ANDHRA PRADESH

BJP demands withdrawal of quota for Muslims

TIRUPATI. July 24. The Government came in for a sharp attack from the district Bharatiya Janata Party leaders for its controversial G.O No: 33 which sought to provide 5 per cent reservation for Muslims in education and employment in violation of the constitutional provision and the Supreme Court orders which set a 50 per cent overall ceiling for reservations.

Senior party leaders like the former Tirupati MP, N. Venkataswamy, the zonal in-charge, G. Narayanaswamy Naidu and the district party president (East), S. Subbarami Reddy, addressed the demonstrators and wanted the Government to immediately withdraw the G.O. and also not to go in for appeal against the interim orders issued by the Andhra Pradesh High Court.

The leaders explained as how even the author of the Constitution, Dr. B.R. Ambedkar, expressed himself firmly against providing any reservation to any denomination on the basis of religion and feared that it would lead to the other minority religions also seeking similar reservation.

The leaders later presented a signed memorandum to the Revenue Divisional Officer in this regard.

Dharna staged

CUDDAPAH: The Bharatiya Janata Party functionaries staged a dharna in front of the Collectorate on Saturday, opposing the grant of reservations for Muslim minorities, on religious considerations.

Addressing the protesters, the BJP district president, N. Bali Reddy, general secretary, V.V. Chalapathi and Proddatur constituency BJP convenor, K. Balachandra Reddy, criticised the Government for issuing a G.O. granting five per cent reservations to Muslim minorities in education and Terming the Government decision as `unconstitutional', they maintained that the framers of the Constitution had stipulated against religion-based reservations.

Stir threat

Extending reservations on religion basis for `vote-catching' would lead to inter-religious rifts in the country, the BJP leaders feared.

Accusing the Chief Minister, Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy's decision as politically motivated, they demanded withdrawal of reservation for Muslims. They wanted equal treatment for all the minorities in the State. The BJP would launch an intensive agitation if the G.O. was not withdrawn, they said. The BJP leaders, Easwar Raju, B. Chandrasekhar, Ch. Sarada and Ramachandra Reddy, also participated.

Protests in Nellore

NELLORE: BJP activists led by its district president, S. Suresh Reddy, staged a dharna before the Collectorate demanding the withdrawal of GO which provides for five per cent reservation for Muslims. They threatened to intensify the agitation if such a move was not given up immediately. Earlier they took out a procession in the main streets of Nellore town.

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