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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Lalu, Mayawati slam Centre’s decision of not conducting caste census

On Thursday, the Centre had told the top court that “a caste-wise enumeration in the Census has been given up as a matter of policy from 1951 onwards and thus castes other than SCs and STs have not been enumerated in any of the Census since 1951 till today”.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
September 24, 2021 11:41:44 am
Mayawati said on Friday that the clear refusal by the Centre is going to hurt the whole society and their future. (File Photo)

A day after the Centre informed the Supreme Court that a caste census in 2021 “would not be feasible”, Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati and former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav hit out at the Narendra Modi government over the decision.

Mayawati said the move has exposed the BJP’s electoral interests and duplicity when it comes to keeping their word.

“The Central government’s refusal to conduct a caste census of backward classes by filing an affidavit in the Hon’ble Supreme Court is very serious and very contemplative, which exposes the OBC politics of BJP’s electoral interests and the difference in their words and deeds,” Mayawati said in a tweet in Hindi.

She added, “Like the SCs and STs, the demand for conducting a caste census for the OBCs has also gained a lot of emphasis in the country. However, the clear refusal by the Centre is going to hurt the whole society and their future. It is similar to the way they are hurting people by not filling up their backlog in jobs.”

Lalu Prasad Yadav, too, took to the microblogging site to express his discontent.

“The BJP and RSS are deceiving the backward classes. The government should be ashamed of themselves if they cannot add a column in the Census form to calculate the caste count of more than 60 per cent of the population of the country,” he said in a tweet in Hindi.

On Thursday, the Centre had told the top court that “a caste-wise enumeration in the Census has been given up as a matter of policy from 1951 onwards and thus castes other than SCs and STs have not been enumerated in any of the Census since 1951 till today”.

Its affidavit said that “while the preparation for the 1951 Census, the first after independence, was underway, the Government of India had decided on the policy of official discouragement of caste. It was decided that in general, no race/ caste/ tribe enquiries should be made and such enquiries should be restricted to the Scheduled Castes and Tribes notified by the President of India in pursuance of Articles 341 and 342 of the Constitution”.

The Centre’s submission in the apex court comes at a time when it is facing demands for a caste census from Opposition parties, and even allies such as JD(U).

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