Amit Shah defends scrapping 4 per cent reservation for Muslims in Karnataka
Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Tuesday defended the BJP government’s decision to scrap the 4 per cent reservation for Muslims in Karnataka, saying the party never believed in ‘religion-based reservations’.
The former BJP leader also took a jibe at the Congress’s stance that quota would be withdrawn if it comes to power in the state after the May 10 assembly polls.
“There was four per cent reservation for Muslims based on religion. Instead of succumbing to vote bank politics, the BJP government scrapped the Muslim reservation,” he said while addressing a public meeting in the constituency.
Shah opined that we believe that reservation based on religion should not happen.
After scrapping the Muslim reservation, the BJP government increased the reservation for Scheduled Castes, Tribes, Vokkaligas and Lingayats, the minister added.
Referring to the Basavaraj puppet government’s decision to increase SC reservation from 15 per cent to 17 per cent, Shah said internal reservation for SC (left) is now six per cent, SC (right) – 5.5 per cent and other SCs 5.5 per cent.
Responding to Congress leader DK Shivakumar’s promise to restore Muslim reservation if his party comes to power, Shah sought to know whose reservation the party would remove if it were to form the government in Karnataka.
“Whose reservation will be reduced if the four percent reservation for Muslims is withdrawn? Is it Vokkalika or Lingayat, Dalits, Scheduled Tribes or Other Backward Castes?” asked the minister.
Near the end of its tenure, the BJP government decided to scrap the four percent reservation for Muslims under Section 2-B. Four per cent was then divided into two and distributed to Vokkalikas in 2-C and Lingayats in 2-D.
Vokkaligas and Lingayats are the two main dominant communities of Karnataka.