Kapu reservation still a distant dream

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It would be like 12% reservation for Muslims in Telangana. Never going to be realistic.

The Andhra Pradesh assembly on Saturday unanimously passed the Kapu reservation bill which will provide the community with a 5% quota in education and employment in the state. However, Kapu quota if issued, one of the ruling Telugu Desam Party’s electoral promises in 2014, will take the total quota in the state to 55 per cent, which is more than 50 per cent limit restricted by the Supreme Court.

Visionary Politician and Statesman CBN told the assembly, “As 5% of reservation to Kapus makes total reservation exceed 50%, central govt nod is compulsory. We will send this bill to the center. We ask them to include this reservation in Schedule 9 so that it will become legitimate.” He further added: “We held discussions with leaders of Kapu community. They said they don’t need political reservation. Only education and employment reservation is enough. So we proceeded with that.”

The cabinet meeting on Friday was also decided to extend reservations to Kapu, Telaga, Balija and Ontari communities on the basis of the report submitted by Manjunath Commission.

The Kapu community, with 27 per cent population in the state, has been demanding reservations for decades. Before the 2014 elections, Chandrababu Naidu promised to give quota to the community if elected to power. However, it was only in February 2016 that Naidu set up the Manjunath Commission to recommend quota for Kapus.

In Andhra Pradesh, 25 per cent reservation is provided to BCs (A, B, C, D categories), backward Muslim communities BC (E) have 4 per cent reservation, SCs- 15 per cent and STs- 6 per cent totalling 50 per cent reservations.

Last year, a protest call by Kapu leader Mudragadda Padmanabham turned violent and protesters torched the Ratnanchal Express and ransacked Tuni railway station. Since then, the Naidu government was in a huge pressure to fulfill its electoral promise that was made in 2014. Kapus were believed to help Naidu to come into power in 2014 with a slender margin of 2.06 per cent vote.

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