idar town brought the area in limelight. Upendra breathed his last in 2015.Arvind who shot into international fame with his ‘Ravan” role had campaigned for BJP in many past elections but of late not keeping well. He left for Mumbai only last week.Trivedi,’s residence “Annapuprna” on Idar Ambaji road is a visual treat and kind of a milestone.An ardent devotee of Lord Rama, the ‘chaupai (four-line verses) of Ramayana are written across the boundary wall of his residence besides a temple of Lord Shiva called “Lankeshwar Mahadev” at his residence.
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<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress which is reaching out to OBCs through social coalitions in Gujarat in this assembly poll, has included young OBC leader from the state Alpesh Thakore in its list of start campaigners, which also has Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.Thakore’s name figures in the last of the 40-member star campaigner list.Thakore, who is founder of the OSS (OBC, SC and ST) Ekta March and is one of triumvirate with Patdiar leader Hardik Patel and Dalit leader Jignesh Mewani , joined Congress after meeting party Vice President Rahul Gandhi in New Deli in the last week of October.Congress has named Thakore a star campaigner apparently to blunt the BJP outreach to OBCs as the ruling party has made elaborate plans to rope in the community as a counter to Congress’ bid to wean away a chunk of Patel votes by siding with Hardik.Along with a host of senior Congress leaders from Centre and the state, the list also has Sam Pitroda, who had organised Rahul Gandhi’s US tour. Pitroda figures on number eight in the list of campaigners.Pitroda, who headed India’s National Knowledge Commission, and served as advisor to former prime minister Manmohan Singh on public information infrastructure and innovation, is currently the Chairman of Congress Overseas Department.Born to Gujarati parents Pitroda, who was a close aide of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi, will travel a number of cities to campaign for Congress had early this month flagged his OBC origin in Gujarat saying “I am a Vishwakarma and the son of a carpenter. Reservation helps in uplifting those who are underprivileged, but that does not stop anyone from achieving his or her own goals.”Even in December 2011 ahead of UP assembly polls 2012, he had accompanied Rahul Gandhi in the Hindi heartland.Rahul had then, trying to reach out to Most Backward Classes, said, “Twenty years back Rajiv Gandhi thought of bringing mobile phones to India. Do you know who brought them? Sam Pitroda, who is a Vishkarma, “Barahi” (carpenter). He brought mobile phones to your houses.”The start campaigner list also includes names of film actress turned Congress leader Nagma and and cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu, who left the BJP and joined Congress in January this year before Punjab elections and is a now a minister in Captain Amarinder Singh government.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It was quite clear that the BJP would show leniency with the OBC community in the 2017 Assembly polls to be held in Gujarat, as the party’s major vote bank, the Patel community, stood against the party on the issue of reservation.The party announced the names of candidates for 70 of the 182 seats and as many as 25 seats have been given to the OBC community leaders. Community wise, OBC has 55 per cent space.Party president Amit Shah had himself indicated from the floor of the last Assembly session held in August and that was again his last day in the house. Shah had said that the core agendas of Gujarat elections would be the OBC community and Narmada project. The party has also seen that the OBC community have not wavered from BJP to any other party in the last 10 years.A very senior leader of the party said, “Ever since Narendra Modi became the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he gave special attention to the OBC community and many castes like Koli, Thakor, Chaudhary and others showed their trust in the BJP in form of votes during every elections thereafter. The community has the greatest vote share in the state. So this is natural that tickets would be given to the community, which has dominance in state.””There are almost 146 castes included the OBC category as per the OBC Commission in the state. But the dominant castes are only 10 to 8 in this category. The party has given preference to such leaders who have great following in thier castes and they are Koli, Thakor, Chaudhary, Ahir and others. This is the best combination and balance of caste equation in Gujarat. The rest of 112 candidates also will be representing different communities,” the leader added.Preferences on the caste cardThe party has given preference to leaders who have a following in thier castes like Koli, Thakor, Chaudhary, Ahir and others.The community has the greatest vote share in the state and it is natural for them to get a large share, said leaders.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>For BJP and Congress, it is a fight for prestige in the Porbandar Assembly constituency over the restoration of the city’s status as Paris of the Saurashtra region and its marketing within and outside India as the birthplace of Mahatma Gandhi.For a change, there is no talk of quota for Patidars or demonetization. But traders cite fall in business after the rollout of GST and submit that BJP needs to bring in further changes to arrest fall in its rating.BJP, which had won the seat in 2012 poll, lists out a number of steps initiated by the government to upgrade the city’s infrastructure and keep its Paris status intact. However, the Congress blames the state government and local administration for the poor state of roads, sewage disposal and holding them responsible for surge in pollution. Both, however, agree that both Porbandar and Paris are magical lands of love and beauty and the architecture is of contemporary age. But they differ in their approach.As far as the city’s importance as Mahatma Gandhi’s birthplace goes, BJP puts the onus on the Congress for doing little for the preservation of its status while in power in the state and at the Centre. On its part, the Congress claims that the BJP has been using the names of Mahatma Gandhi and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel to gain political mileage.This apart, both parties have stepped up efforts to lure politically decisive Other Backward Communities (OBCs), including Kolis and Kharva, Meher and also the Muslim community to win the seat in the ensuing election.The Congress wants to cash in on resentment within the Kharva community over the issue of grant of subsidy in a time-bound manner and lack of substantial development in fishing infrastructure. On the other hand, the BJP is projecting the steps taken by the government for the fishing community, which includes launch of development of port terminal with the investment of Rs 15 crore, construction of jetty, reinstatement of subsidies and introduction of few more.Khimjibhai Motivaras, the BJP’s Porbandar city president, who comes from the Kharva community, told DNA, “Congress president Rahul Gandhi is a ‘parachute’ leader who lacks knowledge of grassroots and, therefore, his party is engaged in luring the Kharva community and fisherfolks in general by neglecting the good work done by the state government. They will vote for the BJP and the party will retain its hold in Porbandar and also in the state.’’Kiritbhai Morwadia, BJP’s OBC cell chief, said of the 146 OBC, 36 communities are in Porbandar alone, and he has been holding everyday workshops for members of two castes to mobilise support.However, Congress leader Ramdevbhai Modhwadia counters BJP’s claims, saying that the Kharva community by and large is angry with the party for its neglect, while members of Meher and other castes from OBC want a change and they will vote for Congress.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Congress party has agreed to Patidar leader Hardik Patel’s demands and will field eight candidates that he has recommended for the upcoming assembly elections in Gujarat.According to senior Congress leader, apart from reservations for the Patidar community, Hardik had asked for tickets in seven-to-eight Gujarat assembly constituencies mostly. “Hardik’s demands are very reasonable. We had no problem to fielding strong candidates from the Patidar community. For the rest of the state that are dominated by Patidar, he has asked us to field strong Congress candidates,” a party member informed.Jignesh Mewani,the Dalit youth leader had recently met Rahul Gandhi. Jignesh refused to join Congress but assured that he would support Congress party candidates in Gujarat elections.“Mewani had made some specific demands for Dalit welfare and development which are already accepted by Congress leadership. He told us that the Congress should give ticket to credible and efficient candidates that will be acceptable to all OBC, SC,ST and Patidar communities,” the party member added.Meanwhie, OBC leader Alpesh Thakore, who recently joined the party ranks, has been insisting for 10-15 tickets for his loyalists. “Our only condition is that these candidates should have potential to win elections. We cannot select everyone. We will soon declare the candidates,” the source added.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Rajasthan High Court on Thursday put on hold a state government decision to provide reservations for the Gurjar community under the OBC category.The OBC Reservation Bill 2017 aimed to add Gurjars, who had earlier been given reservation under the SBC (special backward category), into the OBC category. The Bill was cleared in the most recent assembly session and increased the OBC quota from 21 per cent to 26 per cent.However, this breached the 50 per cent cap on reservations, taking it to 54 per cent, besides violating a Supreme Court order maintaining status quo on the move.The HC’s order will remain in place until November 13, the date of the next hearing.”As per the order, the government cannot bring about any notification or order related to the Bill till November 13 when it files its reply. We are hopeful the court will strike down the Bill,” said G P Kaushik, counsel for petitioner.The plea, filed by former MLA Gangasahay Sharma, questioned the Constitutional validity of the Bill as well as its violation of the apex court’s order.The court asked the advocate general whether the government wished to implement the provisions of the bill or if it would keep the bill in abeyance till the matter is decided by the SC.The Gurjars, however, are not pleased. “Government has not implemented the reservation the way we wanted,” said Himmat Singh Gurjar, state spokesperson of the Gurjar Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti. “The govt is under pressure of Jat community, who are usurping lion’s share of the reservation.”Parliamentary Affairs Minister Rajendra Rathore dismissed the allegations, saying “All decisions regarding the reservations were taken in consultation with the community representatives.Issues with billGovt Bill to add reservations for Gurjars under OBC category breaches limit of 50 per cent on caste-based reservationsSupreme Court has also ordered a status quo on reservation for the Gurjar community
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Rajasthan High Court today restrained the state government from implementing the provisions in the OBC reservation bill, 2017 aimed at increasing the ceiling of the quota beyond 50 per cent for the benefit of the agitating Gujjar and four other communities.A division bench of the court comprising justices K S Jhaveri and V S Vyas asked Advocate General Narpat Mal Lodha whether the state government wished to implement the provisions under the bill or keep these in abeyance till the matter was decided by the Supreme Court.It was of the view that the Rajasthan government must take prior permission of the apex court before implementing the new provisions sought to be introduced by the bill.Petitioner Ganga Sai Sharma submitted that the state government is keen to implement the provisions in the bill once these were duly approved by the Assembly and once the notification for the act comes into force, it will create complications.He also said it will multiply litigation as the government will give employment against vacancies which will create third party rights.Therefore, it is necessary that the state government be restrained from giving effect to the amended provision in the bill to increase from the OBC reservation ceiling beyond 50 per cent for the benefit of the Gujjar and four other communities, the petitioner said.The court observed that the Rajasthan government wanted to take a populist view and try to use it as a shield to increase reservation.The bench criticised the government’s approach, saying it must proceed to get the Constitution amended instead of bringing piecemeal legislations.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Fissures between various organisations of the Patel community and PAAS leader Hardik Patel have surfaced after the former held a news conference distancing itself from Hardik’s statements.They accused the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) leader of pursuing ‘personal’ agenda at the cost of the community.It should be noted that Hardik had, a few days ago said that he would would support the Congress if they met the demands of reservation for the community.At a news conference held on Sunday under the banner of the Patidar Youth Brigade, Dilip Patel of the Sardar Patel Group (SPG) said the community had negotiated with the government for their demands and every demand other than that of reservation had been met.”This negotiation happened 10 days ago. The interlocutors included representatives of various organisations of the community, businessmen from the community etc. Hardik was also aware of it. The agenda was also discussed and the government clearly told us what they can and cannot do,” said Patel.He said the government agreed all four demands including compensation for those who were killed in the reservation agitation. “But it expressed its inability to give any more compensation under ‘technical grounds’ and so the community came together and donated Rs20 lakh to each of the victims,” said Patel. He said, after this negotiation, Hardik who was kept in the loop all through, went and called the interlocutors agents of the BJP.”It is now turning into a personal agitation of Hardik rather than a fight for the community,” said Patel.Sanjay Patel, trustee of the Vishwa Umiya Foundation, one of the organisations that have opposed Hardik’s stand, said none of the parties had so far agreed to give the community reservation under the OBC category. “That has been our demand from the onset. Hardik is settling for Economically Backward Caste category reservation which even the BJP government was willing to give,” said Patel.To a question on whether the BJP government had promised to give them reservation under the OBC category, he said the government was still exploring the possibility as it was caught in a ‘technical’ glitch.To a question on what the community thought of Varun Patel and Reshma Patel, two former PAAS leaders joining the BJP, different voices seemed to emerge.Sanjay Patel said it was only after the BJP agreed to the four demands of the Patel community that the two joined the party while Kamal Vataliya another leader said the community did not support the move of Varun and Reshma.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With the high-stake Assembly polls approaching in Gujarat, BJP chief Amit Shah on Sunday held separate meetings with key party leaders and workers from the southern, central and northern regions of the state.Shah, who has been camping in Gujarat since yesterday to strategise for the upcoming polls, held meetings with the BJP workers of Valsad, Navsari and Dang districts at the Tata Hall in Navsari town of south Gujarat in the morning. In the afternoon, the BJP president guided the party workers and leaders of the tribal-dominated Panchmahal and Dahod districts in Godhra town. In the evening, Shah reached Himmatnagar town in north Gujarat to hold meetings with the party workers of Sabarkantha and Aravalli districts, said a BJP release.Yesterday, the BJP chief was engaged in similar deliberations with the party workers from Kutch, Morbi, Surendranagar, Bhavnagar, Botad, Amreli and Ahmedabad city. He is scheduled to meet the BJP leaders and workers of the remaining districts and cities in the state till November 9, the release added. The 182-member Gujarat Assembly will go to the polls in two phases — on December 9 and 14 — and counting of votes will be taken up on December 18.Congress likely to take final call on Patel quota The Congress might take a final call on Monday on the issue of promising reservation for Patidars under the OBC category, a condition set by quota spearhead Hardik Patel for extending his community’s support to the party in poll-bound Gujarat, a state party leader said today.This was stated by former Gujarat Congress president Siddharth Patel, who along with Gujarat High Court lawyer Babubhai Mangukiya, met senior party leader and advocate Kapil Sibal here. After the meeting, Patel told reporters that the party high-command might take a call on the issue tomorrow. Hardik has set a condition that he would support the Congress in the Assembly election, due next month, only if the party committed itself to allotting a quota in education and government jobs to his community under the OBC category. He has set November 7 as the deadline for the Congress to make its stand clear on the issue.Sibal said he had conveyed his opinion about the quota to party president Sonia Gandhi. “I have studied the Constitution in detail and given my views (about reservation) to the party high-command,” he told reporters. On his meeting with the Gujarat leaders, Sibal said they discussed the quota issue in detail. “However, the final call on the issue will be taken by the party high-command. I cannot say anything about the issue of reservation (to Patels) as of now,” he said.Siddharth Patel said the Congress high-command was likely to take a call on the issue of reservation for Patels tomorrow. “We have discussed various alternatives during today’s meeting (with Sibal). By tomorrow, the party high-command is expected to take a call on those suggestions (about giving reservations to Patels), following which, we will engage in discussions with Hardik,” he said, adding that the party was “doing its best” to resolve the issue. Mangukiya said the Constitution did not have words such as OBC or EBC (economically backward class) and Patidars should not insist on the OBC quota. The words OBC and EBC are not mentioned anywhere in the Constitution. It mentions only ‘Backward Classes’ and ‘Weaker Section’. Don’t give too much stress on OBC or EBC, the important thing is that they will definitely get reservation,” Mangukiya said, adding that Sibal might come to Gujarat to hold a meeting with Hardik on the issue, if needed.Hardik Patel (24), the face of the quota stir, recently met Congress’ Gujarat affairs in-charge Ashok Gehlot to discuss the quota demand. The issue of OBC quota for Patels remained unresolved during a meeting between Patidar representatives and state Congress leaders on October 30. Trying to do a balancing act, the Congress had promised to offer reservation in jobs and education to Patidars under the EBC category, but not in the other backward class (OBC) group as demanded by the community.The Congress had agreed to various demands of Patidars, including the formation of an SIT to investigate alleged atrocities against the members of the community during a PAAS (Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti) rally in Ahmedabad on August 25-26 last year, if voted to power. The party is trying to wean away the Patidars from the ruling BJP in the state. The community is believed to be a loyal vote bank of the saffron party and its numerical strength can tilt the scales in elections.Prime Minister Narendra Modi had tried to reach out to the Patels on November 2 when he attended the silver jubilee function of the Akshardham temple of the Bochasanwasi Shri Akshar Purushottam Swaminarayan Sanstha (BAPS) in Gandhinagar. He had said that the Patidars had traditionally been with the BJP, “but a section of the community has turned against the party due to the recent agitation for reservation”.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>BJP leader and Union minister Parshottam Rupala on Friday asked the Congress and PAAS leader Hardik Patel to shed some light on whether the Patidar community would be included in the OBC (Other Backward Classes) category for reservation benefits.Rupala’s statement comes a day after Leader of Opposition in the state Assembly Mohansinh Rathwa said it was not possible to carve out a separate quota for Patidars in the existing 49 per cent reservation.”Mohansinh Rathwa’s statement exposes the doublespeak that the Congress and Hardik Patel have been indulging in. Both need to clarify their stand on the issue as Hardik has been demanding reservation under the OBC quota, and the Congress is now saying that it is not possible,” Rupala told media-persons.The BJP leader said that the Congress was silent about granting OBC status to Patidars, and it was now clear that the party as well as Hardik Patel had only been trying to mislead the community ahead of the elections.Speaking at a rally in Valsad on Thursday, Rathwa, an eight-time MLA, had said that Patidars would be given reservation without interfering with the 49 per cent existing quota, which is meant for OBCs, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.The issue of reservation is expected to be a major one in the upcoming elections. While the state government has already announced reservation benefits to all non-reserved communities under the EBC quota, the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) and other Patel organisations are seeking reservation under the OBC quota. The Congress, on the other hand, has assured 20 per cent quota under EBC to non-reserved communities if it comes to power.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The BJP in poll-bound Gujarat today asked Patidar leader Hardik Patel and the Congress to clarify their positions after senior Congress leader Mohansinh Rathwa said it is not possible to carve out a quota for the Patidar community in the existing 49 per cent reservations.Rathwa, Leader of Opposition in the Assembly, made the statement at a rally before party vice president Rahul Gandhi’s arrival at the tribal-dominated Nana Pondha village in Valsad district yesterday.”Patidars will be given reservation without interfering with the current quota of 49 per cent. There will not be any change in the current quota. If we give reservation, it has to be outside that quota,” said Rathwa, a tribal leader and the senior-most Congress MLA in the state.BJP leader and Union minister Parshottam Rupala today said Rathwa’s remarks put both Hardik Patel and the Congress in the dock.”Rathwa spoke his mind. Now both Hardik and Congress need to clarify their stands, as Hardik only wanted reservation under the OBC quota, not under EBC (economically backward classes) category which was offered by the Congress.But opposition leaders are mum about granting the OBC status to Patels,” Rupala said, speaking to reporters here.”As soon as Hardik slided towards Congress, some Congress leaders began suspecting whether there was any secret deal (to include Patels in the OBC category). After Rathwa’s remarks, the Congress should clarify how it would grant reservation to Patidars under the existing OBC quota,” he said.Earlier this week, members of Hardik Patel-led Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS) and the Congress held a meeting and announced that an agreement has been reached on four main demands of the community. But there wasn’t a final agreement on the key demand of the reservation yet, they said.PAAS leaders said they will hold another round of discussions with the Congress by November 7.Earlier, the Gujarat Congress had promised a 20 per cent reservation under the EBC quota to non-reserved communities including Patels if the party came to power.”The fact is, the Congress never said anything about OBC reservations. They only talk about EBC quota. The Gujarat government has already given a 10 per cent quota in EBC. It is now quite clear that the Congress is trying to mislead Patidars with such vague promises,” said Rupala.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The BJP national president Amit Shah has already announced that his party’s mantra will be to win the hearts of OBCs in Gujarat polls. As the OBC communities in Gujarat constitutes around 62 per cent of total vote share, the party has been focusing on about 146 communities that come under this category. To address the community, Shah will arrive in Gujarat on Monday and will hold a convention for OBCs at Fagvel village of Kheda district.Around 50,000 people are expected to gather to listen to the message of BJP’s strategist at Fagvel which has the dominance of Thakor community. This community has the second largest share in OBC community in Gujarat after Koli community. Moreover, Thakors are the committed vote bank of Congress in its fort of central Gujarat where BJP has been trying to create a dent. This is also a region where Gujarat Congress chief Bharatsinh Solanki, former CM Madhavsinh Solanki and other influential leaders of Congress come from.A senior leader of BJP said, “Congress is strong in central Gujarat and to achieve the target of 150, it is necessary to acquire more seats in this region. When Patel community has gone upfront against BJP in the state, BJP is highly dependent on OBC community in the state now. Not only Thakor but people from other communities including Koli, Chaudhary and others also will be invited to Shah’s public meeting.””PM Narendra Modi’s proposed OBC commission will be the major issue which Shah could raise here, as Congress has opposed the same in parliament and this can become a tool for Shah to placate Congress committed communities taking them into favour of BJP,” added the leader.Besides this, Shah will also hold a convention with cooperative sector leaders in Gujarat on Monday evening at Gandhinagar. This convention was scheduled in July along with his North Gujarat region rally but was postponed then following to the floods in the north Gujarat region.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Union Cabinet on Wednesday gave its approval to the norms for establishing equivalence of posts in Government and posts in PSUs, PSBs etc. for claiming benefit of OBC reservations. This addresses an issue pending for nearly 24 years. This will ensure that the children of those serving in lower categories in PSUs and other institutions can get the benefit of OBC reservations, on par with children of people serving in lower categories in Government. This will also prevent children of those in senior positions in such institutions, who, owing to absence of equivalence of posts, may have been treated as non Creamy Layer by virtue of wrong interpretation of income standards from cornering government posts reserved for OBCs and denying the genuine non creamy layer candidates a level playing field.The Union Cabinet also approved the increase in the present income criterion of Rs. 6 lakh per annum for applying the Creamy Layer restriction throughout the country, for excluding Socially Advanced Persons/Sections (Creamy Layer) from the purview of reservation of Other Backward Classes (OBCs).The new income criterion will be Rs. 8 lakh per annum. The increase in the income limit to exclude the Creamy Layer is in keeping with the increase in the Consumer Price Index and will enable more persons to take advantage of reservation benefits extended to OBCs in government services and admission to central educational institutions.These measures are a part of the Government’s efforts to ensure greater social justice and inclusion for members of the Other Backward Classes. The Government has already introduced in Parliament, a bill to provide Constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes. It has also decided to set up a Commission, under section 340 of the Constitution, to sub categorize the OBCs, so that the more backward among the OBC communities can also access the benefits of reservation for educational institutions and government jobs.All these decisions, taken together, are expected to ensure greater representation of OBCs in educational institutions and jobs, while also ensuring that the more under-privileged within the category are not denied their chance of social mobility.Background:In its judgment dated 16.11.1992 in WP(C) 930/1990 (IndraSawhney case) the Supreme Court had directed the Government to specify the basis, for exclusion of socially and economically advanced persons from Other Backward Classes by applying the relevant and requisite socioeconomic criteria.An Expert Committee was constituted in February 1993 which submitted its report on 10.03.1993 specifying the criteria for identification of socially advanced persons among OBCs i.e. the Creamy Layer. The report was accepted by the then Ministry of Welfare and forwarded to DoPT which issued an OM dated 08.09.1993 on exclusion from the Creamy Layer.The OM of 08.09.1993 specifies six categories for identifying Creamy Layer (a) Constitutional/Statutory post (b) Group ‘A’ and Group ‘B’ Officers of Central and State Governments, employees of PSUs and Statutory bodies, universities, (c) Colonel and above in armed forces and equivalent in paramilitary forces (d) professionals like Doctors, Lawyers, Management Consultants, Engineers etc. (e) Property owners with agricultural holdings or vacant land and/or buildings and (f) income/wealth tax asessee.The OM further stipulates that the said parameters would apply mutatis mutandis to officers holding equivalent or comparable posts in PSUs, Banks, Insurance Organisations, Universities, etc. and Government was required to determine equivalence of positions in these organisations with those in Government. Pending the equivalence to the established in these institutions Income criteria would apply for the officers in these Institutions. However, this exercise of determining the equivalence of posts in Government and posts in PSUs, PSBs etc. had not been initiated. The determination of equivalence of posts has been thus pending for almost 24 years.The matter of formulating equivalence has since been examined in detail. In PSUs, all Executive level posts i.e. Board level executives and managerial level posts would be treated as equivalent to group ‘A’ posts in Government and will be considered Creamy Layer. Junior Management Grade Scale–1 and above of Public Sector Banks, Financial Institutions and Public Sector Insurance Corporations will be treated as equivalent to Group ‘A’ in the Government of India and considered as Creamy Layer. For Clerks and Peons in PSBs, FIs and PSICs, the Income Test as revised from time to time will be applicable. These are the broad guidelines and each individual Bank, PSU, Insurance Company would place the matter before their respective board to identify individual posts.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Centre has evolved criteria to identify posts in the PSUs, public sector banks and financial institutions comparable with those in the government to exclude the ‘creamy layer’ for the purpose of granting reservation benefits to the OBC employees.A proposal to this effect was examined and approved by a panel of ministers and sent to the Union Cabinet for its final nod, a senior government official said.The same panel had recently cleared the proposal to raise the ‘creamy layer’ ceiling for the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category to Rs 8 lakh per annum from the existing Rs 6 lakh for central government jobs.The need to draw up the criteria arose as there was lack of clarity in the comparable posts in the state-run undertakings and the government.The exercise to draw up the set of criteria was undertaken almost 23 years after a 1993 office order of the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) providing for 27 per cent quota for the OBCs in government vacancies and laying down categories under the creamy layer.This order merely stated that the criterion enumerated for Group A and Group B posts in government will apply to officers “holding equivalent and comparable posts” in the PSUs, banks and financial institutions.”A vigorous exercise was carried out following which the criteria have been drawn up for equivalence of posts in PSUs, government banks and insurance organisations among others with those in the government.”The proposal was for enhancement of the income ceiling for exclusion of creamy layer and has been approved by the panel of ministers and sent to the Union Cabinet,” the official said.He said the move was aimed at ensuring parity between the posts in the state-run financial institutions with those in the government for the purpose of granting quota benefits to those eligible.”There were discrepancies in granting benefits to the OBC employees of such organisations and some were getting undue benefits in the absence of a comparative chart of posts across government and PSUs,” he said.Under the 1993 memorandum issued by the DoPT, certain categories are listed under the creamy layer.While categories like constitutional posts, Group A/Class I and Group B/Class II were clearly mentioned in it, there was no clarity in regard to the employees of PSUs, banks and insurance organisations.The order further stated that pending the evaluation of posts on equivalence or comparable basis in these institutions, the criteria of income test would apply to the officers there.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath deemed the efforts of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led Central Government as a welcome move after it raised the creamy layer ceiling for the Other Backward Classes (OBCs) for central government jobs and also for setting up of a Commission to examine sub-categorisation of the OBCs. ?We are thankful to the Prime Minister and the Central Government for further categorising the OBC and other castes as some of them weren?t able to avail the policies of reservations earlier,? he said, while speaking to ANI. He also lauded the decision of the government to increase the ceiling of the creamy layer by Rs. 2 lakh. The Union Cabinet on Wednesday increased the creamy layer ceiling for the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category to Rs. 8 lakh per annum from the existing six lakh for central government jobs. The cabinet also announced setting up of a commission to examine sub-categorisation within the Other Backward Classes (OBCs) for a “more equitable distribution of reservation benefits”. The Commission will take up the exercise of identifying the respective castes, sub-castes, communities and synonyms in the central list of the OBCs and classifying them into their respective sub-categories. The Commission will submit its report within 12 weeks from the date of appointment of the chairperson. Briefing the media in New Delhi yesterday, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the decision is based on the recommendation of the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC). The ‘creamy layer’ is a ceiling which bars members of the Other Backward Classes from availing reservations in employment. Presently, if an OBC family’s income is up to Rs. 6 lakh then it is entitled for 27 per cent reservation in government jobs and seats in educational institutes. There had been three revisions of the creamy layer bar which was fixed at Rs. 1 lakh in 1993 and hiked to Rs. 2.5 lakh in 2004 and Rs. 4.5 lakh in 2008. The present ceiling of Rs. 6 lakh came into being in 2013.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the setting up of a panel to examine the sub-categorisation of Other Backward Classes (OBCs), in a move that might have huge political ramifications for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The Cabinet also announced raising of the ceiling for the creamy layer, from the annual income of Rs 6 lakh to Rs 8 lakh.The committee’s commendations, to be submitted within 12 weeks of appointment of a Chairperson, could lead to quota within the quota. Union Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment Thaawarchand Gehlot said that while there are over 10,000 OBC sub-castes in the central and the state lists, there has never been a census of the OBCs, unlike the SC/ST community.”There is a central list of OBCs, and a state list as well, but there has been no data on the community since 1931. The last UPA government had initiated a Socio-Economic and Caste Census, which was completed and submitted in 2015. The Ministry of Home Affairs is yet to disclose the findings,” Gehlot said.Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the committee will examine the “extent of inequitable distribution of benefits of reservation” among the OBC castes and communities. “The government has taken this step to ensure that benefits of reservation reach all backward classes, especially those who have been unable to reap the benefits till now,” he said.Earlier this year, the Modi government had tried to grant constitutional status to the National Backward Classes Commission through a Constitution Amendment Bill — the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) Bill. But as the BJP was short of numbers in the Rajya Sabha treasury benches, it was left red-faced when the Opposition forced the dropping of Clause 3 from the Bill.BJP President Amit Shah said this step taken by the government was a proof that the party was sensitive to the needs of the poor. “We are determined to achieve complete development of backward and other social communities. I am sure that the Modi government will soon get this law passed in the Parliament and get the panel constitutional status, so that the backwards castes in the back of the development queue can also progress,” he said.States including Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Puducherry, Karnataka, Haryana, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Bihar, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu have already sub-categorised OBCs. At present, OBCs enjoy over 27 per cent seats in government jobs and state-run educational institutions, after the implementation of Mandal Commission recommendations.In the recently-held UP elections, the BJP had attempted to mobilise a large section of the non-Yadav OBC voters, which helped it reap rich electoral dividends. The latest move by the Central government could be another step in that direction in the run-up to the 2019 general elections.Road ahead for the panelApart from studying the extent of the inequitable distribution of reservation among the large base of communities and castes that come under the broader term of OBCs, as per the Central list, the committee, cleared under Article 340 of the Constitution, will also study the parameters of sub-categorisation with a scientific approach. The committee will also identify communities, castes, and sub-castes as per the Central list to categorise into sub-castes.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Lauding the Centre?s move to raise the income limit defining “creamy layer” for the Other Backward Classes (OBC) reservation by Rs 2 lakh per annum, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Wednesday said that justice has been done after years. ?I congratulate Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Government as justice has been done to backward caste after years. Because of Rs six lakh limit, a big section amongst the backward class was deprived of getting the benefits in the educational institution and government jobs. This move will benefit them,? Chouhan told ANI. He noted that the extreme backward classes will be sub-classified naturally and that the Commission will submit its recommendations in 12 weeks. ?After independence, in Prime Minister Modi?s Government, unprecedented steps are taken to give justice to backward classes,? Chouhan asserted. The income limit defining “creamy layer” for the OBC reservation has been raised by Rs two lakh per annum even as the Union cabinet today approved setting up of a panel for sub-categorisation within the other backward classes for even distribution of reservation benefits. The government also ruled out having a relook at the present reservation system. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley told the reporters here that the Union Cabinet was today formally apprised of the decision to hike the limit for central government jobs. He said that Prime Minister Modi had recently hinted in Assam that the bar defining creamy layer would be raised and the procedure of formally informing the cabinet about the decision was completed today. The ministry of social justice and empowerment had proposed that the OBC families which earn more than Rs. eight lakh per year should be classified as ?creamy layer?, the ceiling which bars members of the other backward classes from availing reservations in employment. There had been three revisions of the creamy layer bar. It was fixed at Rs one lakh in 1993 and hiked to Rs 2.5 lakh in 2004 and Rs 4.5 lakh in 2008. The present ceiling of Rs six lakh came into being in 2013. Jaitley also announced the decision of the cabinet to set up a commission to work out sub-categorisation within other backward classes for a ?more equitable distribution of reservation benefits amongst the OBCs.” He said that 11 states of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Puducherry, Karnataka, Haryana, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Bihar, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Jammu region only of Jammu and Kashmir have already carried out sub-categorisation of OBCs.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Congress on Wednesday adopted a cautious approach on the increase in the ‘creamy layer’ income ceiling for OBCs and urged the government to seriously address the issue, saying it would adversely affect the poor and needy sections of society. Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said the government was creating “reservation within reservation” and raising the limit for creamy layer among OBCs will lead to the poor and needy not getting the benefits. He, however, said the opposition party was studying the implications of raising the ‘creamy layer’ limit for OBCs and would come out with a detailed response later. “It is the poor and the needy in society who need the job reservations. By raising the ‘creamy layer’ limit, is the BJP government not depriving the poor from getting job benefits? “When limits are raised to Rs 8 lakh, are you not giving the benefits to the rich and in the bargain the children of the poor will not get the benefit of jobs and reservation and will be left out,” he told reporters. Surjewala said the government and the prime minister and his Cabinet should seriously dwell on this aspect to ensure the poor are not left out of reservation benefits. The Union Cabinet on Wednesday increased the ‘creamy layer’ ceiling for the Other Backward Classes (OBC) category to Rs 8 lakh per annum from the existing Rs 6 lakh for central government jobs. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said those in the OBC category earning up to Rs 8 lakh per annum would now get reservation benefits.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Even before the government could heave a sigh of relief after settling Gurjar quota demand, Jats of Bharatpur and Dholpur have threatened to stage a violent agitation on August 23, 2017, demanding their inclusion in the OBC quota. Jats, barring natives these two districts, are enjoying the benefits of OBC reservation in the state. Incidentally, Rajasthan is the only state in the country which has included Jats in OBC category. However, Jats of Bharatpur and Dholpur were denied the quota benefits when the then prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee government notified Jats of Rajasthan in OBC category in 1999. The Jat community in these two districts belongs to ruling class of pre-independence era and hence not considered socially or economically backward.Chief minister Vasundhara Raje is the daughter-in-law of Dholpur princely state which is an erstwhile Jat kingdom. Raje has shown high-class political talent and diplomacy in resolving Gurjar agitation issue a couple of days ago and accommodated them in OBC category upping the ceiling of quota from 21% to 26%. The spearhead of Jat agitation Vishvendra Singh, a member of the erstwhile royal family of Bharatpur, has blown hot and cold on this issue. He is among the few politicians who have been able to represent both Congress and BJP in assembly. With friends in the ruling party, BJP stands a bright chance in negotiating with Vishvendra Singh.“After Gurjar, now the issue of Jat agitation is also to be dealt with deftly. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is visiting Udaipur on August 29. She will have to show her negotiation skills to save the government from embarrassment before the PM. She has done it in past also when she was able to contain Jat agitation in June this year. Being a bahu from the same community, Raje has an upper hand in dealing with such situation,” said a political observer.The settlement of Gurjar quota has added fuel to Jat reservation fire. Jats want a similarly written assurance from the government. But in the case of Jat reservation, the government can do very little.The matter of inclusion of Jats from Dholpur and Bharatpur has been taken up with High Court and Supreme Court. The central government had tried for the inclusion of Bharatpur and Dholpur Jats in OBC following demands from the community. But the apex court on March 17, 2015, quashed a Government of India’s notification dated March 4, 2014, and struck down the Jats of Bharatpur and Dholpur from the Centre’s OBC list. In such situation, what exactly and how much can be done by a “helpless” state Government, which is bound to go by the mandate of the Court.The Rajasthan high court also barred the Jat community in Dholpur and Bharatpur districts from being treated as Other Backward Classes (OBCs), saying that the community could continue to enjoy the benefits of the status across the rest of the state.To be dealt with deftlyJats of Bharatpur and Dholpur have threatened to stage a violent agitation on August 23, 2017, demanding their inclusion in the OBC quota.Rajasthan is the only state in the country which has included Jats in OBC category.Jats of Bharatpur and Dholpur were denied the quota benefits as they belonged to ruling class of pre-independence era.CM Raje is the daughter-in-law of Dholpur princely state. Spearheading the stir is Vishvendra Singh of erstwhile Bharatpur royal family.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Gurjars and the government have reached an agreement over the reservation issue. The government has increased the quota of OBC (other backward castes) from 21 percent to 26 percent. This quota is further bifurcated into two parts A and B; wherein the communities that are better off will get a quota of 21 percent and the communities, that are more backward will get 5 percent reservation. The Gurjars fall in the second category. This however once again takes the total reservation to 54 percent. “A bill will be brought in the upcoming monsoon session of the state assembly to accommodate the proposed changes in OBC reservation,” said cabinet minister Arun Chaturvedi, member of the ministers committee.The decision comes hours before the mahapadav was announced by the Gurjars at Gazipur in Dausa on Friday. And by reaching this agreement, the government has averted another Gurjar reservation stir in the state. The tri-minister committee appointed by chief minister Vasundhara Raje held extensive talks with Gurjar leaders on Thursday. After a marathon deliberation at the Indira Gandhi panchayati raj sansthan, the two parties roughly reached a consensus. They then met the chief minister Vasundhara Raje, and the agreements were finalised. While the Gurjars have for present called off the mahapadav, the issue is far from over. However, it is a respite for the government that the mahapadav would not become the platform for the call of another agitation. The state government has previously has brought two bills on different occasions to extend five percent reservation to Gurjars and four other semi nomadic tribes under SBC (special backward class). However on both instances the bills were struck down by the High Court as the total reservation in state; that included 21 percent for OBC, 12 percent for Schedule Tribes and 16 percent for Schedule Caste exceeded the limit of 50 percent. Under this new module too, the total proposed reservation in the state will reach 54 percent and could be challenged in court. The Gurjar leaders are, however, not concerned, “This time it’s not that we will be extended reservation externally, so even if the issue reaches court we being the most backward of these sections will be able to defend our share,” said Himmat Singh, Gurjar agitation committee member. “As of now we are content and have decided not to call a stir. We will however have a community gathering on Friday to discuss future outcomes,” he added. It is this assurance of not invoking another stir, that has extended some relief to the state government as previously caste base reservation stir have often taken an ugly turn. The categorization of OBC reservation at present has also been proposed only in two categories, one that will include all castes presently under OBC and they will have 21 percent reservation intact. The second will be the SBC category that will have 5 percent reservation
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Rajasthan government today held a meeting with members of the Gujjar community on the issue to reservation. Convener of the Rajasthan Gujjar Reservation Conflict Committee, Kirodi Singh Bainsla, said that we need reservation within OBC. He said that he is hopeful about the meeting with the state government’s representatives. The Gujjar community wants reservation and the government should provide reservation under 50 per cent limit, he said. The State’s representatives, including Parliament Affair Minister Rajendra Rathore, said that government is committed to provide reservation in a legal manner.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>BJP national president Amit Shah told Gujarat BJP workers and leaders to compensate the loss in Rajya Sabha elections in the upcoming Assembly polls. Shah and Smriti Irani were being felicitated for winning the RS polls on Tuesday.He motivated party leaders and workers and said that all BJP workers should resolve that the party wins with enough majority in the Assembly polls and work towards it so that it would have enough votes to win all seats in the next Rajya Sabha polls too.Shah said, “We have set a target of 150+ seats for the next Assembly elections in Gujarat and this is my expectation from all BJP workers that they put in their best to achieve this. We should have that much majority in the Assembly so that all our candidates win with enough majority in the next Rajya Sabha polls.”Shah also said that the Narendra Modi-led central government had wished to constitute a commission for the welfare of OBC communities, but the Congress, which constitutes a majority in the Rajya Sabha, rejected this bill. He said that the main reason for Congress’ collapse on every front was because of their anti-people policies.CM Vijay Rupani, Gujarat BJP president Jitu Vaghani and other leaders were present at this ceremony. All leaders and workers gave compliments to Shah for bearing a new responsibility as a Rajya Sabha member and also congratulated him for completing three years as BJP national president on Wednesday.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Jawaharlal Nehru University Teachers’ Association (JNUTA) on Friday alleged that the administration was admitting fewer students in research courses than what was announced in the prospectus released in March.”The shortfall in offers is not because of paucity of applications as there were enough applications available in each centre and school. Yet, shockingly, only 53 per cent of the seats specified have been offered,” JNUTA President Ayesha Kidwai said in a statement.”Each and every programme, barring two (which had one seat each), has registered a shortfall,” she added.The teachers’ body also claimed that there has been a complete failure to satisfy the Constitutional provisions for reservation in the research admissions this year. “Only 2 SC, 2 ST, and 13 OBC candidates have been offered admission. It is highly unlikely that either the number or the overall percentage for reservation will improve significantly once the complete data is available, as the number of seats left to be accounted for are less than a 100,” Kidwai said.JNU witnessed a massive seat cut in M.Phil and PhD courses this year, following the implementation of the UGC May-2016 notification. The notification puts a cap on the number of students a professor can supervise and gives viva a 100 per cent weightage in the admission process.”The decision to give viva 100 per cent weightage is simply unfair, as the subjectivity inherent in the assessment of a candidate’s research potential solely on the basis of oral performance, especially when the cohort is very small, is enhanced,” the JNUTA said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah, who has been on a three-day visit to Lucknow as part of his nation-wide tour, on Monday highlighted the major achievements of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led government in the last three years. Addressing the media here, Shah attacked the previous government for being ineffective while listing the achievements of present one. Maintaining that the current government has been so well managed and effective that the opposition has not been able to levy a single corruption charge against them, Shah said, ?The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has completed over three years in office at the Centre, and has completed three months in office in Uttar Pradesh, and in these three years, the country has seen a visible development. Under the previous government, every month, there were cases of corruption, but we have completed three years, and there is not even one case of corruption against us,? he added. He said that the world has accepted that the Indian economy is growing rapidly. He said the ?jobless growth? criticism was misplaced as the government has given employment to 7.28 crore people through the Mudra Bank scheme. Shah reminded the Other Backward Classes (OBC) that the ?Modi government did a great job by according Constitutional status to the OBC Commission.? Commenting on last year?s surgical strike across the border, Shah said Prime Minister Modi had sent out a message that India is capable of protecting itself and giving a befitting reply to anyone. Talking about the other achievements of the Modi Government, he said that it has ensured electricity coverage in 13,000 villages and by May 2018 it will reach 19000 villages. ?19000 villages in India didn?t have electricity, and till now, almost 13000 villages have been provided, Before May 2018, all 19000 villages will have electricity,? he added. The BJP chief said that the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has launched 104 satellites into orbit under the present government. ?ISRO used to work before also, but the launching 104 is something incredible,? he added. He also said that Prime Minister Modi?s government sanctioned One Rank One Pension within a year of its governance. The BJP chief also highlighted the Swachh Bharat Mission and said that ?due to the prime minister?s initiative, over four crore toilets have been constructed across the country?. On hearing the news of the Gujarat Congress MLAs being shifted to a Bengaluru resort, Shah said it seemed as if the Congress does not trust its MLAs. ?Why have they been made prisoners?? he asked. He also rejected suggestions that the BJP had engineered Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar?s resignation last week and also his decision to get back into the NDA fold. He said Kumar himself had ended the Janata Dal-United?s alliance with the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and resigned. He also said that he was confident about Modi and the BJP serving a second consecutive term at the Centre from 2019.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An aspirant seeking admission in Radio and Television journalism course at the Indian Institute of Mass Communication (IIMC) alleged discrimination during the interview took place at its Delhi branch on Thursday.Narrating his ‘disturbing’ experience, the Muslim-OBC candidate, who is a former Delhi University student, wrote a lengthy post on Facebook that went viral on Friday.According to the aspirant, who doesn’t want to be named, as soon as his interview began, the panelists had questioned him, “How can a Muslims be OBC?”. He alleged that he was asked if he had any documents to prove it.Shocked by the this, the 23-year-old initially tried to convince the panelists saying, “There are some castes in Muslims which fall under that category,” and later handed over them his OBC certificate.”Almost all central and state Universities have separate quota for Muslim OBC. I have got admission under this Category in DU,” he said.The institute, however, denied the allegations saying, “There is no space of any caste, class, or religion-based discrimination here.””We, at IIMC, treat everyone equally, irrespective of their caste, class, or religion. And if the aspirant has any such complaint against the panelists he should inform us. We will definitely look into the matter and take appropriate action,” Director General, IIMC, KG Suresh said while speaking to DNA.The candidate also alleged that the panelists also tried to intimidate him by randomly making a call in the middle of the interview. “One of the panelists apparently called the SDM of my locality in a bid to check the authenticity of my certificate,” he said.Other students who appeared in the interviews that took place at IIMC in the last two days, also complained of being asked ‘inappropriate’ questions by the panelists. “Most of the questions they asked were about my opinions on reservation,” said another OBC aspirant who appeared in an interview for the same course.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>General and OBC category government employees under an organisation spearheading a movement against SC/ST quota in job promotion will assemble in the national capital on July 1 to register their protest. The umbrella body of General and OBC government employees- Samta Andolan Samiti- has also filed a complaint at Parliament Street police station against former Union minister in UPA government and present Chief Minister of Puducherry V Narayanasamy for alleged “contempt” of Supreme Court order regarding reservation in promotion. The organisation has also named a dozen senior IAS officers in its complaint. “The police complaint has been filed against the former minister V Narayanasamy and the IAS officers for destroying career of lakhs of general and OBC category employees by not implementing Supreme Court’s order against reservation in promotion,” said PN Sharma, president of Samta Andolan Samiti. He alleged that the reservation in promotion was being given at the Centre and state level by “flouting” court directions. The affected general and OBC employees will gather at Civic Centre here to chalk out their future course of action over the issue on July 1, Sharma said in a press conference. On June 21, Union minister Ramdas Athawale had said that a bill for reserving promotions for SCs, STs and OBCs in government jobs will be tabled in the next session of Parliament in July.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Dialogue between Bharatpur Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti and the state government nominees held at Bharatpur divisional commissioner office on Friday evening has failed. Now, Jats have decided to continue blocking roads and railway tracks and to intensify protests.On Friday, in order to press for their demand of reservation under OBC category, agitating Jats blocked all rail and road routes to Bharatpur city. Traders too joined protest and markets remained closed. Meanwhile, additional police force was deployed in view of the Jat agitation.Social Justice and Empowerment department director Dr Samit Sharma, divisional commissioner Subir Kumar, district collector Dr NK Gupta and police superintendent Anil Tak from the government side while Deeg MLA Vishvendra Singh and Bharatpur Jat Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti convener Nem Singh Fauzdar represented the Jat community and held talks at Bharatpur divisional commissioner office.At the meeting, the talks could not continue further when officials turned down Vishvendra Singh’s demand for revealing contents of the OBC Commission recommendations. After the meeting, Singh announced that the agitation would carry on until OBC reservation is given to Jats. However, officials have hinted that second round of talks would be held soon. Meanwhile, the agitation turned more aggressive on the second day on Friday. Jat community blocked roads and rail routes at several places as part of their agitation. In Bharatpur, rail route was blocked at Paprera which was why Agra-Bandikui passenger train had to return from Nadbai on Friday. Rail track was also blocked at Helak station.Agitating Jats also blocked Nadbai-Nagar road route at Katara Raunija. Bharatpur-Kumher route, Bharatpur-Delhi, Bharatpur-Mathura, rail routes were also jammed.B’DAY CELEBRATEDMeanwhile, as per his announcement made on Thursday, Deeg MLA Vishvendra Singh celebrated his birthday on the road at Khedli turn. His supporters congratulated him while raising slogans in his praise. Cake cutting ceremony was not held as Singh had refused. On the other hand, Bharatpur district collector Gupta issued prohibitory order under Section 144 of the CrPC in the district to maintain peace and law and order as well as to deal with chakka jam by Jat agitators.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>OBC leader Alpesh Thakor today threatened to sit on an indefinite hunger strike if the Gujarat government did not announce a complete loan waiver for farmers in the state by the next month. The Thakor community leader claimed that out of a total of 63 lakh farmers in Gujarat, around 40 lakh were under debt. His demand comes close on the heels of protests in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh by farmers who were pressing for loan waiver, among other things. Farmers in Maharashtra called off their agitation on Sunday after the state government announced a loan waiver. “The situation of farmers in Gujarat is no different from any other part of the country. Out of the total 63 lakh farmers, 40 lakh are under debt. If the Maharashtra government can waive farmers’ loans, then why can’t the Gujarat government do it?” Thakor, the president of OBC-SC-ST Ekta Manch as well as of Kshatriya Thakor Sena, asked. “I demand that the state government should announce a complete farm loan waiver. We are giving them one week’s ultimatum. If our demand is not met by June 20, we will launch our stir the next day. I urge all the farmers not to pay the loan instalments till the government accepts our demand,” said Thakor. Starting June 21, farmers across the state will give memoranda to the local authorities at taluka and district levels for two weeks, Thakor, who has emerged as a prominent OBC leader in Gujarat, said. “If this does not work, I along with thousands of farmers would gather at Gandhinagar or Ahmedabad on July 8, 9 and 10. We will sit on an indefinite hunger strike to mount pressure on the government. I urge all the farmers unions to join hands for this mega agitation,” he added. Apart from the loan waiver, Thakor demanded free water for irrigation, free organic fertiliser and formation of a joint committee of farmers and government to decide minimum support price (MSP) for farm produce. The state Congress unit has also given a call to block roads on June 16 to highlight various issues concerning farmers. However, Thakor accused both the ruling BJP as well as the opposition Congress of playing politics in the name of farmers. “As the Assembly polls are approaching here, both the BJP and the Congress are doing their politics to woo farmers. But, both the parties will have to answer farmers as to what they have done for them so far,” Thakor said. Meanwhile, Chief Minister Vijay Rupani did not give a clear answer when he was asked if the state government was mulling to waive farm loans on the lines of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra. “Our government is pro-farmer. We have taken many important steps for the welfare of farmers. We are doing so many things for them and will do whatever is necessary in the future,” Rupani told mediapersons here today.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Calcutta University will fill up a large number of vacant teachers’ posts in the next three months, a senior CU official said today. “The Syndicate decided to fill up the vacant posts at yesterday’s meeting. We are hopeful about completing the recruitments in three months time,” Registrar Rajagopal Dhar Chakraborty said. “The process is beginning very very soon,” the Registrar said. Advertisements for applications from candidates will be published in newspapers and posted on the university website. A university official said over 300 posts had been lying vacant for a long time, many reserved for SC/ST/OBC candidates. The emergency syndicate meeting had taken place to discuss how to fill up the posts.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Rajasthan-based Karni Sena today urged all Rajput bodies seeking reservation for the community to rally under one banner to put pressure on the Centre for making economic status as the key criterion for granting quota benefits. Shri Rajput Karni Sena president Mahipal Sinh Makrana said at the end of this year, nearly 15 lakh Rajputs would gather in Delhi to raise their demand for reservation. The outfit has been spearheading agitations demanding quota for the economically weaker sections among the Rajputs and other forward communities for the last few years. Makrana, who was here as part of the Karni Sena’s efforts to expand its base in poll-bound Gujarat, said the present reservation system had failed to serve its purpose. “There are many Rajput bodies in different states which are running campaigns against the existing reservation system. We want to bring all such bodies under the banner of Karni Sena so that we can put pressure on the Centre over the issue in an united manner,” he told reporters. Makrana said the Karni Sena wants the economic condition of a community to be the key criterion for granting benefits of reservation. “We strongly believe that poor people from unreserved category should get benefits of reservation. Economic condition should be made the key parameter for quota. To mount pressure on the Centre and get a law regarding this passed, we have planned a mega gathering of 15 lakh Rajputs in Delhi at the end of this year,” he said. Makrana, however, said the Karni Sena did not want reservation for Rajputs at the expense of the communities which have been availing benefits under the OBC quota. “We want economic condition-based reservation for the Rajputs and other castes. For that, the government needs to pass a law in order to increase the (existing percentage of) quota and take it beyond the 50 per cent cap. To compel the government in doing so, we will show our strength in Delhi,” he said. Makrana claimed Karni Sena has over 6.5 lakh registered members in Rajasthan alone, where it has sought 14 per cent reservation for Rajputs, based on their economic status. “In Gujarat, we have already appointed conveners in Rajkot and Sanand. Now, we will increase our base here gradually. We have undertaken similar exercise in Hindi- speaking states, such as Madhya Pradesh and Haryana. Our aim is to bring every Rajput under one banner,” he added. The Patidar community in Gujarat has been holding agitations since 2015, under the leadership of Hardik Patel, demanding quota in government jobs and educational institutes under OBC category.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The BJP MP from Kurukshetra, Raj Kumar Saini, today said Rajya Sabha has done nothing except stalling legislative works and “causing severe damage” to the country, and demanded it be abolished immediately. Saini, often in the news for his anti-Jat rants, also said the Upper House “serves no purpose” as its members are not directly elected and hence are not accountable to the people. Unlike Rajya Sabha, Lok Sabha members are elected directly, he said, adding the former has become a “political arena” and its members “do whatever they deem fit to”. “I have observed the proceedings of the (Upper) House and realised it has not done anything apart from stalling the work and causing severe damage to the country,” Saini claimed. He said Rajya Sabha often has members from the party defeated in various elections, or are from political families, or “get an entry due to money power” and they do not allow passage of important bills. This affects the functioning of the party in power which has a majority in Lok Sabha, he said. “I want to make a request with folded hands to (Prime Minister Narendra) Modiji that Rajya Sabha should be abolished with immediate effect,” he said. He claimed that by stalling legislative works in Rajya Sabha, Opposition wants to send out a message the government has failed, and thus they aim to score political points. “They use Rajya Sabha as an instrument to further their political interests…their duty is to create obstacles for the government,” he said and dubbed the Upper House as “unreal house”. The parliamentarian has been vocal against demand of the reservation by the Jats under the OBC category and today also he spoke on the issue. Referring to the demand, he said it’s a “mockery” of the system that those who are “highly prosperous and have all the resources” were seeking reservation. “If people were to get into the OBC category at gunpoint, it would be like murder of the democracy,” he said, addressing a gathering here as part of “Parshuram Jayanti Samaroh”. Seeking the support of the OBC community, he said, “We have come here for 2019. I have put a few things before you. I do not know if you are here for Raj Kumar Saini, or BJP or may be you think that I am a BJP MP or your friend, this only you can tell.” “I am not a BJP slave or such a worker that I will play their tune,” he said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Centre will open 94 new Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalyas (KGBV) across the country for girl students belonging to minority and disadvantaged sections. According to a senior HRD Ministry official, the new sanctioned schools are likely to start functioning by next year. KGBVs are upper primary residential schools for girls from SC, ST, OBC categories besides other minority and disadvantaged sections of society. While 75 per cent seats are reserved for girls from the mentioned category, 25 per cent seats are for girls from families below the poverty line. There are currently 3,703 KGBVs functional across India. The Kasturba Gandhi Balika Vidyalaya scheme was introduced in 2004 under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan program to provide educational facilities for girls belonging to marginalised communities having access to limited facilities.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Asserting that defeating the BJP in Gujarat is his prime aim, quota agitation leader Hardik Patel today hinted that he may consider supporting the Congress in the Assembly polls to reach the goal.The 23-year-old quota agitation spearhead accused the state government of dilly-dallying on the issue of granting reservation to the Patel community under OBC quota. Hardik, who leads the Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti (PAAS), said he would work to defeat the BJP in the state Assembly polls due later this year, if the state government does not come up with a firm assurance over the quota issue at the earliest.”Despite making numerous representations regarding our demands, including for reservation, during the last two years, the BJP government has not given any assurance,” Hardik told mediapersons here today. “We want the government to make its stand clear on reservation at the earliest,” he said.”I want to tell them that our agitation is still very much alive and it will gain momentum in the days to come. We are now planning to make sure that the party, which is dreaming of winning 150 seats, does not go beyond 80 seats in the polls,” Hardik said. Of the total 182 seats in state assembly, the BJP presently has a majority with 121 seats while the main Opposition party, the Congress, has 57 seats.”These polls will not be a battle between just the BJP and the Congress. It will be an election wherein farmers, youths, women, Patels and Dalits will fight the BJP. “We have also kept our options open to supporting the Congress if they promise to fulfil our demands after winning the polls,” he said.The demands include reservation to the Patels under the OBC quota, formation of Patidar Commission, compensation to the families of at least 10 Patel youths who died during the quota violence in 2015 and withdrawal of FIRs against the agitators. Divulging his plans to defeat the BJP, Hardik said a mega gathering of PAAS workers has been planned on June 11 in the city.”Around 50,000 PAAS workers from over 7,000 villages will converge here on June 11. During that gathering, they will be briefed about carrying out a campaign across Gujarat against the BJP for the next six months,” he said. To raise the issue of “injustice to the community” by the ruling BJP, Hardik also announced holding a rally, ‘Nyay Yatra’, from Botad to neighbouring Bhavnagar town on May 20 and May 21. “This yatra, which would commence from Botad on May 20, would pass through nearly 50 villages and converge at Bhavnagar on May 21. Our aim is to raise the issue of injustice to our community, farmers and women,” Hardik said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s words that his government’s OBC outreach would benefit backwards among Muslims will echo on the ground when his government holds conferences across the country to create awareness about it among minorities.The minority affairs ministry, which is spearheading the exercise, is planning around 100 such conferences, including a mega one in Delhi after the MCD polls.”A large number of backwards among Muslims are not even aware of the benefits they are entitled to… We want to inform and empower them about their rights,” Minority Affairs Minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi told a group of reporters.According to him, nearly 50 per cent of Muslims, comprising around three dozen communities, fall in the OBC category. Muslims constitute 14.2 per cent of the population in India.The Modi government has brought in a legislation seeking to grant constitutional status to the National Commission of Backward Classes. However, the Opposition insisted that it be referred to a Select Committee in Rajya Sabha, where it outnumbers the ruling NDA. The ruling BJP is now cashing in on the Opposition strategy to accuse it of stalling a move that would benefit the backward classes.It was at the BJP national executive meet in Bhubaneswar last weekend that Modi made it clear that he wanted to empower the backwards among Muslims so that leadership in the community is not confined to forward communities like Syeds and Pathans, sources said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> All Anna India Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) leader Sasikala Pushpa has shown solidarity with Prime Minister Narendra Modi over the bill that aims at giving constitutional status to National Commission For Backward Classes (NCBC) and seeks to benefit all OBC communities, including among Muslims. “I am very much proud to be part of your esteemed leadership-era as a part of ‘temple of democracy.’ It has been a long-standing demand of the OBC community, since Independence to make it a statutory commission. It has indeed happened under your leadership by giving constitutional/statutory acceptance for the function of the NCBC,” a letter from Pushpa’s office to Prime Minister Modi said. “In order to safeguard, the interest of the socially and educationally backward classes more effectively. Your special initiatve certainly is essential for the present and the future generations. It is an aggressive step to outreach the backward caste in India, as the way we have done for SCs and STs.” “We as the Member of Parliament must take this to the people of India, so that 1.34 billion will appreciate your spearhead stand for the generations to come. I deeply appreciate and wish to join your selfless service to the nation,” the letter added. Prime Minister Modi’s intervention on the subject came during a debate at the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) National Executive meet on a resolution moved on the NCBC Bill. The legislation has been referred to a select committee of the Rajya Sabha after its passage by the Lok Sabha. The government lacks numbers in the Rajya Sabha to get the Constitution Amendment Bill passed, which requires a special two-thirds majority and a subsequent ratification by at least half of the state assemblies.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Prime Minister Narendra Modi today slammed opposition parties for stalling a bill that seeks to accord constitutional status to the OBC commission, questioning why they stopped its passage in the Rajya Sabha when it aims to benefit backward castes. Modi was addressing the OBC MPs of BJP, who had gathered to thank the Prime Minister for the passage of the bill in Lok Sabha which seeks to create National Commission for Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (NCSEBC), with judicial powers and constitutional status. “The Prime Minister said this bill will ensure justice to backward sections of the society and will also help in their social empowerment, but it is surprising why this bill was not passed in the Upper House,” BJP general secretary Bhupender Yadav said, quoting Modi, after the meeting. The Prime Minister said it would have been better if this bill was passed in the Upper House, he added. Modi also asked the MPs to spread the message about the bill and make backward classes aware about it and how it would be a game changer in their lives. The Rajya Sabha had yesterday referred the Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty-third Amendment) Bill, 2017, which has already been passed by the Lok Sabha, to the Select Committee after opposition forced the government. The committee to examine the bill will be headed by BJP member Bhupender Yadav. It has been asked to submit its report by the last day of the first week of the next session. The 25-member Rajya Sabha Select Committee includes Sharad Yadav, Ram Gopal Yadav, Satish Mishra and Praful Patel. According to the bill, the new body NCSEBC will replace the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC). Once the Bill is passed, states will not be able to add or delete castes from the backward classes’ list without Parliament’s approval.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A bill to accord constitutional status to the National Commission for Backward Classes was approved by the Lok Sabha even as the Opposition expressed apprehensions that it would impair the power of states. The Constitution Amendment bill, which requires two-thirds majority for passage, was approved by the House with 360 members voting in favour and two against.Terming it as “historic” bill, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot said it would promote the welfare of the OBCs. The minister assured the House that the bill, which has similar provisions as in case of SC and ST commissions, will not curtail the powers of states in any way.The Opposition, including the Congress, the Trinamool Congress and the BJD, sought an assurance from the minister that powers of the states would not be affected by the passage of the bill.Responding to demands for including a woman in the five-member commission, the minister said he would incorporate this suggestion while framing the rules for operationalising the legislation.As per the statement of objects and reasons of the bill, the Commission will hear the grievances of socially and educationally backward classes, a function which has been discharged so far by the National Commission for Scheduled Castes. It also seeks to insert a new article 342A so as to provide that the President may, by public notification, specify the socially and educationally backward classes.Trinamool member Kalyan Banerjee and BJD MP Bhartruhari Mahtab said this Constitution amendment bill would take away the powers of states to include or exclude a community under the OBC classes.On this concern, Gehlot said: “we will not take way the powers and rights of states. I assure you that. The power of state commissions would continue. We do not want to weaken the states now or in future also”.He also said that the Centre would act on the recommendations of the Governor which will be submitted after consulting the respective state government. “We are trying to strengthen the commission and not weaken that,” he said.The House also repealed the National Commission for Backward Classes Act 1993 as the Commission will now be part of the Constitution. “We respect the rights of the states. We will not distract from the federal structure,” he said.After this law is enacted, Parliament will have powers to include or exclude any community from the list of OBCs so in that sense “we are weakening the centre”, he said.On the issue raised by Asaduddin Owaisi (AIMIM) about Muslims, the minister said that the government will not interfere in the list of the states where some Muslim communities are included in the list of OBCs. Trinamool Congress member Kalyan Banerjee said so far the power of enacting law in identifying the backward classes has been entrusted with the state government but this power will be compromised with the insertion of new Article 342A in the Constitution. “Nobody has a right to hit the basic structure of Constitution of India,” he said, adding his party is against the Bill.Bhartruhari Mahtab (BJD) said his party is in favour of reservation for Other Backward Caste (OBC) but against the “compromise” of the federal structure which is proposed by the Bill. “I stand in this House to oppose this Bill…It is not in the interest of federal structure,” Mehtab said. He urged the government to reconsider the Bill and replace the word ‘recommendation’ with ‘recommendation’. He said as per the Supreme Court constitutional bench judgement of 1992, a community, on the basis of economic backwardness, is not entitled to reservation but government can provide them support through financial means.Backward classes are identified only on basis of social inferiority, he said, adding, it is different from untouchability, remoteness and economic backwardness. Based on remoteness, the Constitution provides reservation to Scheduled Tribe and Scheduled Caste gets reservation on basis of untouchability. However, government can provide financial support in terms of scholarship and other means to those who are economically backward.”So Clause 4 of the Bill is misleading and will create confusion in the future,” he said. Expressing anxiety, Mehtab said, recommendations are at times accepted or rejected and there are instances where some caste are included in the central list without state government recommendation.Pradhan is a community which is in the OBC list of state but not in the central list, he cited an example. “When you are doing a good job, do it perfectly…why do you try to fiddle with this?…Is it because of agitation in Haryana, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, and Maharashtra,” he asked.Hukumdev Narayan Yadav (BJP) sought considering of abolishing the caste system to give a level playing field to all sections of people. He said as long as there is caste system, there will be discrimination and the country will suffer. He accused Congress of doing nothing for the backward classes.KN Ramachandran (AIADMK) termed this as a remarkable bill and said it should be ensured that the states’ right are not affected. K Rammohan Naidu (TDP), while supporting the Bill, sought clarification from the minister about the issue of consultation with the Governor on the issue of specifying the socially and educationally backward classes. He also said that the creamy layer with regard to OBC reservation should be done away with it.BN Goud (TRS) said that the government should also consider setting up of OBC ministry and Jotiba Phule anniversary should be declared a holiday as the social reformer represented the community. Upendra Kushwaha, leader of BJP ally Rashtriya Lok Samta Party (RLSP) and Minister of State for HRD, said the cap of 27% reservation for OBCs should be raised. Minister of State for Health Anupriya Patel said it was a long-pending demand to give this commission a constitutional status. The others who participated in the debate include Ganesh Singh (BJP), Dharmendra Yadav (SP), J P Narayan Yadav (RJD), Pritam Munde (BJP).
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Opposition protests over the delay in filling up of vacancies in the commissions for SCs, STs, backward classes and the minorities rocked Parliament for the third consecutive day today. Replying to the opposition criticism in the Lok Sabha, Social Justice Minister Thaawar Chand Gehlot said there were precedences of long delay in filling up of such vacancies and the government was bringing a bill to accord constitutional status to the OBC Commission. He said the process to appoint new members was affected due to model code of conduct for the assembly polls and the government has now initiated steps to fill the vacancies as soon as possible. Gehlot also cited specific examples of delay of 3-10 months in filling up vacancies in ST and other commissions under the previous governments. The issue was raised in the Lok Sabha by Congress MP K Suresh who said he wanted to bring an adjournment motion on the issue. A number of other opposition lawmakers vociferously criticised the government for the delay, accusing it of ignoring the welfare of the downtrodden. Rejecting the charges, Gehlot said government will soon bring a bill to give constitutional status to the OBC Commission. For the third day in a row, the issue figured in the Rajya Sabha with opposition SP and BSP members taking on the government on the issue. Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said the notices under rule 267 seeking suspension of business to discuss the issue moived by opposition members have been rejected and they can give notice for a short-duration discussion, which will be considered. The Rajya Sabha may tomorrow discuss the issue tomorrow, as Ramgopal Yadav (SP) said such a notice will be given provided the Chair agreed for a discussion tomorrow. Kurien at first said a proper notice should be given which will be considered by the Chair, but when Yadav persisted that the Chair should give an assurance that the notice will be accepted and discussion held tomorrow, the Deputy Chairman said, “OK.” Opposition members, who had risen to protest on the matter, resumed their places after this and the listed business was taken up. Earlier, Kurien said 267 notices on the issue are rejected. “You can give another notice for short duration discussion. That can be examined. That can be considered. No problem. But not 267.” When the House met, SP, BSP and Congress members were up on their feet raising the issue of vacant posts in the commissions. Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the government was ready to reply to any discussion on the issue, adding that the vacancies could not be filled up because of the model code of conduct for assembly elections coming into force. Mayawati (BSP) said the government must answer why constitutional commissions were being made “ineffective”. Digvijaya Singh (Cong) sought to know the fate of his substantive motion seeking discussion on the conduct of Goa Governor in not inviting the single largest party, Congress, to form government in the state after assembly elections. “Your notice is there. Chairman has admitted it. It is for the government, Leader of the House to give time for discussion. We are waiting for that time and date,” Kurien said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>and so there was no reason for the protests. “Your concern is very genuinue. I agree. (But) Minister has very categorically replied,” he said. As the protests continued, he said, “the minister said in Hindi. May be you don’t understand (that). You haven’t understood what Minister said.” Gehlot repeated again that the Prime Minister has said several times that the government has been a supporter of reservation for SCs, STs and OBCs and will continue to remain. “A decision to provide constitutional status to the OBC commission has been taken,” he said. But as the protests continued, Kurien was forced to adjourn the House for 10 minutes.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In the backdrop of BJP MP Yogi Adityanath taking oath as Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister, BSP supremo Mayawati today alleged that the saffron party wanted to contest the 2019 Lok Sabha polls not on its development plank, but by “polarising voters”. “BJP wants to contest the 2019 polls not on the issue of development, but by polarising the voters. That is why they have made an RSS man the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh,” she told reporters here. “I got the invitation but boycotted the oath-taking ceremony as the BJP has betrayed the backward castes and Brahmins by making him (Adityanath) the chief minister following the RSS agenda. “As the BJP has not honoured any of its promises made in the run-up to the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, it will be banking on its polarisation agenda in 2019,” she claimed. Regarding Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Keshav Prasad Maurya, an OBC, not becoming the chief minister, Mayawati said, “His (Maurya’s) name was put forward to garner OBC support. Had he not been made deputy chief minister, he would have got a heart attack. He has been betrayed and so have been the Brahmins, whose votes were taken by the BJP. “I have been a chief minister. I know that deputy chief ministers have no role to play. It would have been better if they (Maurya and Dinesh Sharma) were made cabinet ministers with some departments.” The BSP chief also alleged that when Kalyan Singh of the BJP, also an OBC, was the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh, the saffron party had “conspired”, so that he could not continue at the top post for long. Describing the BJP as an “anti-OBC” party, she alleged that it had “let the VP Singh government at the Centre fall” on the issue of reservation. “This state government has not been formed by honest practices. Besides tampering with the EVMs, it (BJP) has betrayed the OBCs and Brahmins,” Mayawati said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It was in the summer of 2015 that BJP chief Amit Shah, along with his backroom team, got down to the brass tacks of booth management and deft social engineering in Uttar Pradesh.A BJP leader from the state recalls that the party gave the slogan of ‘265-plus’ in its battle for the 403-member Assembly. The party did not foresee winning more than around 250, the leader said.The results came as a surprise to several people within the BJP.As the party swept the state, it also won around 88 per cent of the reserved Scheduled Caste (SC) seats. While the BJP bagged 69 of them, its allies — Apna Dal and SBSP — won three each of the 85 reserved seats. The BSP won just one seat, SP three and Congress none. In 2012, the BJP had won just three of these seats, while the SP got 58, BSP 15 and Congress four.“This means Dalits voted for us this time and the Jatavs have also not aggressively voted to defeat us,” said the BJP’s state vice-president, JPS Rathore.BSP chief Mayawati’s decision to give tickets to 100 Muslim candidates also helped the BJP, as this cut only into the votes of the SP-Congress alliance.The BJP had sown the seeds of non-Jatav appeasement much earlier, when booth committees were set up. Of the 1.47 lakh polling stations, 1.28 lakh booth committees were set up. Each of the 21-member committees had 20 per cent Dalits and 40 per cent OBCs. Shah directly kept in regular touch with the booth committee chiefs, energising and motivating them, party sources said.Sunil Bansal, the young state general secretary who worked with Shah when he was the UP in-charge in 2014, was given the task of organising these booth level committees and interactions with the Dalit and OBC groups. “He used to make decisions and we executed them,” said Rathore. OBC sammelans were held across the state last year in all its six kshetras.Bansal worked behind the scenes as the BJP worked resolutely to alter its social temperament to reach out to the non-Yadav OBCs and non-Jatav Dalits.This strategy ran through the campaign unwaveringly till the end. Shah chose Keshav Prasad Maurya, an OBC, as state president. Though he belonged to the backward Maurya community, he was not seen as someone who would turn away the upper castes, the BJP’s traditional vote base.The party then came out with its vision document, called ‘Gareeb Kalyan Sankalp Patra’, underlining its objective of reaching out to the underprivileged, poor, OBCs and Dalits. Around 35 per cent of its candidates were OBCs, while of the reserved SC seats, the party gave tickets to over 20 Passis and around a dozen Jatavs, besides others.While the BJP stuck to its goal without wavering, the confusion in the opposition camps of the SP and Congress further helped the party. Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav was dealing with a family feud, while the Congress dithered on its chief ministerial candidate and finally allied with the SP.Shah had impressed upon his team that it should work towards winning the party’s weak seats with as much zeal as for the winnable ones.REAPING BENEFITSThe BJP had sown the seeds of non-Jatav appeasement when booth committees were set up. Each of the 21-member committees had 20 per cent Dalits and 40 per cent OBCs. Amit Shah directly kept in regular touch with the booth committee chiefs, energising and motivating them, party sources said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Railways has introduced 33 per cent of sub-quota for women in the allotment of food stalls at rail premises as a special provision in the new catering policy. The new catering policy was launched recently by Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu as promised in the Rail Budget 2016-17. The allotment of quota for women in catering units aims to empower women economically, according to a senior IRCTC official. IRCTC, railways’ catering PSU, is responsible to implement the new policy. As per the new policy, a sub-quota of 33 per cent out of the reserved catering stalls would be alloted to women, he said. Currently 25 per cent of the minor catering units are reserved for various categories like SC (6 per cent), ST (4 per cent), BPL (3 per cent), OBC (3 per cent), Minorities (3 per cent), freedom fighters (4 per cent) and physically challenged persons (2 per cent) in major stations. While in other category stations, 49.5 per cent catering units are reserved for various categories like SC (12 per cent), ST (8 per cent), OBC (20 per cent) and minorities (9.5 per cent). The policy allows 33 per cent sub-quota for women in allotment of each category of minor catering units at all category of stations. Under the provision, Railways shall ensure that women participation does not fall below a specific level. The sub-quota reservation for women in each category shall ensure allotment of minimum 8 per cent stalls to women at major stations and minimum 17 per cent at other category stations, the IRCTC official said. There are approximately 8000 minor catering units in Indian Railways.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>aggressively woo a section of Dalits and OBCs, Mayawati told her supporters to not get hoodwinked by such “antics”. “They are working hard to disown their anti-Dalit and anti-OBC past. Their decision to appoint an OBC (Keshav Prasad Maurya) as the state president in place of a Brahmin (Laxmi Kant Vajpayee) was just a clever ploy you should beware of,” the BSP supremo remarked. “If, by an accident, the BJP happens to come to power in UP then backed by the government at the Centre, the party will work towards fulfilling the RSS agenda of doing away with reservations,” she said. “Reservations for Dalits was a direct result of the endeavours of of Baba Saheb Ambedkar. When V P Singh became the Prime Minister, he posthumously conferred Bharat Ratna on Ambedkar and implemented Mandal Commission whereby the reservation facility was extended to Backward Classes. “Our Dalit and OBC friends must not forget that it was the BJP which pulled down Singh’s government and it was BJP supporters who held violent agitations demanding withdrawal of Mandal,” the BSP supremo said. Mayawati also questioned the Prime Minister’s OBC status and alleged that he belongs to an upper caste, “he belongs to an upper caste called Ghanchi, which we call Teli (oilpresser) in our part of the country. When Modi was the Chief Minister of Gujarat, he had deliberately got his caste group included in OBC list to place a hurdle in the way of backward classes realising their full potential,” she claimed.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>will quit the public life if those charges are proved. Otherwise Chavda must tender apology,” said Vaghani. Following this, Congress and BJP MLAs engaged in a verbal spat, forcing the Speaker to adjourn the house for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, Hardik Patel asked the government to make its intentions clear. “Vaghani said how a community can be given the reservations….Gujarat Government has granted reservations under OBC quota to many communities. So why they are denying it to Patels?” he said in a statement. “Government should give a proposal to the OBC commission for a survey of the Patel community. Government just needs to make that proposal. Everything else will be taken care of by the commission,” he added.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The inquiry report that recently declared Hyderabad scholar Rohith Vemula an OBC, thereby going against the earlier probe which said that he was a Dalit, took the testimonials of only two people says an HT story.The findings of the new report are being questioned by Rohith’s family and lawyers who believe that a fresh inquiry was conducted so Union minister Bandaru Dattatreya and university vice-chancellor (V-C) P Appa Rao who were accused of caste discrimination and abetment of suicide could escape stern action. “Once Rohith is certified a non-Dalit, those in the dock for allegedly abetting his suicide will not be tried under the more stringent SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. It is a simple game to protect the accused,” the lawyer fighting the case, Jai Bhimrao said. The new probe was conducted by the joint collector of Guntur district and it took into consideration of the testimonial of only two people who claimed Rohith was an OBC over the testimonies of five others who said he was a Dalit from the Mala caste. Rohith’s adoptive grandmother who belonged to the OBC caste, his grandfather, and his two siblings had said he was a Dalit. But the inquiry team weighed in Rohith’s estranged father’s and paternal grandmother’s statements that he was an OBC. The report did not reject that his mother was a Dalit.The earlier probe was conducted by Kantilal Dande, the deputy collector of Guntur, in the first week of June 2016. But the state government put the findings aside and ordered a new probe. Rohith’s family also alleged the state government asked for the new report as it was under pressure from BJP-led Centre. “This report has been prepared under pressure from the Chandrababu Naidu-led Andhra Pradesh government, which is a close ally of the BJP and PM Narendra Modi,” Raja Vemula, Rohith’s brother said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A report by the Guntur collector concluded that Rohith Vemula was not a Dalit, and his certificate was reportedly obtained by fraudulent means. The certificate will be cancelled. A notice has been served to Vemula’s family and response has been sought asking why his certificate shouldn’t be cancelled. The District Level Scrutiny Committee in Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh submitted his final report stating that neither Rohith nor his mother Radhika were Dalits.They reportedly belongs to Vaddera community which falls under the OBC category.Earlier, on Rohith’s death anniversary, Radhika had alleged that government were desperate to declare him an OBC. She had said: “Governments are desperate to declare Rohit as Other Backward Class (OBC). After my son’s demise… they are now behind me. They want to declare my son as OBC. I know what humiliation I have undergone being Dalit in the society.”Radhika was addressing a group of students as part of the ‘Shahadat Din’ organised at the main entrance gate of University of Hyderabad (UoH) here. Rohith was found hanging in a hostel room on UoH campus.Radhika questioned why there was a delay in arresting the accused, including UoH Vice Chancellor Appa Rao Podile, Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya and others, who have been booked under SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and for abetment of Rohith’s suicide.A section of students under the aegis of Joint Action Committee for Social Justice – UOH had said that they would gather at the ‘Rohit Stupa’ on the varsity campus to remember his legacy and to vow that the fight will go on against “casteism and communalism”. However, nobody was allowed inside the campus.Addressing the group, Rohith’s brother Raja Vemula alleged, “During inquiry at the Guntur Collector office (with regard to the caste status of Rohith) they insulted my mother by questioning her character. She was also questioned how she raised her kids.””Whoever is raising his voice in the country is being labelled as ‘anti-national’,” he alleged, adding, “Unless we get justice, we will continue to fight till our death.” Radhika later requested the UoH security personnel to allow her to at least visit the ‘Rohith Stupa’ on the campus, but was denied permission. She, along with Raja and others, was also taken away by police.Raising questions on Rohith Vemula’s Dalit status, a commission constituted by the HRD ministry after the scholar’s death, had said that the material on record did not establish the caste of the deceased and attributed his suicide to personal reasons.However, National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) Chairman P L Punia had rejected the judicial commission’s report on Vemula’s suicide as “fake and fictitious”, and said the deceased research scholar was a Dalit.With inputs from agencies
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>BJP will field more than 10 per cent OBC candidates in the upcoming MCD elections in view of the increase in number of seats in outer and semi urban parts of Delhi. After considering the effect of delimitation, the party has taken the decision to field more than 10 per cent candidates from other backward class candidates in the outer and rural pockets of Delhi where the number of seats have increased, said a senior office bearer of the party. He noted that a sizeable number of Purvanchal people live there the party’s new city president Manoj Tiwari has been focusing on these areas. An internal survey of the party has revealed improved condition of BJP in 13 Assembly segments where nearly 50-60 wards are at stake in outlying areas of Delhi. “We are going with renewed vigor in these areas and expecting major success by fielding as many as possible OBC candidates,” said the party leader. These bigger constituencies like Matiala, Burari and Kirari have responded “very positively” to the party after appointment of Manoj Tiwari as president of Delhi BJP, he claimed. The elections for 272 wards of three municipal corporations are due in April. Forty six wards are reserved for SC and SC(Women) candidates while half of the remaining 222 wards are reserved for women candidates.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Reservation and relaxation for Physical Handicapped category candidates in civil services examination is a matter of government policy and courts cannot embark on it, the Supreme Court said today.A bench headed by Ranjan Gogoi set aside the judgement of the Madras High Court and the view taken by Delhi High Court that “increasing the number of attempts for Physically Handicapped candidates belonging to General Category from 4 to 7 with effect from the 2007 Examination and not proportionally increasing the number of attempts for Physically Handicapped candidates belonging to OBC Category from 7 to 10, is discriminatory and arbitrary”.The apex court bench said “the horizontal reservation and relaxation for Physically Handicapped Category candidates for Civil Services Examination, is a matter of Governmental policy and the Government after considering the relevant materials have extended relaxation and concessions to the Physically Handicapped candidates belonging to the Reserved Category as well as General Category. “It is not in the domain of the courts to embark upon an inquiry as to whether a particular public policy is wise and acceptable or whether better policy could be evolved.” The bench, also comprising Justice Ashok Bhushan, said “the Court can only interfere if the policy framed is absolutely capricious and non-informed by reasons, or totally arbitrary, offending the basic requirement of the Article 14 of the Constitution.”The verdict came on appeal filed by the Centre challenging two judgements of the high courts which allowed Physically Handicapped students of OBC to avail 10 attempts instead of 7 attempts in the Civil Services Examination. Both the High Court’s had held that since the attempts for Physically Handicapped candidates belonging to General Category have been increased from 4 to 7 with effect from 2007 Civil Services Examination, there should be proportionate increase in attempts to be taken by Physically Handicapped Candidates belonging to the OBC Category. The apex court said when the attempts for exams of Physically Handicapped candidates of OBC Category as well as those of in General Category are made equal, there is no question of discrimination as the candidate belonging to OBC Category has already been given ten years relaxation in age which give them a relaxation of three more years.It said it was not a case of treating “unequals as equal” but a case of extending concessions and relaxations to the Physically Handicapped candidates belonging to General Category as well as Physically Handicapped belonging to OBC Category. “Physically Handicapped Category is a Category in itself.A person who is physically handicapped, be it Physically Handicapped of a General Category or OBC Category, suffering from similar disability has to be treated alike in extending the relaxation and concessions. Both being provided 7 attempts to appear in Civil Services Examination, no discrimination or arbitrariness can be found in the above scenario”, the bench said.