The Supreme Court must be lauded for invalidating the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government’s proposal to introduce Muslim quota. The Congress-led regime wanted to carve 4.5 per cent minority sub-quota within the 27 per cent share reserved for other backward classes (OBC).
A Bench of Justices K.S. Radhakrishnan and J.S. Khehar said that the move seemed to be driven only by religion-based consideration. It may be recalled that the Andhra Pradesh High Court had scrapped the Central government’s decision on May 28 on the same grounds. “We are not inclined to grant interim stay of the High Court judgment,” the Bench said.
The apex court also rebuked the government for poor homework to reach the figure of 4.5 per cent sub-quota for backward Muslims in government jobs and seats in higher educational institutes, including IITs. The Centre had decided in December last year to implement this quota from January 1 this year. Apart from several OBC leaders, the move was resisted by the Bharatiya Janata Party.
While scrapping the Muslim sub-quota, the Bench said, “All the groups included under OBCs are socially and educationally backward. But you [the Union government] appear to have carved out the sub-quota for minorities on the basis of religion. Can you make a classification on the basis of religion?”
The government tried all tricks and resorted to the worst chicanery to dupe the Supreme Court. It claimed that the decision was taken on the grounds of backwardness and not on faith. Additional Solicitor General Gourab Banerji told the court, “The benefit was intended to be given to them not because of their religion but due to their backwardness which impeded them from fairly competing with other backward groups for their share in 27 per cent reservation. Pitted alongside the other OBCs, these backward Muslim groups would never get their share.”
His arguments did not cut any ice with the apex court which found the government decision in violation of Constitutional provisions. Further, it said, the decision did not have any legislative backing. “It is a very important matter and we have got our doubts. You [the government] admit that the carving out of the sub-quota would affect the prospects of other OBC groups. If so, why did you not consult the National Commission on Backward Classes?” the Bench asked.
Government prevarication notwithstanding, the decision on Muslim sub-quota was indeed an exercise in Muslim appeasement. This is the reason that a number of Muslim leaders are angry. They are lambasting the government for being casual about the community’s interests. Their reaction not shows only their thanklessness and implacability but also underlines the communal or religious nature of the issue.
So, Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind leader Mahmood Madani said, “This is betrayal by the government. Muslims feel cheated by the government’s casual approach.” Nothing short of declaring India an Islamic state will please the leader of the fundamentalist organization; anything short of it will always be a ‘betrayal.’
Zafarul Islam Khan, president of All India Muslim Majlis-Mushwarat, an umbrella body of Indian Muslim organizations, slammed “the Congress is not serious about the sub-quota.”
The poor Congress! Whatever it may do for the Muslims, whichever Constitutional provision or democratic norm it may violate to please them, howsoever low it may stoop to win their favor―they would also abuse it and seek even greater favors. “No man can tame a tiger into a kitten by stroking it,” said Franklin D. Roosevelt. “There can be no appeasement with ruthlessness. There can be no reasoning with an incendiary bomb.”
The Congress and other ‘secular’ leaders think otherwise. They refuse to accept the fact that Islamism is an incendiary bomb and demands like Muslim quota are part of the conspiracy to promote Islamism.