Archbishop Anil Couto urges PM to introduce reservation for Christian Dalits

Archbishop Anil Joseph Thomas Couto, the Archbishop of Delhi, on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to introduce reservation for Christian Dalits, terming the denial of this privilege as 'unjust and discriminatory'.

ANI| Last Updated: Feb 17, 2015, 18:19 PM IST

New Delhi: Archbishop Anil Joseph Thomas Couto, the Archbishop of Delhi, on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to introduce reservation for Christian Dalits, terming the denial of this privilege as 'unjust and discriminatory'.

"I would like to make an appeal to the Prime Minister on behalf of Christians of Dalit origin, who have been denied the privilege of reservation in the public sector from 1950 with a Presidential order that has not been reversed despite of various appeals and protests," he said at a function organised to celebrate the canonization of Saint Euphrasia and Saint Chavara in New Delhi.

"This is a clear case of unjust and discrimination on basis of religion which cannot stand in a secular nation. We repose our faith in your government to make possible what looks impossible," he added.

Major Archbishop George Cardinal Alencherry also echoed his views.

"I would also like to appeal to you the request of Dalit Christians to have reservation together with their brother citizens in the other religions," he said.

Protest and campaigns were staged for SC/ST status for Dalit Christians, but government after government had failed to introduce reservation for the community.

According to reports, SC/ST organisations, time and again with the support of Hindutva organisations, have opposed any move to grant Dalit Christians the SC/ST status, on the plea that this would dilute the current quota for Hindu SC/STs in education and jobs.