The Rajya Sabha was adjourned for the day as Opposition parties on Thursday protested over the roster system for faculty reservation in universities, PTI reported.
MPs of the Samajwadi Party, Bahujan Samaj Party, Rashtriya Janata Dal and the Communist Party of India had moved notices to discuss the matter in the House. Members demanded a new bill to protect the interests of the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes.
Human Resource Development Minister Prakash Javadekar assured the protesting MPs that the government was committed towards reservation and that it will file a review petition in the Supreme Court on the reservation for faculty. “We will ensure they are not affected,” he said referring to SC, STs and OBCs.
Opposition members, however, were not satisfied with the government’s assurance to file a review petition and continue to stage protests, forcing chairperson M Venkaiah Naidu to adjourn the House till 2 pm. After the House reconvened, it was adjourned for the day as protests continued.
Last month, the Supreme Court upheld an Allahabad High Court ruling that reservation in faculty posts in universities should be applied department-wise and not by treating the university as one unit. The University Grants Commission’s new policy introduced in March meant that jobs for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and the Other Backward Classes would reduce.
The Lok Sabha, meanwhile, adjourned after it adopted the motion of thanks. Before the motion of thanks, Prime Minister Narendra Modi took a jibe at the Congress and claimed that the party see things from the perspective of two time periods of BC and AD – Before Congress and After Dynasty. He was responding to the Motion of Thanks to the President’s address in Parliament.
Kharge attacked the Centre, saying the BJP showed no respect towards the institutions in the country. “Voices of the poor and marginalised is being subverted,” he said. “You have converted a 200-point roster into an eight-point one, shrinking the reservation of Dalits and marginalised students,” he said, referring to the roster system for faculty reservation.
BJP MP Meenakshi Lekhi criticised members of the Opposition for protesting against the triple talaq Bill. “Do you not think of women as more than just wives?” Lekhi said. “Are they not your daughters as well?”
Rashtriya Janata Dal MP Jay Prakash Narayan Yadav said, “An earthquake is going to come. People’s mood has changed. New India will not have caste discrimination. We will get justice.”
Telugu Desam Party MP Jayadev Galla criticised the government for presenting a “band-aid budget” and accused Modi of “completely ignoring” Andhra Pradesh, The Hindu reported. “There have been dharnas, ‘rasta rokos’ in many states for the last four years,” he said. “PM Modi and Amit Shah did not care. Now the Budget gives a farmer Rs 17 a day. How does it help farmers in distress?”
Revolutionary Socialist Party MP NK Premachandran from Kerala accused the government of delivering broken promises in its five years. “The government should create a social infrastructure to create jobs,” he added. “The BJP’s government is a complete failure. The people of India have no choice but to create a new India.”
Former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda said the government should increase the direct support to small and marginal farmers from Rs 6,000 per year to Rs 15,000.