EWS Reservation Debate LIVE: Owaisi Lambasts Govt's Quota Bill, Calls it Fraud on Constitution
Union social justice minister Thawar Chand Gehlot said that all those outside of the purview of the reservation system till now, will be able to avail benefit of the 'EWS' quota irrespective of their faith, and claimed that the introduction of this bill was proof that the Narendra Modi government was committed to its 'Sabka saath, sabka vikas' motto, as was espoused by Narendra Modi before the 2014 elections.
Finance minister Arun Jaitley, building the case for the 10 per cent quota, said, “If two individuals are not equal due to birth or for economic reasons, then they cannot be treated equally. Unequals cannot be treated equally,” he said. He further contended that the 50% cap on reservations imposed by the Supreme Court was only in relation to Article 16 (4), for caste-based reservations, and the EWS reservation won’t be impacted by it.
Earlier, the Lok Sabha passed the controversial Citizenship Amendment Bill after a marathon debate that lasted close to three hours and saw the Congress and the TMC walk out in protest. It seeks to provide Indian citizenship to non-Muslims from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan. Speaking on the bill, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said it will pave way for the religious minorities - the Hindus, Jains, Christians, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsis - from these states to get Indian citizenship.
Introduction of the bill was vehemently objected to by the opposition. The Congress said many states have opposed the bill and it should be sent to a select committee. With Speaker Sumitra Mahajan not heeding to the demand, the Congress staged a walkout. TMC's Saugata Roy dubbed the bill as "divisive" and "insidious" and said it goes against the basic tenets of the constitution.
The legislation has resulted in protests, primarily in Assam and several parts of north-east India. BJP's ally in the state, the Asom Gano Parishad has withdrawn support from the state government over the issue, whereas the Shiv Sena and the NDA too have opposed the legislation. Seeking to assuage concerns, the Home Minister said: "The burden of illegal immigrants will not borne by Assam, it will be shared by different states".