Political parties exploiting SC/ST reservation issue: Kejriwal



New Delhi: Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party on Sunday criticised political parties for exploiting the issue of reservation in promotions in government jobs and putting their partisan interests above national interests.

"Instead of taking a principled stand on this question, the Congress has dithered and allowed itself to be blackmailed while the BJP has maintained a strategic silence. Parties like the BSP and the SP have merely acted as pressure groups on behalf of one caste group or another," AAP spokesperson Manish Sisodia said in a statement.

This is one more instance of how political establishment puts its partisan interests above national interests, he added.

AAP takes exception to the cynical manner in which the issue of reservation in promotions in government jobs is being exploited by various political parties to pit one section of society against another, Sisodia said.

The party said the basic rationale of the reservation system was to extend genuine equality of opportunity to those sections of society that have suffered systematic deprivation, discrimination and disadvantage and are therefore under- represented at the top echelons of society.

"This can be extended to promotions as and where there is evidence of systematic discrimination in promotions that do not follow seniority rule. Otherwise, there is no need for reservations in promotion," Sisodia said.

He said mechanical use of reservations in promotion often creates an anomalous situation. Those who are recruited against reserved category tend to get faster promotion than the rest and become senior to their batch-mates from the General category for no special reason.

"This creates unnecessary heartburn and a sense of injustice, which is not in keeping with the spirit of the system of reservations. That is why the Supreme Court has, while upholding job reservations for the SC, ST and the OBCs, rejected the idea of mechanical reservations in promotions," he said.

PTI