Rajasthan OBC quota set to be challenged in SC, Gurjars warn of stir
The increase in reservation will benefit five backward classes–the Gurjar, Banjara, Gadiya Lohar, Rebari and Gadariya–who have been brought under the Most Backward Classes category.jaipur Updated: Oct 27, 2017 20:41 IST
The Samta Andolan Samiti on Friday said it will file a contempt petition in the Supreme Court against the Rajasthan government’s decision to raise the other backward class (OBC) quota from 21% to 26%.
Meanwhile, the Gurjars have warned of a fresh agitation if the community is denied reservation.
The Rajasthan Assembly on Thursday passed the bill increasing the reservation of Rajasthan backward classes in educational institutions and in government jobs from 21% to 26% that will take the total reservation in the state to 54%.
The Rajasthan Backward Classes (Reservation of Seats in Educational Institutions in the State and of Appointments and Posts in Services under the State) Bill, 2017, was passed with a voice vote.
The increase in reservation will benefit five backward classes–the Gurjar, Banjara, Gadiya Lohar, Rebari and Gadariya–who have been brought under the Most Backward Classes category.
Samta Andolan Samiti state president Parashar Narayan Sharma, however, said the government’s move is in violation of the Supreme Court directive.
“We have already challenged the hiking of quota beyond 50% in the Supreme Court on an earlier government order.
“The court has ruled that the status quo be maintained till it is hearing the case,” Sharma told Hindustan Times.
“But the state government has still gone ahead and brought this new bill.”
In 2015, the Rajasthan High Court quashed the state government act providing 5% reservation to Gurjars under the Special Backward category.
Samta Andolan challenged the government decision in the high court, which said the OBC commission report was biased and quashed it.
Parashar said the state government had filed a Special Leave Petition in the Supreme Court in January 2016, against the high court order.
Samta Andolan too filed a plea, saying the state government was providing reservation beyond the 50% limit set by the Supreme Court. The apex court had upheld the high court order and directed that status quo be maintained till the hearing was on.
Gurjar leader Himmat Singh said the government bill has only given a “lollipop” to the community. “This bill doesn’t actually speak of increasing reservation from 21% to 26%. It only gives power to the government to do so,” said Singh.
He further said that as per the agreement with the Gurjars, the government had to raise quota from 21% to 26% and also define the categories under the Most Backward Classes, which has not been done. “If we are once again denied reservation then we have no option but to hit the streets once again.”
The Gurjar community has staged a number of stirs, some of them violent, and has lost close to 70 people in it’s over decade-long fight for reservation.