Bengaluru: Two days after the BJP government in Karnataka scrapped four per cent OBC reservation for Muslims, Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Sunday defended the move, saying there is no provision in the Constitution to provide reservations on the basis of religion.
Addressing a rally in poll-bound Karnataka’s Bidar, he slammed the Congress for providing reservation on the basis of religion in the state.
Shah said that the reservation for Muslims introduced by the previous Congress-led government in the state was not as per Constitution.
In its last Cabinet meeting before the polls, the Basavaraj Bommai government on Friday scrapped the four per cent OBC reservation for Muslims and distributed it to two dominant communities - Veerashaiva-Lingayats and Vokkaligas.
The Cabinet decided to move OBC Muslims to the 10 per cent Economically Weaker Section (EWS) category.
Shah said the Congress provided reservation to the minority as part of its polarisation politics. “The BJP scrapped that reservation and provided reservations to Vokkaliga and Lingayat communities,” he added.
He also inaugurated the ‘Garota Shaheed Smarak’ and a memorial of Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel during his visit to Karnataka on Sunday. The 20-ft tall statue of Sardar Patel is a symbol of his significant role played by the country’s first Home Minister, he said.
He also highlighted the sacrifice of people in Gorata village who were allegedly killed by Razakars of Nizam, the ruler of Hyderabad State, for hosting a 2.5-ft tall tricolor. Shah said now, a 103-ft tall tricolour has been hoisted on the same land.
The Union Home Minister also targeted Congress party what he calls vote bank politics. He alleged that the party never commemorated the martyrs of independence and Hyderabad liberation.
“Due to Congress’s politics of polarisation and their greed for vote bank, they never commemorated the people who sacrificed themselves for independence and Hyderabad mukti,” he said.