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Rajasthan assembly passes Gujjar quota bill
July 17, 2008 01:51 IST
The Rajasthan assembly on Wednesday passed by voice vote the bill providing five per cent quota to Gujjars and three other castes under the 'special backward class' and 14 per cent quota to the poor among the 'economically backwards'.
Despite the opposition, the Congress party supported the bill. Some of the party's MLAs including C P Joshi, Jagannath Paharia and Harimohan Sharma termed it as a bill in haste and under the pressure of the Gujjar community's agitation, which claimed about 70 lives in 2007-2008.
After the bill was passed unanimously, the House made a consensus resolution that the Central government should include the very bill in the 9th Schedule of the Constitution so that it could not be challenged anywhere in the court.
State Law Minister G S Twari said the bill aimed to provide reservation of seats in educational institutions in the state and appointments and posts in the services under the state in favour of the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Backward Classes, and Economically Backward Classes and for the matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
"The total reservation percentage would not go beyond 68 per cent," he said.
The provisions of this bill shall be in addition to and not in derogation of the provisions contained in any other act, Tiwari said.
Without disturbing the quota percentage of SC: 16 per cent, ST: 12 per cent and OBC: 21 per cent, the bill extends quota benefit of 5 per cent to four castes -- Gujjars, Banjara, Gadia Lohars, and Raika, and 14 per cent to EBCs including Brahmins, Rajput, Vaishya, Mathur etc.
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