Ahmedabad: Dismissing Narendra Modi`s use of his caste card as a mere poll "gimmick", Gujarat Congress on Friday accused him, BJP and RSS of orchestrating protests against reservation for backward castes in the state.
"If he (Modi) belongs to the backward caste, why is he raising it just before the elections," GPCC president Arjun Modhwadia said and alleged he is doing it just to gain benefits in northern India.
"In 1985, when state CM Madhavsinh Solanki decided to implement 27 per cent reservation for 82 backward castes, a majority of BJP leaders protested the move and incited widespread violence across the state, which killed hundreds. At that time, Modi, who used to sit at Dr Hedgevar Bhavan, supervised the violence against Dalits" alleged Modhwadia at a press conference today.
"Now, to take votes of backward castes, he is boasting about his caste. But, there was a time when he tried hard to hide his caste. In 2002, when Rajkot-based Ghanchi community announced to extended support for Modi ahead of elections, BJP leaders tried hard to stop that news to appear in media," said Modhwadia, who also alleged that BJP toppled the VP Singh government on the issue of reservation.
"When VP Singh, who formed government with help of BJP, decided to implement reservation for all castes identified by Mandal Commission, BJP withdrew support and toppled the government. Thus, BJP and RSS are always anti-dalit and anti-backward castes," said Modhwadia.
He also questioned Modi for not implementing 14.5 per cent reservation for the Scheduled Tribes in Gujarat despite the Central government`s directive.
"Instead of 14.5 per cent, the state government is giving only 9.5 per cent reservation to tribals. And, as per their own affidavit one year
back, they are having no intention to change their policy," alleged Modhwadia.