Quota stir: Govt invites Gujjar panel for parleys, Bainsla remains non-committal
A 16-member delegation of Gujjar leaders reached Jaipur Monday evening to hold talks with a group of ministersUpdated: May 14, 2018 22:45 IST
A 16-member delegation of Gujjar leaders reached Jaipur Monday evening to hold talks with a group of ministers on the community’s proposed agitation from May 15 to press for 5% reservation from within the 21% OBC quota in Rajasthan.
Community leader Colonel (retd) Kirori Singh Bainsla, who has given the call to revive the agitation, is not participating in the parleys. The delegation was chosen at a meeting held at Bainsla’s house in Hindaun City town of Karauli earlier in the day.
“The government sent a proposal for holding talks in Jaipur. Our delegation will meet the government. The deliberations of the meetings will be shared with the community tomorrow (May 15) at Adda village in Bayana,” Bainsla told reporters.
The community plans to launch the agitation from Adda village.
Himmat Singh, the spokesperson of the Gujjar Sangharsh Samiti, said that proposal for holding talks had come from the district collector. “We will meet the government and share the meeting details with the community in the mahapanchayat,” he said.
Bainsla said they will accept the decision of mahapanchayat. “We may continue with the agitation or drop it,” he said.
Bainsla said the community was not interested in agitation but the government has to fulfill its demand for 5% reservation within the 50% limit. Gujjars are demanding bifurcation of the other backward class (OBC) quota, setting aside 5% for Gujjars.
Meanwhile, another group of Gujjars, led by Akhil Bhartiya Gurjar Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti Ramvir Singh Bidhuri, has announced a panchayat in Moroli village against the mahapanchayat called by Bainsla.
Bidhuri, a former MLA from Badarpur in Delhi, said the Moroli panchayat will decide on launching a non-violent agitation to demand reservation.
He said Bainsla has misguided the community. “We had opposed his signing the pact with government on May 28, 2015,” Bidhuri said, adding the government should talk to the other group also.
Earlier, community members from 80 villages had announced to boycott the agitation call given by Bainsla.
Meanwhile, Security has been tightened in Bharatpur. Dive companies of Rajasthan Armed Constabulary (RAC) and three companies of Railway Protection Force (RPF) have been deployed in Bayana.
“Section 144 has been imposed in Bharatpur district till May 31 and additional police force sought in view of the mahapanchayat in Bayana,” Bharatpur Divisional Commissioner Subir Singh said.
The violent Gujjar agitations for quota since 2007 have seen deaths of 72 people.
The Rajasthan Assembly had in October last year passed a bill to raise OBC reservation from 21 to 26 per cent to provide five per cent quota to the Gujjars and other castes. However, the high court stayed the bill as it would have increased the reservation to 54 per cent. Later, the Supreme Court also directed the state government not to exceed the 50 per cent reservation limit.