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The Congress was quick to welcome the Supreme Court’s order upholding the validity of 10 percent reservation for Economically Weaker Sections (EWS), excluding Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, and Other Backward Classes.
AICC communications chief Jairam Ramesh even insisted that the 103rd Amendment to the Constitution paving the way for EWS reservation was a result of initiatives by former prime minister Manmohan Singh.
The party’s eagerness to claim credit and wholeheartedly welcome the Supreme Court’s order has, however, put its state leaders in a fix.
While leaders like Jyotimani or Karti Chidambaram publicly took a contradictory stance, the plight of a few senior leaders is as if they are caught between the devil and the deep sea.
Take former Karnataka chief minister Siddaramaiah, for example.
With his re-attempt of AHINDA (Kannada acronym for minorities, backward classes and Dalits) social engineering formula in Karnataka, Siddaramaiah positioned himself as the leader of the backward classes in the state, but with his party rushing to back the SC order, he has landed in an awkward position over it.
“He wanted to criticise the EWS quota, but AICC president Mallikarjun Kharge welcomed it. After that, he didn’t have an option but to stay quiet,” an aide of Siddaramaiah told South First. The caution came especially given his not-so-great relationship with Kharge.