No reason to oppose 10% govt job quota for poor: Pinarayi

CM allays fears surrounding 10% reservation in govt jobs for financially backward
Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday allayed the concerns of a section of political parties, including the Muslim League, over the new reservation provision for the financially backward section in the general category and said the new law does not undermine the benefit enjoyed by any existing category.

The state cabinet had on October 21 decided to amend the reservation provisions in the Kerala State and Subordinate Services Rules to implement 10 per cent reservation in government jobs for the financially backward section in the general category.

He alleged that the RSS was trying to subvert the reservation meant to uplift the socially backward sections of the population.

"The LDF stands by the policy of maintaining the present level of reservation in government posts for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and the educationally and socially backward sections," Vijayan told reporters here.

He said while ensuring that each community gets the full reservation benefit it deserves, 10 per cent reservation should be made for the poor in the general category.

Vijayan said a constitutional amendment was required and political parties in India, including the Congress and the Left, had supported the Bill in Parliament.

"The law was passed by 323 out of the 326 members present. That law is now being implemented in Kerala and has nationwide implications.

Those who are leading the agitation against the government in the name of this need to embrace this reality," Vijayan said.

He reiterated that the law does not undermine the reservation of any existing category.

On January 7 2019, the Union Council of Ministers had approved 10 per cent reservation in government jobs and educational institutions for the economically weaker section in the general category.

Meanwhile, Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) leaders on Sunday held discussions with community leaders, including the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Yogam (SNDP), seeking support for their scheduled protest on October 28 at Ernakulam.

The IUML had in 2019 criticised the Centres decision to implement 10 per cent quota for the economically weaker sections in the general category and termed it as unconstitutional and a violation of the basic principles of reservation.

The state cabinet, chaired by Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, had on Wednesday decided the criteria for reservation after considering the recommendations of a two-member commission headed by retired Judge K Sasidharan Nair and member Advocate K Rajagopalan Nair.

"The eligible candidates will be selected on the basis of the income of the family and their financial backwardness," a state government release had said.

Currently, 50 per cent reservation is set aside for Scheduled Castes/Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Communities.

(With inputs from PTI)

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