Maharashtra Cabinet

Give 5% Reservation To Muslims In Maharashtra: Rais Shaikh

Maharashtra Cabinet

After the Maharashtra Cabinet approved a the bill to extend 10 per cent reservations to Marathas of the state on Tuesday, Samajwadi Party (SP) MLA Rais Shaikh said that a 5 per cent reservation must be given to Muslims at the earliest to eradicate the backwardness of the community and to do ‘justice’ with them.

Speaking to ANI, the SP MLA alleged that the Muslim community is being ‘ignored’ by the state government.

“When the Maratha community was given reservation by the previous government, on the same day a notification was brought out and a 5 per cent reservation was given to Muslims. But today, we are seeing that Maratha community is getting justice which we welcome but at the same time, the Muslim community is being ignored. We appeal to the government to go through the notification, when you are doing justice, do justice to everybody,” he said.

He further urged Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar to look into the matter and provide reservations to Muslim Community.

“I appeal to Deputy CM Ajit Pawar, who had promised that no injustice will be done to the minorities to look into this and give justice to the minorities of this state,” he said.

The Congress-NCP government had previously given reservation to Muslims through an ordinance.

Notably, the population of the Muslim community in the state is more than 10 per cent. The Justice Rajinder Sachar Commission (2006) and Justice Ranganath Mishra Committee (2004) proved the economic and educational backwardness of the Muslim community with statistics.

In 2009, the Congress-led government formed the Dr Mehmoodur Rehman Committee that recommended 8 per cent reservation for the Muslim community in education and jobs.

The demand for Muslim reservation comes after the Maharashtra Cabinet led by Eknath Shinde approved the bill, extending reservation to Marathas above the 50 per cent mark in a special session of the state legislature.

The bill for 10 per cent Maratha quota that the Mahayuti government of Eknath Shinde has approved on Tuesday is similar to the Socially and Educationally Backward Classes Act, 2018, introduced by the then Devendra Fadnavis government.

This is the third time in a decade that the state has introduced legislation for the Maratha quota.

The decision to convene a special session was prompted by Maratha quota activist Manoj Jarange Patil, who is on a hunger strike at Antarwali Saarati village in Jalna district.

The reservation has been extended based on a report submitted to the state government by the Maharashtra Backward Class Commission (MBCC) headed by chairman Justice (Retired) Sunil Shukre.

The state already has a 10 per cent quota for the Economically Weaker Section (EWS) in which the Marathas are the biggest beneficiaries, claiming 85 per cent of the reservation.

The Maharashtra State Backward Class Commission on Friday submitted a report on the social and educational backwardness of the Maratha community for which it had undertaken a survey of around 2.5 crore homes within a span of only nine days.

The committee proposed a 10 per cent reservation for Marathas in education and jobs, similar to that given in 2018 by the then-state government.

In June 2017, the then Devendra Fadnavis government had constituted the Maharashtra State Backward Class Commission (MSBCC) headed by Justice (retired) MG Gaikwad to study the social, financial and educational status of the Maratha community.

The Commission submitted its report in November 2018, classifying Marathas as a socially and educationally backward class (SEBC).

Meanwhile, members of the OBC Community stage a protest in Beed against Maratha leader Manoj Jarange Patil over the issue of Maratha reservation on Tuesdsay.

“We are not against Maratha reservation but Manoj Jarange’s demand to take reservation from OBC is wrong. He blackmailed the government to end the political reservation of OBC. The government can give separate reservation to Marathas but OBC reservation should not be given…,” said a member of the OBC Community. (ANI)

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