Reality Check India

Muslims have an unequal share: Manmohan

Posted in Uncategorized by realitycheck on December 28, 2006

Recently, there was a “Dalit-Minorities International Conference” in New Delhi organized by LJP leader Ram Vilas Paswan.

At the conference our PM said,

However, other minorities, especially the Muslim community in certain parts of our country, have not had an equal share of the fruits of development

Source : Indian Express

I think the PM has still not fired his speech writer – because this is another outrageous statement. If a group Gx wants an equal share in the fruits of development, it (Gx) must be able and willing to put in the effort that would result in that share. We can only create social justice policies that can ensure that all groups {Ga, Gb, …Gx} get to put in as much effort as they want in the development. We however cannot guarantee the fruits.

Having said that, “what is sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander”. If we can guarantee rich and privileged OBCs the fruits directly (read AIIMS, IIT, IIM seats) why not muslims ?

In other words,  we cannot really deny muslims what we allow dominant OBCs to have. There is simply no room for a rational discussion here. The only way this issue can be straightened out is by introducing caste-wise data into the picture and redrawing all the OBC lists.

Singh (VP Singh not PM Singh) for sub-quota

VP Singh has been pushing in the recent days for a subquota for Muslims within the overall 27%. This requires no constitutional amendments. This however requires the support of dominant OBC groups such as dravidian parties, as well as caste based politicians such as Laloo Yadav, Nitish Kumar, etc. As this blog has maintained from the beginning, at the root of all problems is the lack of social data. The initial selection of castes for OBCs as well as the continuation of OBC benefits to a caste must be based on current data.

The Muslim Dilemma

The Sachar report has brought out the fact that Muslims are lagging OBCs. However, the correct way to interpret it is the following. (Read “Sachar and the Muslim OBC” and “Perils of group quotas” )

  • (1) There is inconsistency in classification of muslims as OBCs. As an example elite Mapillah muslims of Kerala are OBC whereas almost no muslims from Bengal / Assam are OBC.
  • (2) Even in cases where Muslims are classified as OBC, they are overshadowed by powerful hindu OBC castes.

The correct way to cure (1) is to redraw the OBC lists to include new muslim castes into the OBC lists from WB and Assam and to exclude elite muslims who are not backward.

The correct way to cure (2) is to provide a sub-quota for muslim OBC castes within the overall 27% OBC quota.

So in effect the Sachar report is making a case for curing both (1) and (2). There is really nothing more to it.

The next question : What about the hundreds of fragmented hindu backward castes ? Can we have a Sachar report for them ?

2 Responses

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  1. Reason said, on December 29, 2006 at 4:30 am

    What about crores of poor among forward castes, including temple priests in tamil nadu on a few hundred rupees salary – can we have a Sachar report for them as well?

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