The CPI (M) has moved amendments to the Constitutional Amendment Bill, seeking to grant 10% quota to economically backward sections among the forward castes, in the Rajya Sabha to extend this reservation to all private sector enterprises too.It had moved a similar amendment in the Lok Sabha, where it was not accepted as Speaker Sumitra Mahajan said that it was too late to admit amendments.
Criticising the Speaker’s stance, party General Secretary Sitaram Yechury had tweeted on Tuesday, “Our MPs were told that it was “too late” for amendments! BJP has reduced Lok Sabha to this. A constitutional amendment bill was moved only in the afternoon, then “too late” for amendments? BJP does not want these issues discussed at all as it will expose them thoroughly.”The amendment moved by Rajya Sabha floor leader of the party T.K. Rangarajan sought the reservation to be extended to “all private sector enterprises, organisations and institutions.
”The CPI (M) has taken a nuanced stand on the issue. While it supported the Bill in the Lok Sabha, the Polit Bureau in a statement on Tuesday called the legislation an “electoral ploy” and said that it had been brought with an eye on the upcoming general election. “It is an admission of the abject failure of the Modi government to create employment in the past four and a half years”, the Polit Bureau statement said.
At the same time, the Polit Bureau said the party had said and continued to maintain that such a measure was required. The Cabinet decision, the CPI (M) said, came without any consultations especially on fixing eligibility criteria. The party said the Modi government had failed to meet the demand of industrial workers to give guaranteed minimum wage of ₹18,000 per month which is just ₹2.16 lakh per annum, but the ceiling for the 10% quota is ₹8 lakh per annum. “The haste with which the Union Cabinet has decided, completely exposes the Modi government’s intentions of using this issue just to get electoral dividends,” the statement said.