The job promotion quota bill was meant for social justice, the Congress said Thursday, a day after the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) called the introduction of the bill a tactic to divert public attention from the controversies over coal block allotments.
"It is our commitment for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes that we brought the bill," Congress spokesperson Rashid Alvi told IANS.
"But we will not hesitate to say, (even) if we had brought the bill just in the interest of parliament, one should understand how serious we are towards functioning of parliament," he said.
Alvi's comment comes as BJP Wednesday said the reservation bill was brought in a suspicious manner, to divert attention from the alleged coal scam.
The main opposition party has been stalling parliament over the alleged scam. It has also been demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The party, however, softened its stand last Saturday, saying it would allow debate if coal allocations were cancelled and fair probe ordered.
Government has not shown any inclination to accepting these demands. A bill for providing reservations in promotions to dalits and tribals was meanwhile approved by union cabinet Tuesday and introduced in Rajya Sabha Wednesday.
The bill could not be taken up amid the din created by the BJP protest as well as the Samajwadi Party that is against the bill.