Half-clad students staged a protest outside Union Coal Minister Sriprakash Jaiswal’s residence here on Saturday to express their ire over the Central government’s plan to provide reservation in promotions for SC/ST government employees.
The students,who put forward their views before Jaiswal,argued that they were not against reservation,but felt that reservations should be given on the basis of economic status and not their caste.
“Our protest is not exactly against reservation,but we believe that it should not be done only on the basis of caste. If you say that the SC people have a very low status,then we want to say that SC,OBC are all included in it,” said Vivek,one of the student protesters.
“There should be reservation on the basis of level of poverty. The minister (Jaiswal) assured us that no wrong would happen to any of us,” he added.
The proposed Bill approved by the Union Cabinet on Tuesday seeks to provide a reserved jobs quota for Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs),and seeks to amend at least four articles of the Constitution to enable the government to provide a quota in promotions to SC/STs.
It seeks to remove the term inadequate representation,mentioned in Article 16(4) to justify reservation in promotion and appointments,and also delink the term efficiency of administration from the claims of SCs/STs for jobs and promotions,mentioned in Article 335.
Changes are also proposed to be made in articles 341 and 342 of the Constitution,following the advice of the government’s top law officer,Attorney General,G.E. Vahanvati,on the issue.