Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s proposal to bring in a legislation providing 12% reservation to Muslims in educational institutions and employment has received a lot of flak from the Opposition.
At present, Muslims are enjoying four per cent reservation in Telangana. If this quota is increased to 12%, the total reservations in the state would go up to 58%, which is eight per cent more than the ceiling prescribed by the Supreme Court. Therefore, it would require a Constitutional amendment to enhance the quota.
Provision of 12% reservations to Muslims was one of the major promises made by the chief minister during the 2014 elections.
“We will bring pressure on the Centre to amend the Ninth Schedule of the Constitution to accommodate the enhanced quota for Muslims,” KCR told the assembly. The Opposition leaders are, however, questioning the feasibility of the move.
“There is absolutely no clarity on how KCR wants to increase the quota for Muslims. He knows that the BJP-led government at the Centre will not agree for a Constitutional amendment. He is just trying to hoodwink Muslims,” leader of Opposition in the legislative council Mohammad Ali Shabbir said.
He reminded that it was the Congress government, headed by YS Rajasekhar Reddy, which had introduced four per cent quota for Muslims in 2007, well within the 50 per cent quota prescribed by the Supreme Court.
“So, it is practically not possible to provide 12 per cent quota for Muslims,” Shabbir said.
BJP, too, on Thursday criticised the proposal.
“KCR’s statement reiterating that his government will provide for 12 per cent reservation to Muslims is not just a blatant lie, but also unconstitutional and uncouth minority vote bank politics”, Telangana BJP’s official spokesperson, Krishna Saagar Rao said.
KCR declared that if the NDA government does not cooperate, his government would not hesitate to move the Supreme Court.