Patna, Sep 24 (IANS): As the BJP-led Centre has passed Women Reservation Bill, eyeing the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, the opposition bloc INDIA has raked up the issues of quota within quota and caste census in Bihar.
There is no doubt that NDA will contest the elections next year, claiming that it created history by passing the Women's Reservation Bill. But the way the leaders of RJD and JD-U from INDIA are trying to rake up the issue of OBC reservation and caste census in women's reservation, it may put BJP in trouble.
Till now, RJD has been opposing women's reservation. But after the passage of the quota bill, RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav said that “instead of 33 per cent, you (BJP) should give reservation to 50 per cent women.”
He said, “People belonging to OBC don’t easily accept defeat and fight over their demands. Modi government should know very well that if BJP dares to take away the rights of 60 per cent OBC population of the country, then OBCs will teach them a lesson.”
“We have been demanding for decades that women's reservation should not be 33 per cent but 50 per cent and it should be implemented immediately and there should be reservation for SC, ST, OBC and minority women in it,” Tejashwi Yadav claimed.
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar has also demanded caste census and quota within women quota, which is being seen as a counter to NDA's women's reservation.
With this, opposition bloc INDIA is trying to accomplish twin goals -- by supporting women reservation bill, it is trying to garner the support of the fair sex, and trying to dent OBC and backward classes vote bank, on which BJP has a strong hold.
BJP spokesperson Rakesh Kumar Singh says, “Till now, the opposition has neither had a clear policy nor a clear intention regarding women's reservation. Even today, they are trying to put this bill on hold again.”
He said, “If JD-U and RJD are so concerned for OBCs, then why the report of the Backward Commission has not been made public till now. It’s been long since the panchayat elections were held.”
Congress spokesperson Asit Nath Tiwari says, “There are two shortcomings in the bill. Firstly, there is no time limit in this. Secondly, there is no provision of reservation for OBC. In such a situation, by raising these issues, the party has tried to give a message to the OBCs that the BJP does not want their welfare.”
Political expert Ajay Kumar says, “There is no doubt that the BJP government got the Women's Reservation Bill, which was pending for 27 years, passed in Parliament, and it will definitely raise this issue in the elections. Hence INDIA is also preparing to play the reservation card.”