Sumitra's 'reservations' on quota may stir controversy

Sumitra's 'reservations' on quota may stir controversy

Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan conducts House proceedings, in New Delhi. (PTI File Photo/TV Grab)

In what may snowball into a major controversy, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan has questioned the rationale behind extending reservation benefits for an indefinite period.

“Baba Saheb Ambedkar himself said reservation was required for 10 years to bring around a social change in society. He visualised equal development within 10 years. But that did not happen. So what are we doing now? We are extending reservations every 10 years. At one point in time, it was extended for 20 years. But has reservation brought welfare to the country?” Sumitra asked.

However, Sumitra, who was speaking at Ranchi while participating in ‘Lok Manthan’ programme in Jharkhand on Sunday, clarified that she was personally not against reservation but it was high time to deliberate on the issue.

Without taking any names, Sumitra also took a dig at those who benefited from reservation but did precious little for their community.

“Those who have achieved something in life (after availing benefits of quota) should also introspect what they have done for the upliftment of their communities and society,” the Speaker argued, adding that this was her “personal opinion”.

She also stressed on the need to develop a patriotic feeling. “So long as we do not strengthen the spirit of patriotic feeling towards our country, overall development of the country is not possible,” she added.