Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday alleged that the opposition parties were “bent upon” creating controversies over a new body for the backward classes as members of these sections handed out a “drubbing” to them in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls. Last week, the Cabinet had approved the setting up of the National Commission for Socially and Educationally Backward Classes (NCSEBC), a new body for the welfare of the backward classes which will have constitutional powers.
“The opposition parties are rattled by the goodwill that the Modi government will garner among the backward classes as it has fulfilled one of their long-pending demands. Thus, they are resorting to a disinformation campaign and disruption of Rajya Sabha out of their sheer fear of losing (elections),” Naidu said.
Claiming that the opposition was “bent upon” creating controversies, the Union Information and Broadcasting Minister said, “They are blaming us for the posts of chairmen in Constitutional bodies like the backward classes commission lying vacant. These posts were lying vacant for longer periods during their regimes.”
Informing about the new commission, he said it will have judicial powers to summon an accused to appear before it and will also have powers to question the states on implementation of policies for the backward classes.
Naidu also mentioned that a delegation of all party MPs had met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and requested him for Constitutional powers for the backward classes commission.
The prime minister took a decision in this regard only after he was convinced and his “historic” decision was welcomed by all, including the former chairmen of the commission and other leaders of these communities, he added.
The commission has been approved by the Cabinet and now, a bill will be introduced in Parliament. Any addition or deletion of castes in the central list of OBCs will be carried out in Parliament.
While approving setting up of the NCSEBC, the Cabinet had also decided to repeal the law under which the National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC) was set up.
The NCBC is a statutory body for the backward classes under the Social Justice Ministry. It will be replaced by the NCSEBC.
Unlike NCBC, NCSEBC will have powers to look into the cases of grievances of the backward classes.
The new commission will comprise a chairperson, a vice-chairperson and three members.