THE HARYANA Cabinet Monday gave its nod to a bill providing reservation in government jobs and educational institutions to Jats and four other castes.
The move comes a day after protesters threatened to resume their agitation if their demands were not met by March 31, the last day of the Vidhan Sabha’s Budget Session.
The draft reservation bill proposes six per cent reservation for Jats and four other castes in Class-I and II government jobs, and 10 per cent reservation for the five castes in educational institutions and Class III and IV government jobs.
Sources said the Cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar cleared the draft Bill amid dissent from a few members. It will now be tabled in the Vidhan Sabha for further discussion.
Sources privy to the draft reservation bill told The Indian Express that the Cabinet has also cleared to moot a separate bill for setting up of a
Haryana Backward Classes Commission and giving it a constitutional status.
“As on date, the Backward Classes quota has two parts – Backward Classes (A) and (B). While there is 16 per cent quota for BC (A), it is 11 per cent for BC (B). The government aims at creating another category (C) to include Jats and other five castes under the Backward Classes category,” one of the senior officials of Haryana government told Express.
The Jats had given an ultimatum till April 3 to the state government to meet their demand of reservation. A meeting of Jats from 13 states is likely to be held in New Delhi on April 3 to discuss the reservation issue and further course of action.
Atleast 30 people lost their lives and over 320 were injured, besides private and government property suffered losses to the tune of hundreds of crores of rupees, during the Jat agitation and subsequent violence in February.
Talking to The Indian Express on phone, Yashpal Malik, president, All India Jat Aarakshan Sangharsh Samiti, an umbrella group of various Jat organisations, said, “It is a positive move if the Cabinet has passed the draft bill today. We have heard that the government has proposed six per cent reservation to Jats and four other castes in class I and II government jobs. We do not agree with that. We are okay with the rest of the provisions that we have come to know. We will hold a meeting in New Delhi on April 3 to decide further course of action. By that time, I hope the Bill will be passed in the Haryana Vidhan Sabha as well and a notification issued. We had demanded 12 per cent reservation in Class I and II government jobs. If the government does not give that, we will protest.”
Malik added, “The system of reservation in Haryana is totally confusing. They are granting 16 per cent reservation to castes that are covered under A category in Backward Classes, while the population of these castes is merely 8 per cent. If they grant six per cent reservation to Jats and other castes, it is not acceptable because the population of these castes is 35 per cent and thus the reservation should be atleast 12 per cent if not more”.
After Monday’s proceedings of the ongoing Budget Session concluded, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar told mediapersons that the “Bill for granting reservation to Jats can be brought to Vidhan Sabha any day during the ongoing Session”.
Inadequate relief: BJP MLA
Speaking during the discussion on Haryana’s Budget for 2016-17, BJP MLA Gian Chand Gupta said only Rs 31 crore has been given till now to shopkeepers who have suffered losses worth crores. He said the loss cannot be compensated with this amount.