Nitish Kumar’s Caste Census Push


'Wanted To Meet PM, No Response Yet': Nitish Kumar's Caste Census Push

A caste census “is in everyone’s interest”, Nitish Kumar mentioned (File)

New Delhi:

Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, urgent for a caste-based census within the state, mentioned at present he had requested an appointment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the topic however had not obtained a response until now.

MPs of Mr Kumar’s Janata Dal United (JDU) had earlier been denied a gathering with PM Modi and had been advised they need to meet with Union Home Minister Amit Shah as an alternative.

Nitish Kumar says worries {that a} caste census will upset some individuals are with out foundation.

“It is up to the Centre to do a caste census or not… our job is to put forth our views. Do not think that one caste will like and another will not… It is in everyone’s interest,” he advised reporters on Tuesday.

“No tension will be created in the society. There will be happiness… People from every strata will benefit from schemes,” he advised reporters, including that such a census “happened under British rule too”.

It was the Chief Minister’s ally BJP that had expressed concern. Bihar BJP chief Sanjay Jaiswal had mentioned it may need an antagonistic influence on social amity.

Mr Kumar mentioned no BJP MLA had raised any objection when the Bihar Assembly handed a decision favouring a caste-based census and despatched it to the Centre. “Then why objections are being raised from some quarters is beyond my understanding,” he questioned.

After Independence, leaders like BR Ambedkar had argued {that a} caste census could be inimical to an equitable society. Every census since 1947 has solely counted Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

Last month, in response to a query in Lok Sabha, junior Home Minister Nityanand Rai had mentioned: “The Government of India has decided as a matter of policy not to enumerate caste-wise population other than SCs and STs in Census”.

Other Bihar leaders like HAM (Hindustan Awam Morcha) chief and former Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi and Rashtriya Janata Dal’s Tejashwi Yadav have additionally backed the demand.

Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Ramdas Athawale, one other BJP ally, has additionally referred to as for it.

Tejashwi Yadav, the Bihar Leader of Opposition, has requested the Nitish Kumar authorities to conduct such an train “on its own” if the Centre disagrees.

Mr Yadav mentioned Mr Kumar ought to head a delegation of leaders from Bihar – together with him – or communicate to the Prime Minister and “reason out the issue”.

“However, if the Chief Minister expresses inability to take this course of action, I want to suggest that the state government conduct a census of all castes like Karnataka did some time back,” mentioned the chief of the Opposition.

A “social and educational survey”, seen as an equal of a caste-based census, was performed in Karnataka in 2015 by the then Congress authorities in Karnataka. Now within the opposition, the Congress has been demanding that the report be made public.


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