Karnataka

Those responsible for caste system are now questioning reservation system: Siddaramaiah

Retired High Court judge H.N. Nagamohan Das with the former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and music director Hamsalekha during the release of his book in Bengaluru on Sunday.

Retired High Court judge H.N. Nagamohan Das with the former Chief Minister Siddaramaiah and music director Hamsalekha during the release of his book in Bengaluru on Sunday.

Leader of the Opposition Siddaramaiah on Sunday said that those who were responsible for the caste system under the Chaturvarna system and thus causing inequality in society were now questioning the reservation system provided for the larger population.

“Wasn’t the fact that education, power, and resources could only be enjoyed in the past by Brahmins, Kshatriyas, and Vaishyas itself was like reservation? Was it not injustice that a large population of Shudras were denied literacy and denied the opportunity to enjoy what they produced?” he asked. “The caste system was continued in society to protect the interest of a certain class and this caused political and economic inequality,” he said during the launch of the book Myth and Reality, on reservation authored by retired judge of the High Court of Karnataka H.N. Nagamohan Das, here on Sunday.

The former Chief Minister said: “What prevailed then was an unwritten reservation and who brought this? Who enjoyed the resources? Those who brought in this system are now seeking answers to how long would the reservation be continued? Or why should reservation be there? Those who were responsible for inequality in society are asking now why there is no creamy layer for all.” He said that education, power, and resources did not belong to any particular caste.

Asking if the Constitution could have been written in the absence of B.R. Ambedkar, Mr. Siddaramaiah asked if Ambedkar was lesser than anyone in terms of intelligence. “Even after Kaka Kalekar commission (first backward classes’ commission) report was rejected in 1955, there has been no struggle seeking another committee. We have become silent,” said the former Chief Minister.  “Who opposed the Mandal commission report that provided 27% reservation to the backward classes?”

Mr. Siddaramaiah also said: “Some people get angry when I ask who opposed the reservation system brought in at Mysore princely State after Miller Commission report. Some get angry at me when I say Aryans came from the Middle East and committed atrocities on us Dravidians. If I speak alone, 20 people scold me. That is why no one amongst us speaks. They keep quiet stating that it is Siddaramaiah who gets the scolding and not us. This is unfortunate.”

Stating that reservation was not alms, he said: “It is our constitutional right. We kept silent enough for long. If we keep quiet, we cannot bring about an equal society. Only when we have self-respect, we can live honourably.”


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Printable version | Aug 8, 2022 4:40:10 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/those-responsible-for-caste-system-are-now-questioning-reservation-system-siddaramaiah/article65567374.ece