The gruesome events in Rajasthan have proved that the existing politicised policy of reservation is going to be the prime obstacle in India becoming an egalitarian State. This policy is the child of the vested interests and no one in the corridors of power will raise a voice against it. Each one tends to outbid others in offering sops on caste lines for votes.
The scenario in Rajasthan was truly frightening. Apart from the precious lives lost in the violence at different places, the clash between the Meenas and Gujjars on the issue of granting the latter ST status does not augur well for the future. Though the tensions have ended, it could flare up again at the slightest provocation. The cynicism of our leaders was evident when Parliament passed the resolution that the creamy layer would be included in quotas, thus negating the principles laid down by the founding fathers of our Constitution. A new system in which the only criterion will be economic backwardness should replace the present quota system.
When the Gujjars are so empowered, so resourceful and have so much power that they can affect railways, burn buses and disrupt the capital, do they really need reservations? If they channelise this destructive power for philanthropic purposes, they themselves can achieve greater heights. I wonder if they are really backward.
Former PM VP Singh must be a happy man today as the seeds of reservation he sowed in 1991 have not only sprouted and grown, but have begun to bear fruit.
Kulwant H Singh
The violence we saw is the outcome of vote-bank politics at its worst. It’s time for an all-party consensus to stop this trend and emphasise that leaders are there to lead, not to mislead.
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