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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

Janardan Dwivedi's quota remarks 'trial balloon': BJP

PTI  New Delhi, February 05, 2014
First Published: 20:03 IST(5/2/2014) | Last Updated: 20:27 IST(5/2/2014)

BJP on Wednesday dubbed Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi's pitch against reservation on caste lines as a "trial balloon" and charged the ruling party with deliberately trying to initiate a new debate to sidetrack "anti-government" sentiment on issues of corruption and price rise.

"This seems to me like a trial balloon...There is a deliberate attempt to start a new debate in the country. This is not right," said BJP's deputy leader in Rajya Sabha Ravi Shankar Prasad.

He said "our apprehension is that on issues like unemployment, price rise, corruption and lack of development and security, there is strong sentiment against the government.

"To sidetrack this, two attempts are being made - an attempt to start a communal-secular debate and the second is this new trial balloon," he said.

He said the issue is serious and notice has to be taken of it as it has been raised by a senior general secretary of Congress who is considered close to the Gandhi family and is considered the voice of Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi for writing their speeches.

Prasad said BJP raised the issue strongly in Parliament and government had to say there is no such proposal.

He said whatever Congress' gameplan is the people will defeat it as they have seen the ruling party's track record on governance and other issues like corruption, price rise and "lack" of development and also seen Narendra Modi's record.

Government and the Congress party, however, distanced themselves from the remarks of Dwivedi against reservation on caste lines and favouring reservation on economic lines.

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