Muslims in Vijayawada city, cutting across political affiliations, have asked the government to give a clear direction on reservations for Muslims in local body elections.

Muslim United Front organised a round-table conference in the city on Wednesday. The leaders said that the Muslims were eligible for reservations in local body elections as per GO 504 issued by the State government in 2009. The government issued G.O. 23 brining the Muslims under BC (E) category.

The government issued the GO 504 according eligibility to the Muslims to contest from 33 per cent seats reserved for the BCs. The officials, however, say that the Muslims were not eligible to contest in BC divisions, they lamented.

The government in earlier instances, during panchyat elections, also clarified that the Muslims falling under BC (E) category were eligible to contest the elections under BC quota. Hence, the government should give a direction to the officials concerned, they said, adding, “The Muslims would agitate in a big way if necessary action was not taken immediately. The Muslims would not hesitate to intensify the agitation and see that elections were put on hold until justice was done to them.”

Muslim United Front president Habeebur Rahman wrote a letter to Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan in this regard. Former Mayor Mallika Begum (Congress), former corporators Muneer Ahmed (former coopted member), Abdul Qadar (now YSR Congress), Md. Ishaq of Aam Admi Party, Nazir Hussain, Riyaz Ahmed and Salim of Telugu Desam Party (TDP), City Congress Minority president Salim Parvez and others spoke.

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