The Gujjar community's agitation for 5% reservation continued unabated on Wednesday despite the Rajasthan government clarifying that it would hold back 4% of the jobs, in addition to the 1% already being given to them, till a final court decision.
In a bid to pacify the community, the government announced on Tuesday that the jobs would be set aside till the court clears the quotas.
"...Gujjars would be entitled to a one percent quota in the posts and another 4% would be held back till the high court clears the 5% reservation promised to special backward castes (SBCs)," said state home minister Shanti Kumar Dhariwal.
The minister pointed out that 4,000 posts against 100,000 vacancies would be reserved for the Gujjars and other communities clubbed in the SBCs.
This announcement was a major shift in government stand. The Ashok Gehlot government had till now proposed to set aside only "notional posts" for SBCs till the high court verdict.
The Gujjars have, however, refused to call off their agitation that started last week.
"We will not end the agitation till the government announces five percent reservation to us," K S Bainsla, convener of the Gujjar Arakshan Sangharsh Samiti, told IANS.
The Gujjars have called for Bharatpur shutdown Dec 30.
Train services between Delhi and Mumbai and a few other sectors continued to be affected on Wednesday as Gujjars continued to squat on a railway track near Bayana in Bharatpur district, about 150 km from the state capital Jaipur.
Gujjars had decided on a rail blockade on Dec 20, after holding a 'mahapanchayat' in Bayana.
Following the decision, hundreds of protesters squatted on the rail tracks in Piloo Ka Pura, forcing the railways to divert or cancel a few trains.
In July 2009, the Rajasthan government had announced 5% reservation for Gujjars and 14% for the economically backward classes, taking the total reservation in the state for various sections of society to 68%.
The high court in October 2009 stayed the quota in jobs and educational institutions in the state for Gujjars and the economically backward classes as the total reservation had exceeded the cap of 50%.