Aiming to checkmate moves of the “Big Three” Yadav leaders to re-create the Muslim-Yadav vote bank in the Hindi heartland, the Congress is pitching in for the implementation of the Justice Ranganath Mishra Commission report.
Senior Congress leaders are proposing splitting up of the existing OBC quota of 27 pc to provide reservation to backward Muslims and Christians.
The commitment of providing reservation to Muslims has been made in the Congress manifesto, they say. The Commission has recommended 10 pc reservation to backward Muslims and 5 pc to other minorities including backward Christians.
Senior Congress leader Arjun Singh said in an interview to a news agency on Wednesday that the party could not just “sleep over the recommendations” of the Justice Ranganath Mishra Commission.
Moves to bifurcate the OBC quota are likely to be resisted by the Yadav leaders: Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, Rashtriya Janata Dal boss Lalu Prasad and Janata Dal (United) president Sharad Yadav.
“The Congress should do better than engage in such misadventures. Any effort at splitting up the existing OBC quota will trigger communal riots across the country,” SP spokesman Mohan Singh said.
RJD leader Jabir Hussain said, “Hell will break loose if the existing OBC quota is tampered with”.
By opening up the Justice Mishra Commission debate, the Congress leaders hope to neutralise the “quota within quota” campaign of the Yadavs.
Ahead of this year’s assembly elections in Bihar, the Congress aims to reach out to the Muslim vote bank. Congress spokesman Shakeel Ahmed said, “The party favours implementation of the commission recommendations, but there should be no political controversy. The Congress favours a broader consensus and a national debate,” he said.