We erred in opposing quota for upper castes: RJD

The U-turn by RJD on 10 per cent reservation for forwards (as upper castes are known here) is seen as an afterthought by Lalu’s outfit after it found itself marginalised within the Mahagatbandhan. While all the constituents of the NDA had welcomed the move, those in the Grand Alliance too, including the Congress, HAM and RLSP, had hailed the Centre’s proposal. (File photo)

In a significant development, which may have wide political ramifications in caste-ridden Bihar, the RJD has expressed regret for opposing the 10 per cent quota for upper castes during the debate in the Parliament.

“I have spoken to Laluji in Ranchi. He said the RJD had never been opposed to additional quota for economically weaker sections among the upper caste. The party was, therefore, not satisfied with the speech delivered by RJD Rajya Sabha member Manoj Jha in the Upper House,” said RJD Vice-President Raghuvansh Prasad Singh.

The U-turn by the RJD on 10 per cent reservation for forwards (as upper castes are known) is seen as an afterthought by Lalu Prasad Yadav’s outfit after it found itself marginalised within the Mahagatbandhan. While all the constituents of the NDA had welcomed the move, those in the Grand Alliance too, including the Congress, the HAM and the RLSP, had hailed the Centre’s proposal.

“The Centre brought the legislation in such a tearing hurry that the RJD could not hold deliberations properly. We in the RJD, had, in fact, said in our manifesto that there should be reservation for the economically weaker sections among the upper castes,” said Singh, an influential Rajput leader from Vaishali, who served in Manmohan Singh Cabinet as Rural Development Minister in UPA-1.

“It’s too late. Now you have missed the bus,” said Pashupati Kumar Paras, younger brother of Ram Vilas Paswan and a minister in the Nitish Cabinet, while making a jibe at the RJD.

The JD(U) took potshots at the RJD for its changing stance. “If the RJD is really in favour of the quota for upper castes, then it should take action against its two MPs who opposed the legislation in Parliament,” said JD(U) spokesperson Neeraj Kumar.

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We erred in opposing quota for upper castes: RJD

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