Proposal sent to Centre for 17 new castes in SC ranks: Akhilesh

Akhilesh Yadav

Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday said in keeping with the promise made in the Samajwadi Party election manifesto, his government had sent a proposal to the Centre to include 17 backward castes in the Schedule Caste category.

Addressing a convention at the party office, the CM said the proposal, which covers 17 backward castes, including Nishad, Mallah, Batham, Kahar, Kasyap, Kewat and others, was sent to the Centre yesterday.

He said party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav had, during his tenure as CM in 2005, sent a proposal to the Centre in this regard which, however, had been later withdrawn by the Mayawati government.

Talking about the absence of recent figures on number of people belonging to backward castes in the country, Akhilesh said it was a campaign launched by Mulayam which had led the Centre to give its nod to a caste-based census, a demand which was supported by Sharad Yadav and Lalu Prasad Yadav.

Referring to the state budget, which is to be presented on Tuesday, Akhilesh said his government was committed to extending facilities to all sections of society.

He accused the previous Mayawati government of not effecting any developmental work and said there was not a single budget of the previous regime in which money was "not spent on stones".

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