Upper castes should get 25% quota, says Union minister Ramdas Athawale
Union minister of state for social justice and empowerment Ramdas Athawale on Saturday supported reservation for upper castes saying and said reservation could not be ended, but 25% reservation could be given to the upper castes.
Speaking at ‘Meet the Press’ organised at Pink City Press Club in Jaipur, he said upper castes in several states were demanding reservation — Marathas in Maharashtra, Patidar/ Patels in Gujarat, Jats in Haryana, Rajputs in Rajasthan, Thakurs and Brahmins in Uttar Pradesh. “Without disturbing the reservation for SC/STs and OBCs, 25% reservation should be given to the upper castes,” he said.
However, Athawale said till a law is passed in the Parliament, the problem of reservation could not be solved. He supported reservation in cricket and other sports as well as in the army.
Athawale said the upper castes in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, who had protested on September 6, on amendment to the SC/ST Act will be called to Delhi for discussions. “The act was for the protection of Dalits, but if it is misused then my ministry will look into it,” he said.
He said that no change has been made in the SC/ST Act and it is the same as it was in 1989.
Athawale expressed confidence BJP would come to power in the upcoming Rajasthan election, as chief minister Vasundhara Raje had done good work. “In 2019 general elections, BJP will win more than 300 seats with RPI’s support,” he said.
‘I am not bothered about fuel hike’
When asked if he was bothered about hike in fuel prices, Athawale said, “I am not bothered as I am minister and I get free fuel. If I was not minister then yes, I would have been troubled with the increase in fuel price.” He said price of petrol and diesel should come down.