To support or not support? BJP in a dilemma over quota bill

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New Delhi, Dec 19: The Lok Sabha is set to take up the constitutional amendment bill for reservation in promotions for the SCs and STs in government jobs. The bill, which is a dream project for Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati, has already been passed in the Rajya Sabha despite strong opposition from the Samajwadi Party (SP). The Lower House will also see fireworks for the SP is in no mood to give up and also the BJP is in two minds on the bill.

SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav said that his party would oppose the bill and if the UPA government was adamant in pushing it, then it might even reconsider its support. The BJP, too, was worried that not opposing the bill could put its upper caste votebank in danger. The Uttar Pradesh unit of the BJP has already passed a motion opposing the bill.

The saffron party witnessed serious differences within after it supported the bill in the Rajya Sabha. On Tuesday, the BJP's parliamentary party saw leaders like Murli Manohar Joshi questioning the party's stand on the controversial bill, saying it would only erode its support among the upper caste.

Both the national parties will be in a state of bother over the bill. It is to be seen who handles it better.

Lok Sabha adjourned

The Lok Sabha was adjourned till noon on Wednesday following uproar over a bill to provide reservation to SCs/STs in promotions in government jobs, which is listed for discussion and passage by the House.

As soon as Speaker Meira Kumar called for the Question Hour, SP members trooped into the Well raising slogans against the Constitution (117th Amendment) Bill. "Promotion main aarakshan, nahi chalega, nahi chalega (We do not want reservation in promotions)," the SP members shouted. To counter the SP onslaught, Congress members were in the aisles raising slogans in favour of the Bill and urging the Speaker to evict the SP members.

"Dalit Virodhiyon ko bahar karo (Evict those opposing Dalits)," the Congress members chanted. TDP and Shiv Sena members were in the Well raising slogans for increasing cotton prices to Rs 6,000 per quintal. They were waving placards for better prices for cotton.

The Speaker continued with the Question Hour for a while but as members were unrelenting, she adjourned the House till noon. The Constitution (117th Amendment) Bill which provides for quota for SCs and STs in government job promotions was passed by Rajya Sabha on Monday. The Bill is listed in the Lok Sabha for consideration and passing on Wednesday.

OneIndia News

(With PTI inputs)

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