The Maharashtra BJP's OBC cell on Wednesday asked the Shiv Sena-led MVA government to make public how much data on other backward classes has been collected so far and claimed the Shivraj Singh Chouhan administration in Madhya Pradesh has already put together empirical figures to provide political reservation to the social group in local bodies.
The Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government is delaying the OBC data collection exercise (to establish the extent of backwardness) and denying other backward classes reservation in local governing bodies in the state, it said.
The political quota issue has once again come into limelight after the Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the State Election Commission (SEC) to notify local body polls in Madhya Pradesh within two weeks without the other backward classes (OBC) reservation.
Speaking to reporters here, Yogesh Tilekar, the state OBC Morcha head of the BJP said, "The MVA government is trying to portray that the BJP government in Madhya Pradesh has done nothing to collect OBC data. The MP government did collect empirical data required for OBC reservation for local body elections, but it lost the case in the Supreme Court on some technical grounds."
However, the Maharashtra government should make public how much data on OBCs has been gathered in the state since December 2019, he said. "The MVA government is delaying the (data collection) process and denying the right of OBCs to avail reservation in local governing bodies," Tilekar claimed. Tilekar's statements came after several Maharashtra ministers criticized the BJP over the Madhya Pradesh government losing the legal case for OBC quota in local bodies.
After the SC verdict, Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said his government will file a review petition and push for holding local body elections with the OBC reservation.The apex court, in its verdict, said until the triple test exercise, which was mentioned in a Constitution bench verdict of 2010, is completed in all respect, no reservation for the OBCs can be provisioned.
The triple condition included setting up a dedicated commission to conduct a rigorous empirical inquiry into the nature and implications of backwardness local body-wise within a state before provisioning reservation for the OBC category.
(With PTI inputs)