West Bengal govt. considering reservation for Muslims

By TwoCircles.net staff reporter

Kolkata: Sensing ground slipping from beneath their feet, the Communist Party Marxist-led West Bengal government has started to woo Muslims. In its latest move, the government has indicated to consider reservation in employment for Muslims on the pattern of Andhra Pradesh.

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State Minister for Development and Minority Affairs, Dr. Abdus Sattar, says the government wants to follow Andhra Pradesh government in granting reservation to Muslims in employment. The government has already made contacts with Andhra Pradesh government to know the technicality and mechanism, he said. Under present reservation policy of West Bengal government, 64 Muslim backward castes have been identified for inclusion in 7% reservation in government employment to OBCs. Demands have been made to include Barber (Hajjam) caste too as government is considering inclusion of more backward castes. The government is believed to be considering giving more than 2.4% reservation to Muslims for which inclusion of 10 more Muslim castes is under consideration.

This latest reservation move is seen as an extension of the government’s efforts in the recent past to retain the support of the Muslim community. Recently, the government tried to gain Muslims’ confidence through Muslim leaders by organizing Minority Convention. The government also publicized their plan to appoint teachers at madrasas.