from daijiworld's special correspondent
Panaji, Nov 16: The Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) has demanded that at least 12 Assembly seats be reserved for the scheduled tribes and other backward communities in the state during the forthcoming Assembly elections.
In a press note, NCP Spokesman and General Secretary Surendra Furtado said that the ST community has been over the years been deliberately ignored and sidelined and whenever any political inroads were made by fellow members they were scuttled.
He pointed the instance of Piedade Noronha who was elected as the chairperson of the Margao Municipal Council, but casteists elements worked overtime to dethrone her even before she could firmly sit in saddle to undertake developmental works'
Furtado lamented that vested interests were working overtime to ensure that the ST bill which was sanctioned by the parliament over four years ago remains unimplemented in the state despite other less progressive states doing so.
The NCP spokesman reiterated that constituencies which have a significant presence of Schedule Tribes and other such backward communities ought to be reserved for members of the community, and cited constituencies like Taleigao, Loutolim and others.
Unless such pro-active measures are adopted the community will continue to remain stagnant in the state’s social fabric, he added.