Quota Bill 2019: Which political parties are for it, who's against it, who finds it funny?

The newly proposed reservation will be over and above the existing 50 per cent reservation for SC, ST and OBCs. With this, reservation in government jobs will stand at 60 per cent
The Union cabinet on Monday cleared a 10 per cent reservation in government jobs for 'economically weaker' sections (Pic: PTI)
The Union cabinet on Monday cleared a 10 per cent reservation in government jobs for 'economically weaker' sections (Pic: PTI)

The Union cabinet on Monday cleared a 10 per cent reservation in government jobs for 'economically weaker' sections, which is primarily those from upper castes. The Quota Bill, passed by the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, is currently facing the Rajya Sabha test on January 9. While a lot of political parties have extended support to the bill, many in the opposition called the move an election gimmick done keeping in mind the 2019 Lok Sabha elections — and the balance that it hangs in.

Which side of the line are India's biggest political parties standing on? Take a look:

Parties that have supported the extra 10% 'poor upper caste' reservation 

Bharatiya Janata Party: "I congratulate the Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his entire cabinet for this legitimate decision, which was pending for decades," he said in a tweet in Hindi. The decision to give 10 per cent reservation to poor youths from general category will open a door for their golden future," BJP President Amit Shah said in a statement.

Communist of Party of India (Marxist): Kerala CM Pinarayi Vijayan came out in support of the move, but did term it an election gimmick all the same. “The central government has taken the decision keeping in mind the Lok Sabha elections. The CPI(M) has earlier itself wanted reservation for the economically weaker people among higher castes. It has been done in the Travancore Devaswom Board, which manages various shrines, including the Sabarimala temple,” he said.

Lok Janshakti Party: Drawing the history of commissions formed for reservation for SC/ST and backward castes for their social and educational upliftment, LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan praised Ambedkar, Vivekanand and other social reformers. He said that only the issue of reservation to upper caste economically weak section was pending which this bill seeks to sort out.

Shiv Sena: Anandrao Adsul, MP, threw light on the problems raised after the introduction of GST and said that the problems should be sorted. The quota bill will help the economically backward, he says.

Parties that have condemned the extra 10% 'poor upper caste' reservation 

Trinamool Congress: Sudip Bandyopadhyay of TMC asked why the Government does not take up the Women's Reservation Bill with the same priority as this Quota Bill? This bill is not only about jobs but also about misleading the youth with false hopes and fake dreams, he said.

Indian National Congress: Congress MP in Kerala KV Thomas says the Bill was moved in haste, less than a day after the Union Cabinet took the decision and that any hasty decision was bound to end in a mess. “We are not against this, but the way it is being brought raises questions on your sincerity. My request is to send this to JPC first,” said Thomas.

Bahujan Samaj Party: BSF Chief Mayawati opposed the bill and said it's a stunt by the Modi Government before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. She added that it would have been better if the BJP had come up with this bill earlier and not immediately before the end of their term.

All Indian Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam: Had PM Narendra Modi delivered Rs. 15 lakh to each Indian as promised, none of this would have been required, said senior leader of AIADMK, M Thambi Durai, referring to a pre-election promise that is regularly raised by the Congress and other opposition parties. "PM Modi promised Rs. 15 lakh in each account. Had he implemented it, there would be no need for this Bill," Thambi Durai said. Raising questions on the process of implementation of the bill, he added that new law will only increase corruption. "People may pay a bribe and get a certificate that he/she is poor," he added. 

Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam: DMK president and opposition leader MK Stalin alleged that the move to provide quota was done keeping an eye on the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. "The quota will not stand legal scrutiny as the Constitution clearly says that reservation should be based on social backwardness. The central government has started a disastrous game by introducing this bill. It is not in tune with Constitutional provisions on reservation," he said.

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