Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Rajasthan minister Avinash Gehlot on Saturday said that the classification of 14 Muslim groups under the Other Backward Classes category for reservations will be reviewed in the state and a high-level committee will be appointed to examine the matter, The Hindu reported.

The Congress granted reservations to the Muslim groups under the Other Backward Classes category between 1997 and 2013 as a part of its “appeasement politics”, alleged Gehlot, the state’s social justice and empowerment minister.

Out of the 64% total reservations in Rajasthan, 21 percentage points is earmarked for the Other Backward Classes category. The category has 82 castes and other groups. Muslim groups classified in this category include Meo, Julaha and Qasai.

On Saturday, Gehlot said that the Constitution did not allow for reservations in government jobs and education on the basis of religion and that his department had received several complaints on the matter. “We have all those circulars, and the department and the government is going to review it [the quota matrix],” The Hindu quoted the minister as saying.

According to the newspaper, the high-level committee to review reservations for the Muslim groups under the Other Backward Classes category may be formed after the Model Code of Conduct for the Lok Sabha elections is revoked, with the counting of votes on June 4.

The code is a set of rules issued by the Election Commission that all governments and political parties, among others, are mandated to follow during an election.

Responding to Gehlot’s statement, Congress leader Govind Singh Dotasra accused the ruling BJP in the state of playing “Hindu-Muslim” politics instead of highlighting the work done by its government at the Centre because of its fear of defeat in the general elections, PTI reported.

During an election rally on April 23, Prime Minister Narendra Modi claimed that in Karnataka, the Congress had instituted reservations on the basis of religion – for Muslims – through illegal means. “Through a single notification, it included all Muslim communities in the OBC [Other Backward Classes] quota,” he alleged at a poll rally. “The Congress snatched away a big part of OBC reservations and gave it on the basis of religion.”

In 1962, the Congress government in Karnataka had included certain castes of Muslim communities in the Other Backward Classes list, not on the basis of religion, but on the basis of their social and economic backwardness. It was the Janata Dal (Secular) – now a BJP ally – that had extended the quotas to all Muslim communities in 1994.

There are 14 states and Union territories where Muslim communities are included in the Other Backward Classes list, based on social and economic backwardness. Gujarat, where Modi was chief minister for 12 years, also lists Muslim communities among Other Backward Classes.

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Gehlot’s remarks also came days after the Calcutta High Court on Wednesday cancelled all Other Backward Classes certificates issued in West Bengal after 2010. Adding 77 groups of Muslims in the list of Other Backward Classes was to “treat them as a vote bank”, the court said.

The bench, however, clarified that the judgement would not affect those who have already availed reservations using the caste certificates issued under the section.

On Friday, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee said that her government will challenge in the higher court the High Court’s ruling.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Bhajan Lal Sharma had said at an election event in Uttar Pradesh’s Lucknow that the Calcutta High Court’s verdict had put a “lock” on Banerjee’s “politics of appeasement”.

“No one is going to get the quota based on religion in Rajasthan,” he said, according to The Hindu.

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