NEW DELHI: After Maharashtra’s Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government said it plans to bring in a law to provide five per cent reservation to backward Muslims in government educational institutions, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad has hit out at the alliance government calling it “Minority appeasement”.
VHP’s Secretary General Milind Parande said, “I have read the newspaper reports that Shiv Sena-led Maharashtra government has given five per cent reservation to Muslims in educational institutions. However, many have denied such reports. But these kinds of news are worrisome.”
He added, “Such efforts by the Maharashtra government to walk towards minority appeasement… The Hindu community expects from this government that they won’t indulge in such efforts.”
This comment of the VHP came a day after Maharashtra Minority Affairs Minister Nawab Malik made public claims to that effect. He informed the Legislative Council that the state government will introduce legislation to the effect soon in the matter which has been pending since long.
The decision is in tune with the common minimum programme of the ruling Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress government and will be implemented after taking legal opinion in the matter, say sources.
Earlier this month, Congress-NCP leaders had said that they would explore legal options to provide job quota for the backward Muslims in the state.
It was in mid-2014 that the then Congress-Nationalist Congress Party government announced 16 per cent reservations to Marathas and five per cent to Muslims in government educational institutions and jobs to the two communities which comprise 32 percent and 11 percent, respectively, of the state’s 11 crore population.
The move was strongly criticised by then opposition Bharatiya Janata Party. Later, after the BJP-Shiv Sena alliance with Devendra Fadnavis as Chief Minister took office in late 2014, the matter was put into cold storage.