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Quota: PM constitutes coordination committee
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October 16, 2006 22:06 IST

Turning pro-active on the issue of private sector job reservation, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has constituted a coordination committee of officials to go into the issue of affirmative action by business and industry in providing jobs for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

The move by the prime minister has come at a time when several chambers of commerce have made it known that they were for affirmative action like providing training to youth from the weaker sections, but had expressed reservations against government bringing a legislation.

While a group of ministers led by Sharad Pawar had gone into the issue and had recommended that the entire United Progressive Alliance leadership should collectively take a decision in the crucial matter, Social Empowerment Minister Meira Kumar had threatened a legislation if the private sector failed to act fast and showed an indifferent attitude.

"With a view to taking the process forward by ensuring a national dialogue leading to a time-bound action programme, the prime minister is constituting a coordination committee," PM's Media Adviser Sanjay Baru said in a statement.

The government had initiated wide-ranging consultations with a view to exploring the best way to see that the private sector fulfills the aspirations of SC and ST youth, Baru said adding, a number of useful suggestions had been put forward by different groups.

The five-member committee, headed by principal secretary to the PM, will comprise secretaries of Social Justice and Empowerment, Department of Personnel and Training, Tribal Affairs and Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion.

The chairman may suitably coopt other members, official as well as unofficial, if considered necessary, Baru said.

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