After the Modi government announced on Monday that it will bring in a constitutional amendment that increases reservation quota to benefit the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), a stumped Congress has called the move "jumla".
Former Uttarakhand CM and Congress leader Harish Rawat has reacted to the move saying,
"It is just a political gimmick, an election jumla and nothing else, just like their Acchhe Din, promise of doubling farmers' income... it is nothing else but a jumla," he said.
However, the Congress itself had pledged to carve out reservation for EWS of all communities without prejudice to existing reservation for SC/ST and OBCs in its 2009 and 2014 manifesto. But it never fulfilled the promise.
The party is now stumped that the Modi government has gone ahead had announced the quota for economically poor.
Sources say that the constitutional amendment which is being brought in by the Modi government will be a gamechanger in terms of reservation policy, especially in a big election year, since it is agnostic of caste and religious considerations.
As per sources, the reservations will go up from the current 50% to 60% and will be applicable for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) to get reservation in jobs and in education, thereby serving as a huge mode up upliftment. The new reservations will be applicable to Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) across religions.
Sources have said that the increased 10% reservation will go to the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS). The historic amendment goes in line with the Modi government's policy of junking caste-based appeasement. As per the constitutional amendment, sources have confirmed that every household where the income is below Rs 8 lakh, individuals across caste will be eligible for the said quota.
Furthermore, as per inputs, the Modi government will table the constitutional amendment on the floor of the house on Tuesday. Two articles will need to be amended - Articles 15 and 16 - in order to enable the additional 10% quota.
The move is likely to serve as a big counter-weight to the narrative of the BJP being a pro-upper caste party, and is bound to have huge ramifications in the lead-up to 2019.
More details to follow.