10% quota for poor among upper castes: Who said what

(Left to right)Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi, AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi and Patidar Anamat Andolan Samiti's leader Hardik Patel. Photograph:( WION Web Team )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jan 07, 2019, 05.04 PM (IST)

In a significant decision ahead of Lok Sabha polls the Narendra Modi cabinet on Monday has approved a 10% quota for the upper castes.

The decision has received a mixed response from common people but has invoked strong reactions from opposition parties.

Within minutes of the Union Cabinet's decision, the Congress has raised questions over the move terming it as a poll gimmick.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi said the government did not think about this for four years and eight months and brought this just months before the model code of conduct coming into effect.

He also asked whether the government has the majority to bring about a Constitution amendment in Parliament.

"Why did you not think of this for four years and eight months? So obviously thought of as election gimmick three months before the model code. You know that you cannot exceed 50 per cent maxima so it is done only to posture that you tried," he said in a tweet.

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Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal challenged the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government to get the Constitutional amendments passed before the elections this summer. “If they do so, the Aam Aadmi Party will support the government, else it will be clear it is just an election gimmick,” Kejriwal tweeted. 

Meanwhile, ruling party BJP has welcomed the decision.

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"Reservations are meant to correct historical injustice to Dalits. For poverty alleviation, one may run various schemes but reservations are meant for justice. Constitution doesn't permit reservations on economic grounds," says Asaduddin Owaisi. 

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Former Minister of Finance Yashwant Sinha has termed this decision as nothing more than a jumla.

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"Is it like all the previous 'jumlas'? There are just two days left for the Winter Session of Parliament to over and now they are coming with a bill… it is possible that this is just another lollipop from this government. They just want to attract upper caste votes and people who had diverted towards the Congress in the recent elections. I can say that it is just a jumla before the Lok Sabha elections," says Patidar leader Hardik Patel.