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JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav makes pitch for caste-based census

Giving a strong call for conducting a caste-based census, JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav on Saturday said that while undertaking the exercise, representatives of all the castes should be taken into account.



New Delhi: Giving a strong call for
conducting a caste-based census, JD(U) chief Sharad Yadav
on Saturday said that while undertaking the exercise,
representatives of all the castes should be taken into
account.
"We welcome Madras High Court`s decision directing the
government to conduct caste-based census. The court`s verdict
is in concurrence with the consensus reached on the issue in
Parliament. I now appeal and expect that each and every caste
in India would be counted, so that we can know after 63 years
of Independence, which social group stays where in society,"
Yadav said while speaking to reporters here.

The JD(U) chief said that though census exercises in
the past have been taking religion into account, inclusion of
castes was not considered at any time.

"India was divided because of religion, not because of
caste, but religion census continued, so religion was the
culprit while caste was punished. If you are interested in
knowing the figures related to religions, which proved to be
divisive, why are you not interested in knowing the figures of
caste?" Yadav sought to know.
He added that "till all these years, the government
avoided caste-based census. Now it should not be afraid of
doing this. I think they fear the fact that once this is done,
then the exact picture about the actual status of various
castes will emerge. Caste system is a bitter reality of our
society, but we cannot get rid of it by ignoring it".

Yadav further said that "once the exact numbers under
each and every caste are determined, then the government
should undertake a discussion with all parties on how to
abolish the caste system from the country".

He said that in a country where 90 per cent people
belonging to all castes still live hand to mouth, it is
important to undertake caste-based census to get a clear
picture of their status.

"Several of our great personalities like Guru Nanak,
Guru Govind Singh, Kabir Das, Mahatma Phule and Mahatma
Gandhi, were against the caste system, therefore after
discussions with all parties, a viable option should be
explored for abolishing it, once the caste-based census is
complete," Yadav said.

The JD(U) chief advocated the study of the Lingayat
sect of Karnataka, which came into existence only after
fighting against the caste system.

The former union minister said that "despite the
government giving reservation to SCs, STs and OBCs since 1993,
the representation of OBCs in Central gazetted jobs has not
exceeded five per cent and this is based on a report by the
Department of Personnel and Training."

Caste-based census, he said, would help in
rationalising such anomalies.

PTI

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