Karnataka: Protests erupt in Shivamogga over govt decision on internal quota, stones pelted at BS Yediyurappa’s residence

Karnataka election news: Visuals showed protesters pelting stones at Yediyurappa’s residence in Shivamogga district.

Karnataka quota protest
Former Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa said he will speak to stakeholders and address their grievances.

The Karnataka government’s decision to provide internal reservation sparked off massive protests in the poll-bound state on Monday, with reports of angry members of the Banjara community allegedly pelting stones at the residence of former Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa in Shikaripura town of Shivamogga district. According to PTI, prohibitory orders under Section 144 of CrPC have been imposed in the town.

The state cabinet headed by Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai on Friday cleared internal reservations in the 17 per cent quota meant for around 101 Scheduled Castes. the SC left category which consists of 29 communities will get 6 per cent of the quota while the SC right category which comprises 25 communities such as Holeyas will get 5.5 per cent. Communities such as Banjaras and Bhovis will now be entitled to 4.5 per cent quota while the remaining communities get 1 per cent.

Also Read: Scrapping of Muslim quota brings focus back on politics of polarisation in Karnataka

Meanwhile, Yediyurappa said that the situation in the Shivamogga district of the state was peaceful and he will visit the district and speak to the stakeholders soon to allay their concerns. “There is some confusion among Banjara community leaders, I’ll speak with them and I’ll also take the leaders to CM as well so that if there are any grievances then those will be solved. I’ll speak to the leaders in a day or two. I don’t blame anyone or Congress for this incident. I’ll speak with Banjara leaders and discuss it. Banjara community helped me to become CM, whatever happened in Shikaripura is because of misconception,” he said.

Karnataka CM Bommai, however, accused Congress of fanning the protests against the BJP in Shaivamogga and promised to protect the interests of the Banjara community. “If the community has any concerns we can sit, talk and sort it out. BJP has always protected the interests of Banjara community and will continue to do so,” he said.

Also Read: Amit Shah praises Yediyurappa, Bommai for “good governance” in Karnataka

The government’s decision to scrap the 4 per cent reservation for Muslims in the state where elections are due less than two months from now has sparked off a huge political row. Karnataka Congress president DK Shivakumar said the decision by the BJP government was aimed at causing divisions in society.

“It’s against (the) Constitution. Constitution gave an opportunity to protect all communities according to their population. BJP is trying to divide the country,” Shivakumar said.

Union Home minister Amit Shah, however, defended the change in policy and said that the reservation granted to the minority community was due to the “appeasement policies” of previous Congress governments.

The decision to scrap the the 4 per cent reservation granted to Muslims under the 2B category and place them under the Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) reservation category was taken during a Cabinet meeting held on Friday. The 4 per cent reservation will be shared by two dominant communities of the state — Vokkaligas and Lingayats.

Vokkaligas, who were included under the 2C category created in December 2022, will get 6 per cent reservation and Lingayats, falling under the newly created 2D category, will get 7 per cent reservation, the Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai said.

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First published on: 27-03-2023 at 18:39 IST
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