Fighting a tough electoral battle in Bihar, RJD president Lalu Prasad on Monday dared Prime Minister Narendra Modi to scrap quotas after RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat suggested a review of the reservation policy, contending it had been used for political ends.
“The so-called tea seller and recently turned backward (Narendra) Modi should tell if he will finish reservations at his master (Mohan) Bhagwat’s bidding,” Lalu tweeted.
Bhagwat had on Sunday pitched for a review of the reservation policy, maintaining it had been used for political ends and suggested setting up of an apolitical committee to examine who needed the facility and for how long.
Lalu, one of the enduring icons of post-Mandal politics, asserted his party would ensure quotas were increased in proportion to the population of the targeted groups.
“You talk of doing away with reservation, we will increase it in proportion to the population. If you have drunk your mother’s milk (mai ka doodh), then have it scrapped, each would know his strength,” he said in another tweet.
“No matter how much RSS and BJP try to create an atmosphere for finishing reservation, Dalits and backwards who constitute 80% of the country will give a befitting reply,” he said.
Bhagwat, in an interview to RSS mouthpiece ‘Organiser’ and ‘Panchjanya’, had suggested constitution of a committee with respresentatives from the civil society to go into the issue of reservation.
A committee of people genuinely concerned for the interest of the whole nation and committed for social equality, including some representatives from the society, should decide which categories require reservation and for how long, Bhagwat had said.
“The non-political committee like autonomous commissions should be the implementation authority; political authorities should supervise them for honesty and integrity,” he said.
Arguing that the reservation policy based on social backwardness being followed now was not in line with what the makers of the Indian Constitution had in mind, Bhagwat said had quotas been implemented as per the vision of the Constitution makers questions on the issue would not have surfaced.
Meanwhile, NDA ally Rashtriya Lok Samata Party (RLSP) said, “Reservation in India is a ‘settled issue’ as mandated in the Constitution.” “Beyond this, we have nothing to say,” its chief general secretary Shivraj Singh told reporters here.