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`Basaveshwara's followers must support reservation'

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FOR RESERVATION: Playwright K. Marulasiddappa (second from left) addressing presspersons in Bangalore on Wednesday. (From left) B.R. Patil, All-India Progressive Janata Dal MLA; Chandrashekhar Patil, president of the Kannada Sahitya Parishat, and Loh itashwa, film artiste, are seen. Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy
FOR RESERVATION: Playwright K. Marulasiddappa (second from left) addressing presspersons in Bangalore on Wednesday. (From left) B.R. Patil, All-India Progressive Janata Dal MLA; Chandrashekhar Patil, president of the Kannada Sahitya Parishat, and Loh itashwa, film artiste, are seen. Photo: V. Sreenivasa Murthy

Staff Reporter

BANGALORE: A group of Lingayats has asserted that it is impossible for followers of Basaveshwara to oppose reservation as recommended by the Mandal Commission.

Addressing presspersons here on Wednesday, president of the Kannada Sahitya Parishat Chandrashekhar Patil, playwright K. Marulasiddappa, former Director of Sri Jayadeva Institute of Cardiology Prabhudev, film artiste Lohitashwa, All-India Progressive Janata Dal MLA B.R. Patil, and party working president T. Subhashchandra said: "Those who oppose reservation should be considered traitors" (to the cause espoused by Sri Basaveshwara).

Allegation

They alleged that a "communal" political party, supported by the Sangh Parivar elements and the English print and electronic media, was behind the anti-reservation agitation. It was misleading students for political purposes, they said and added that the argument that reservation was detrimental to merit was not logical.

Explaining why they thought Lingayats should support reservation, Mr. B.R. Patil and the others said reservation should remain as long as inequality existed in the country.

Asked about their stand on the Supreme Court's direction to the Union Government, in the context of the decision to reserve 27 per cent of seats in Central educational institutions for Other Backward Classes from 2007, they said it should be welcomed.

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