Quota measure also for a fair deal to Muslims: Cong

AICC dismissed charges that the government was blackmailing SP chief Mulayam Singh

New Delhi: Seeking to take the sting out of SP`s counter to SC/ST quota in promotion bill, Congress on Monday said it was also for a fair deal to Muslims but the issue was "not contrary or contradictory" to the proposed measure.

AICC also dismissed charges that the government was blackmailing SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav.

Yadav to ensure his party`s support on ticklish issues like FDI in retail.

Party spokesman PC Chacko told reporters here that Congress was committed to the Constitution Amendment Bill providing for promotion to SCs and STs in government jobs.

At the same time, he said that Congress was also committed to the Sachar Committee report which went into the status of Muslims. "These two things are not contrary or contradictory," he said.

"SP and BSP have their own opinion. There is no question of anyone influencing right or wrong. There is no proof of that", he said, wondering how could leaders of national stature like Mulayam Singh be afraid of CBI.

Chacko suggested that it has become a fashion that political parties when in opposition take a convenient dig at CBI forgetting that they had at one time complimented it. CBI is made a "scapegoat" by them for political purpose, he said.

The remarks of Chacko came close on the heels of Yadav pitching for reservation for Muslims after his party got isolated in its opposition to quota bill.

Yadav had his comments as his party in Rajya Sabha today demanded proportionate reservation for Muslims through a constitutional amendment in an apparent move to counter the push for quota in promotion for SCs/STs.