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After Maratha reservation issue intensifies: AIMIM demands quota for Muslims

All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) MLAs Waris Pathan and Imtiyaz Jaleel urged the state government to provide 5 per cent reservation for the Muslims in the field  education. They held placards  outside Vidhan Bhavan in Nagpur to press for their demands. Mr. Waris Pathan said that the state government is not serious about providing reservation to Muslims. The erstwhile UPA government had formed the Sachar Committee to study about socio-economic conditions of Muslims in India.Today Muslims are lagging behind than other communities in education, employment and socio-economic status as per the report submitted by the committee.

Mr. Waris Pathan said, “Even though the erstwhile democratic front government had ruled the state for 15 years but they failed to provide reservation to Muslim community. The Congress-NCP only makes announcements about providing reservation to minorities but failed to implement them. They only raise this issue in the state assembly to garner political mileage out of it. Why did they not provide quotas to Muslims during their reign?”

“Even though the BJP is in power today but the party doesn’t want to provide reservation to Muslims. The saffron party had given come to power by saying that ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’. However, they have only filed affidavit with the high court pertaining to providing reservation to the Maratha community. Thus, injustice is being meted against the Muslim community. Is this an example of ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’?”

“The BJP-Sena government is specifically taking decisions that go against the Muslim community. We are not asking for any religion-based reservation but our demand is a socio-economic one. Articles 15 and 16 of the Constitution provides for this right?, he added.

Imtiaz Jaleel, AIMIM MLA from Aurangabad said, “Muslims are not opposing the government’s decision to provide reservation to Marathas. When leaders are discussing about providing reservation to Maratha community then they should also speak about Muslim quota too. The reservation should be granted to Muslim within the provisions of the Indian constitution. We will hold meetings with Muslim organisations to put forward our demand before the government for providing reservation to Muslims.”

Last year the Maharashtra government had revoked the five per cent reservation for Muslims in educational institutes. The Bharatiya Janata Party-Shiv Sena had taken this decision to please the Hindu right wing organisations. Even the Congress and NCP had criticised the BJP-Sena government of implementing “anti-minority policies to appease the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).

The government had approved a Bill to bypass the high court order and allowed 16 per cent reservation for Marathas for education and jobs. On the other hand, the government failed to pass a similar bill for Muslims and allowed the previous ordinance to lapse which invited the ire of Muslims and opposition parties.

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