SC/ST govt job promotions quota bill moved in Rajya Sabha amid high drama


"My party is fully committed to the concept of social justice," he said.

Jaitley said BJP supports the affirmative action for uplift of those who have been historically deprived of opportunities, but sought changes in the bill pertaining to efficiency of services while granting such promotions.

Urging the government to reconsider the provisions in the bill concerning Article 335, he said that the bill in its present form runs the risk of being struck down by courts.

BSP chief Mayawati, who has been pushing for the bill, said it has been brought to the House with great difficulties and hoped it would pass with comfortable majority.

She slammed Congress for the plight of SCs and STs in the country and its failure to take action for their uplift.

Mayawati also advocated reservation for economically weaker sections of upper castes as well as backwards.

Balachandra Mungekar (Cong) said it is a very crucial bill and reservation in promotion is absolutely necessary. He pointed out that of the 84 secretaries in the central government, none belongs to SC/ST category.

T K Ranagrajan (CPI-M), Shivanand Tiwari (JD-U) and D Bandopadhyay (AITC) also participated in the debate.

Mayawati, who virtually arm-twisted the government to bring the quota bill for SCs/STs, slammed Congress for not doing any such thing because of which condition of these communities deteriorated.

She said if the intention of the Congress government was clear on the issue, the situation would not have deteriorated to the present extent.

Congress ruled the nation for a long time but sadly BSP has to explain to its MPs the need for quota in promotions to SC/ST, she said.

"It is a matter of sadness....the truth is bitter. We only know how we could get the bill moved in a situation where under a planned conspiracy the bill was opposed. It is being portrayed as if it is for the first time that such a move has been initiated by the Centre, whereas the fact is such provisions existed but faced impediments," she said.

... contd.

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