Rahul Gandhi says INDIA bloc will ‘throw out’ 50 percent cap on reservation after coming to power

He also alleged that the BJP tried to topple the JMM-Congress-RJD government in Jharkhand as the chief minister was a tribal.


Published Feb 05, 2024 | 6:09 PMUpdatedFeb 05, 2024 | 6:09 PM

Rahul Gandhi reservation

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Monday, 5 January, promised a nationwide caste census, besides the removal of the 50 percent cap on reservation if the Opposition INDIA bloc forms the government at the Centre after the Lok Sabha polls.

He alleged that the BJP tried to topple the JMM-Congress-RJD government in Jharkhand since the chief minister was a tribal.

“Want to congratulate all alliance MLAs, (Champai) Soren ji as that they stopped the BJP-RSS conspiracy and protected the government of the poor,” Gandhi said at a rally at the Shaheed Maidan in Ranchi.

Gandhi claimed that Dalits, tribals, and Other Backward Classes (OBCs) were made bonded labourers and their participation was lacking in big companies, hospitals, schools, colleges and courts.

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Advocates caste census

“This is the biggest question before India. Our first step would be to get a caste census in the country,” the former Congress chief said.

Noting that more than 50 percent reservation cannot be given under existing provisions, Gandhi promised that an Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) government would “throw out” the 50 percent cap on the reservation.

“There will be no reduction in the reservation of Dalits and Adivasis. I am giving you a guarantee that the backward sections of society will get their rights. This is the biggest issue —  social and economic injustice,” Gandhi said.

He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi used to say that he is an OBC but when the demand for a caste census was made, he stated that there are only two castes — the rich and the poor.

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Slams BJP, PM Modi

“When the time came to give rights to OBCs, Dalits, tribals, Modi ji says there are no castes and when it is time to get votes, he says he is an OBC,” Gandhi claimed.

Slamming the BJP soon after the Champai Soren-led government won the trust vote in the Jharkhand Assembly, Gandhi alleged that the BJP tried to remove the government as it could not accept that there was a tribal chief minister.

“The Congress, and the JMM stood against them together and the government was saved. They do this in all Opposition-ruled states through probe agencies and money power. They (BJP) are attacking democracy and the Constitution and want to suppress the voice of the people. The INDIA coalition will not let voice of democracy be suppressed,” the Congress leader asserted at the rally held during his Manipur-to-Maharashtra Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra.

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