Lucknow, Jan 14 The fight for the BJP will get a “little tough” in Uttar Pradesh after the SP-BSP alliance if the Yogi Adityanath government does not implement the report on sub-categorization of OBC quota, warned BJP ally Om Prakash Rajbhar.
President of the Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party and a cabinet minister in the Adityanath government, Mr. Rajbhar has been vocal about the implementation of the sub-categorization of the 27% OBC quota into three categories, to benefit the most backward castes.
Stressing on the significance of the report, Mr. Rajbhar it would decide the BJP’s fate in 2019 Lok Sabha election but asked his ally to not get perturbed.
“The picture is clear: if OBC sub-categorization takes place, it will be a kante ki takkar (close contest)with SP-BSP. If not, the fight will get a little tough,” said Mr. Rajbhar.
The leader believes that diving the OBC quota would galvanise the most backward castes, who according to him, represent 5-8 lakh voters in each Lok Sabha constituency.
Mr. Rajbhar recently issued an ultimatum on the BJP to implement the recommendations of the social justice committee on OBC quota. If the BJP government does not do it in 100 days, he would contest all 80 seats in UP, he had said.
The Yogi Adityanath government has maintained silence over the report submitted by a four-member social justice committee formed to review situation of OBC castes.
While it was seen as a move to mobilize the most-backward castes against the dominant Yadavs, commonly associated with the Samajwadi Party, things have got complicated as the report has tagged the Yadavs in the same category as the Kurmis and Jats, two communities it does not want to politically antagonize. As per the report, the share of the dominant OBCs would be restricted.
While the report is still not made public or tabled in the Assembly despite being sent to the government in October, as per a leaked copy of the report the panel has recommended the split of the 27% OBC quota into three categories. They would be the Pichda Varg (Backward Class), who get 7%; the Ati Pichda (More Backward), who get 11% and the Atyant Pichda (Most Backward), who get 9%.
“If you want to do the sub-categorization without the caste census, I have no qualms in saying that all you are doing is politics of dividing backwards and making them fight among each other,” said Apna Dal leader Anupriya Patel recently. She said representation should be given as per the share in the population.
The Apna Dal, another BJP ally in UP, is based on Kurmi (OBC) support.
The panel headed by retired Allahabad High Court Justice Raghavendra Kumar has listed 79 sub-castes under the OBC category. Of these, nine fall under Backward Class, 37 under More Backward and 33 under Most Backward categories. Credit