New Delhi: With all parties trying to woo
Muslim voters, Congress has pulled out all stops to attract
them in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh by promising reservation
to backward minorities commensurate with their population.
The assurance means that the party was ready to give 9
per cent reservation to backward minorities, with Muslims
constituting 18 per cent of the 20 crore population of the
politically crucial state.
The party`s poll manifesto released from Uttar Pradesh
today lists a number of ambitious promises for the community
along with its commitment to "pursue equitable solution to
the Babri Masjid dispute".
Emphasising that it will ensure full and timely
implementation of the central government`s decision on 4.5
reservation for socially and economically backward minorities
under OBC category, the manifesto also expresses party`s
intent to provide an increased percent of reservation for
backward minorities in state jobs and admissions in Uttar
Pradesh if it came to power there.
Though the manifesto does not mention the figure of nine
per cent reservation, which had led to a political
controversy, it notes the party aims towards a
"subquota/reservation for socially and economically backward
minorities in UP in state government employment and
educational institutions, "commensurate with their
Inspite of objections by the Election Commission, the
AICC had stood by Union Minister Salman Khurshid`s promise of
a 9 percent sub quota to backward minorities in state
government jobs and admission to educational institutions.
Samajwadi Party, BSP and even smaller parties like Peace
Party and Ulema Council are engaged in oneupmanship in this
virtually no-holds-barred battle for the Muslim votes.