Former Bihar chief minister and Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular) president Jitan Ram Manjhi on Monday suggested that a family should not be provided benefits of reservation for more than two succesive generations. “If two generations of a family have availed the benefits of reservation, then the third generation should not be given the quota facility. To ensure this, there is a need for a review of job quota policy,” Manjhi told reporters in Gaya.
The comment assumes significance as Manjhi, who is an alliance partner of the BJP-led NDA, hails from “Mahadalit” community (a sub section of dalits who are relatively more poor) in Bihar.
The former chief minister, however, sought quota for people belonging to deprived sections in the sand mining work, in Bihar, on the lines of reservation in operation in the state’s Public Distribution System (PDS) in allotment of outlets.
In reply to a query, Manjhi exuded confidence that NDA will form the government in Gujarat in the name of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “Let the results be declared in Gujarat. BJP will form the government there once again,” the former CM said.
He also asked the Congress and Patidar leader Hardik Patel, who is demanding reservation benefits for Patels in Gujarat, to explain to the people as to how could quota benefits be extended to the community in violation of Constitutional provisions and the Supreme Court judgement whereby a 50 per cent cap has been placed on reservation in government employment. “At present there is 49.5 per cent reservation to OBCs, SCs and STs in Gujarat”, he added.
Manjhi has been opposed to the demand for reservation by Patidars in Gujarat claiming that the community enjoyed the status of “zamindars” (land lords) in the western state.
Manjhi, who was accompanied by his party’s national general secretary Santosh Kumar Suman among others, also suggested that voters’ lists be linked to ‘Aadhaar’ in order to ensure fair and transparent elections. “It has been seen that one voter’s name is found in different electoral rolls…. this raises a question mark on the very process of fair and transparent elections”, he said. “If voters’ list is linked with ‘Aadhaar’, then names which appear in more than one list, will be struck off. This will ensure fair and transparent elections,” he added.