Jharkhand CM Soren invites BJP to join delegation to PM over caste census
Jharkhand chief minister Hemant Soren said in assembly on Wednesday that he has requested a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss the contentious issue of caste census. Soren added that the Opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was also invited to join the delegation to meet the PM.
“I have written to the Prime Minister seeking his time. I want to lead a delegation of all parties to present our views on caste census. I want members from both treasury and opposition benches to join us,” said Soren.
Reacting to the CM’s statement, senior BJP legislator and former minister Neelkanth Singh Munda said while his party was ready to cooperate on the issue of caste census, the CM should also take up the issue of “dwindling population of tribals in the state”.
Sudesh Mahto, former deputy CM and president of AJSU Party, an ally of the BJP, asked the CM to also inform the House about his electoral promise to expand the reservation for the Other Backward Castes (OBCs) in the state to 27% from existing 14 %. AJSU Party, too, has taken a clear stand in favour of caste census.
“It’s good that you have sought time on caste census, let us know what happened to the 27% OBC reservation. That should not be an issue now as the Centre has already delegated the power to list OBCs to the states,” Mahto said.
Replying to this, CM said the government was working on it and he was in favour of passing a unanimous resolution on OBC reservation as a message to the Centre.