BJP slams Rahul, Mamata over reservation issue; accuses INDIA bloc of appeasement politics


PTI, May 23, 2024, 4:29 PM IST

The BJP Thursday launched a fresh attack on the INDIA bloc on the issue of reservation, accusing the opposition grouping of indulging in appeasement politics, and said the people of the country will give them a fitting reply in the Lok Sabha polls.

The BJP’s charge came a day after West Bengal Chief Minister and TMC supremo Mamata Banerjee said she will not accept a Calcutta High Court order that scrapped the OBC status of several classes granted in the state since 2010, and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi claimed the system is heavily aligned against lower castes and his party aims to fix this.

Latching on to their comments, senior BJP leader Shivraj Singh Chouhan said, ”Appeasement is the dose and diet of parties like the Congress and the TMC. Without this, they cannot survive even a day.” The former Madhya Pradesh chief minister alleged after coming at the helm in West Bengal, Banerjee pursued vote bank politics and gave OBC certificates to a number of castes and the beneficiaries included Muslims, Bangladeshis and Rohingyas.

”The Calcutta High Court’s decision in the matter that came on Wednesday was a tight slap on Banerjee’s vote bank politics,” he told a press conference at the party headquarters here.

The Calcutta High Court on Wednesday struck down as illegal the OBC status of several classes in West Bengal granted since 2010. The court observed that the inclusion of 77 classes of Muslims in the list was to ”treat them as vote bank”.

Reacting sharply, Banerjee asserted she ”will not accept” the order and challenge it in a higher court.

Chouhan slammed the West Bengal chief minister for her refusal to accept the High Court’s order and termed her remarks an insult to the Constitution.

”What does Mamata Banerjee think of herself? Is she above the Constitution? This is the height of arrogance and anarchy,” he charged and said the TMC chief has no right to continue holding the post of chief minister who provided reservation on the basis of religion in violation of the Constitution.

On Gandhi’s statement, Chouhan asserted the BJP has been saying for several years that the Congress is anti-poor, anti-Dalit, anti-tribal and anti-backward classes. ”Rahul Gandhi accepted this truth yesterday.” Addressing an event in Panchkula on Wednesday, Gandhi had said the system is heavily aligned against lower castes and that he knows the system from inside as his grandmother and father were prime ministers and later he used to visit the PM’s house when Manmohan Singh lived there.

The Congress leader claimed that the country’s 90 per cent population including the Dalits, OBCs, tribal communities and the minorities does not have representation in the country’s narrative and power structure, and said his party aims to ensure their participation in the country’s progress.

”The Congress has always snatched away the rights of the Dalits, OBCs and tribals. The Congress-ruled states including Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka have committed the crime and sin of robbing the rights of OBC by providing reservation to minorities from their shares,” Chouhan charged.

He alleged that while the Congress did not give Constitutional status to the OBC Commission for about 40 years, its government committed the ”sin” of ending the reservation for Dalits, OBCs and tribals in the educational institutions like the Aligarh Muslim University in Uttar Pradesh and Jamia Millia Islamia in Delhi.

”Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar once said at Rally in Punjab that Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru did not do anything for Dalits and backwards. Such has been the mindset of the Congress since the beginning,” Chouhan charged.

The BJP leader alleged that the Congress and other constituents of the INDIA bloc have been engaged in taking away the rights of Dalits, backwards and tribals while pursuing politics of appeasement.

”The BJP will not allow this conspiracy to go on. People are seeing the truth as the INDI alliance’s policy of appeasement stands exposed. Now people will reply to it. The BJP will form its government by winning 370 seats on its won and with the NDA getting more than 400 seats (in the Lok Sabha polls),” he added.

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