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Posted Online on Monday, 22 May 2006 23:30 IST

Muslim Islamic NewsGive Muslims' 8.5pc Share in 27pc OBC Reservations

By Dr MK Sherwani

The Milli Gazette Online

22 May 2006

The current phase of the reservations for OBCs which is most appropriately described as Mandal II, is not something, new but the extension of what had already been settled about the 27% reservations stipulated under Mandal Commission which were implemented by the then Prime Minister Mr. Vishwa Nath Pratap Singh. Despite all the ongoing turbulent phase against it, and all the debates , the government will not and must not roll back the announcement of reservations in the institutes of higher learning.

To those opposing this new ramification of reservation policy on the plea that it kills the meritocracy, the most appropriate response is that what happens to efficiency when totally inefficient but affluent candidates seek admissions on the basis of donation, while most efficient but poverty-ridden ones lag behind. The anti-reservationists at this stage need not waste their energy in opposing reservations because the backward castes are so politically unified and strong that no political party can afford to annoy them.

What is most urgent need of the moment is the concerted campaign by those castes covered by the Mandal Commission to transform this egalitarian ethos into a reality for all, and not let it remain confined to Ahir, Lodh and Kurmi.

Instead of indulging in the polemics of social philosophy etc. we the Muslims, as the constituent group of Indian polity must strive for and put the pressure on the government to earmark the proportionate share of 8.5 % for our backward castes who have so far remained a deprived lot. Muslim backward castes under the ambit of Mandal commission constitute 54% of the total backward castes, but are so weak that they are unable to compete with mighty Hindu backward castes. So for them the whole concept of social justice has proved a mirage.

Dr. Mustafa Kamal Sherwani formerly presided All India Muslim Forum, Lucknow


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