Gujjar-Meena again gearing up to lock horns over ST status issue

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Jaipur, Oct 2 (UNI) Two prominent marshal communities of Rajasthan --Gujjars and Meena--are again positioning themselves against each other to defend their respective community interests in the wake of the former's demand of Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

While the Gujjar Reservation Action Committee has launched second phase of its state wide agitation from today courting arrests to press for the demand, the Meena community leaders hosted Akhil Bharatiya Adivasi Vikas Parishad's national convention in Jaipur to garner countrywide tribal communities' support for countering the Gujjars' move with a massive naional national movement.

The check and mate between the two communities has already begun.

The delegates in the two day Adivasi (tribals) meet which concluded here today, were making strong worded speeches to oppose Gujjars' demand when large number of Gujjars were assembling at different points in various district to court arrest.

Cutting accross party lines a large number of Gujjars, including top leaders--action committee Convenor Col Kirodi Singh Bainsla, Sitting Congress MP Sachin Pilot, sitting MLAs Attar Singh Bhadana and Prahlad Gunjal(rebel BJP), Nathu Singh Gurjar and Hargyan Singh Gurjar(BJP), Govind Singh Gurjar(Congress) and Ranbir Singh Guda(LJP) courted arrests in different districts.

On the other hand several leaders including four Union Ministers PR Kyndiah, Kanti Bhai Bhuria, Manikrao Gavit and Namo Narain Meena and over a dozen of sitting Rajasthan MLAs including two Ministers Kirodi Lal Meena and Kanak Mal Katara were prominent participants in the two day tribal meet which formally resolved to oppose effectively the Gujjar's demand.

Union Ministers Bhuria, Mr Gavit and Mr Meena made strong plea in their speeches for building national movement against inclusion or amendment in the ST list.

Rajasthan's Food and Civil Supply Minister Kirodi Lal Meena was more aggressive in his speech and announced that all the 31 members of Rajasthan Legislative Assembly from ST communities would quit their membership if it was needed to uphold the community's cause.

Congress leader and former Minister Ramswaroop Meena even demanded disbanding of the Chopra Committee constituted by the Rajasthan Government for examining the Gujjars' demand.

UNI

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