On 9th January, the Rajya Sabha approved amending Constitution to provide 10% reservation to general category in job and education. Passage of ‘The Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty Fourth Amendment) Bill 2019’ in the upper house becomes one such instance in history of Indian parliament when opposition unity reflected just in words and not in actions as it had 165 votes in favour and just 7 against.
The Bill now has entered the last legislative phase in which it requires the approval of the President of India. In midst of its passage in the upper house, Rashtriya Janata Dal leader in the Rajya Sabha, Prof. Manoj Kumar Jha vehemently opposed the motion.
During his speech, Jha came up with a toy and said, “This act of 10% reservation for the economically weaker section is just like a toy which is just for show but would not make any sound.”
He further added, “Whenever reservation extended to a group it is based on studies and substantive documents, whereas in this case, the government’s decision is bereft of any backup data and the bill is not legally and constitutionally tenable.”
Targeting the government he asked- Mandal came with voluminous documents. Where is the data for this? …You are basically testing the waters and this will pave the way for the removal of caste-based reservations. If you are so committed why are you scared to touch the private sector? Why are you silent on Dalits and Muslims?
In conversation with Newsd, Manoj Kumar Jha while expressing his anguish asserted that “A window has been opened which will be converted into a door in subsequent years to do away with the ‘Caste based Reservation’.”
Prior to this RJD leader, Jay Prakash Narayan Yadav in Lok Sabha demanded the release of Socio-Economic and Caste Census (SECC) and raise the existing reservation cap for SC, OBC and minorities.
RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav also slammed the government saying the reservation formula was created not to solve economic issues of the people but to solve caste issues. He even demanded that the government must make public the basis of the quota formula.