New Delhi, Apr 19: Supporting the Prime Minister's suggestion for job reservations for the underprivilaged in the private sector, the Left parties today demanded legislation to this effect while observing that industry would continue to reject the proposal.
"Mere appeal to the industry will not serve the purpose as they continue to harp on merit and efficiency," the CPI(M),CPI and Forward Bloc told UNI adding that only the enactment of the law would ensure reservation in the corporate sector.
Dr Manmohan Singh at the CII annual Session on Tuesday once again broached the subject of job quotas for the socially underprvilaged in the private sector, while talking about the opening up the labour market, undertaking labour reforms and going ahead with the job reservations.
But CII former president Rahul Bajaj alongwith other captains of industry threatened to go to court if the government legislated it.
CPI(M) senior leader and polit bureau member M K Pandhe made it clear," unless there is a law, job reservations will not be implemented." Referring to his discussions with the corporate magnates in a meeting with the Planning Commission,the CPI(M) stalwart said they stood for their old argument in favour of efficiency and merit.
Mr Pandhe pleaded that this is why the Left advocated the enactment of law. Only then the constituional bodies like the SC/ST Commission and the Minority Commission could oversee the status of job reservations in the private sector and ensure its implementation.
CPI General Secretary A B Bardhan said the Cabinet should discuss the crucial issue without further delay and get the new law passed in the Parliament. Mr Bardhan's comment assumes special significance in the wake of the recommendation by the Empowered Group of Ministers, headed by Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar, that job reservation in the private sector could be possible by amending the Constitution and bringing in a new law, an issue that the Cabinet should decide.
CPI National Secretary D Raja, referring to the commitment to the effect in the CMP, said even though it was' too late," yet the time had come for implementing the promise." Mr Raja also demanded that the government make public the recommendation of the EGM.
"The Government will have to take urgent steps to ensure policy of reservation in the private sector." Forward Bloc national Secretary G Devrajan said the job reservation in the private sector was necessary all the more because job opportunities were hardly there in the government sector.