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Rajya Sabha session extended till Wednesday for reservation bill

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New Delhi, Jan 7: The ongoing winter session of the Rajya Sabha has been extended by a day till Wednesday as the Centre hopes to push through a Constitutional amendment bill that will introduce a 10 per cent quota for economically weaker sections under the general category.

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In a landmark move ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, the Union cabinet has approved a ten per cent reservation in jobs and higher education for "economically backward" sections in the general category.A constitutional amendment bill will be tabled in Parliament Tuesday, the last day of the Winter Session.

10% quota for upper caste poor: 'Historic,' says BJP; 'election gimmick,' counters Congress

The proposed reservation will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation enjoyed by the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and the Other Backward Classes, taking the total reservation to 60 per cent.

The reservation will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation and the government will amend Articles 15 and 16 - which are on discrimination and equal opportunity - of the Constitution to implement it, PTI reported.

A Union minister said the bill once passed will amend the Constitution accordingly to give reservation to the poor among the general castes and classes.

The constitutional amendment bill would be required as the constitution does not provide for reservation on the ground of economic conditions.

Among the major castes to benefit from the proposed law are Brahmins, Rajputs (Thakurs), Jats, Marathas, Bhumihars, several trading castes, Kapus and Kammas among other upper castes. It would also benefit the poor in other religions.

Quota for poor among upper caste: Are you eligible? Check here

The move is being seen as a step to consolidate upper caste votes just ahead of the general elections. Most Opposition parties called it an election gimmick but are not likely to oppose it.

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