Kharge urge State/Centre for 18% quota in Jobs for SC/STs

Bangalore (SBC):  Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge on Monday said reservation in government jobs for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes is not commensurate with their population.

He appealed to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to set it right on priority basis. At a convention of the KPCC’s SC/ST wing here, he said at present, reservation in government jobs for SC/STs is 15 per cent.

The government should fill all backlog for SC/STs and ensure 18 per cent reservation in state government jobs, he said.

Such neglect is also there in the Union government. There are 16 railway zones, 5 production plants and 63 Divisional Railway Managers, but not even a single person from SC/ST community is heading any one of these.

Of the 20 Principal Secretaries to various departments at the Centre, there is none from the reserved category, he regretted.

He said compared to other states, the situation is somewhat better in Karnataka. The SC/ST community stood behind the Congress solidly right from the days of Independence. He said the downtrodden should remain united to assert their rights.

He said partymen should first be proud of being Congressmen rather than identifying with caste or community. AICC general secretary and party in-charge of Karnataka Digvijay Singh promised that the state government would take all steps to address issues of the SC/STs on priority basis.

He urged the Chief Minister to constitute a Cabinet sub-committee to look into the problems being faced by the SC/STs. Singh said the Congress owes largely to the downtrodden for their continued support.

He also urged SC/ST communities to increase the talent and the skill-sets to keep themselves abreast of the innovations and technological advancements.  He pointed out the fact that SC/STs despite being given a lot of facilities by the Centre and State governments are failing to fall in the talent pool in commensurate with the population.  It is time to aggressively focus in such technologically advanced areas and urged upon the community to work hard in nurturing the skill-sets that which will ultimately empower the community at large in the prevailing global competition. “This is very much a necessity now”, he added.

He lauded the state government’s decision of waiving all outstanding loans availed from various state-owned corporations by SC/STs and minorities.

AICC SC/ST wing national president Raju, Union Minister of State for MSMEs K H Muniyappa, Revenue Minister V Srinivas Prasad, PWD Minister H C Mahadevappa and Social Welfare Minister H Anjaneya also spoke.