HYDERABAD: Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao made a strong pitch for undertaking caste-based enumeration across the country in the upcoming Census 2022 for identifying socially, economically and educationally backward communities to increase reservations proportionate to their population.
Replying to a short discussion on Dalit Bandhu in the Assembly on Tuesday, Rao said, "The Centre must take up caste census. Why is the Centre objecting to caste census? The Centre has even filed an affidavit in the Supreme Court against the caste census. We will pass a resolution in the Assembly soon and send it to the Centre to take up caste-based census,” he said.
Rao stated that the Centre must continue with the aspirations of Dr B.R. Ambedkar and ensure justice to the SCs (Dalits) by increasing reservations for them. "The Centre has fixed SC reservations at 15 per cent at the national and state level, but the SC population has increased considerably across the country including in Telangana state," the Chief Minister said. Similarly, the reservations for BCs, STs and Minorities should also be increased proportionate to their population, he added.
Rao stated that in several districts in the state Scheduled Caste people formed more than 20 per cent of the population but they were getting only 15 per cent reservations as prescribed by the Centre.
Referring to the findings of the comprehensive household survey done by the Telangana government soon after the formation of state in August 2014, the Chief Minister said the state had about 1.03 crore, which included 18.22 lakh Dalit families or about 17.53 per cent. “Dalit families could have increased now as this survey was conducted seven years ago," he said.
The Chief Minister informed the House that the SC population was 25.64 per cent in Mancherial district, the highest, followed by 21.53 per cent in Jangaon district, 22.46 in Bhupalpally district, 20.44 in Karimnagar, 21.35 in Khammam, 22.27 in Nagarkurnool, 21 in Peddapalli, 21.37 in Ranga Reddy and 21.91 per cent in Vikarabad. Hyderabad had the lowest SC population in the state at 11.71 per cent.
Countering BJP MLA M. Raghunandan Rao's criticism in the House that the TRS government had failed to deliver on its promise of "SC categorisation", Rao said, "I personally submitted over 25 representations to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but there has been no response. Telangana Legislative Assembly had even passed a unanimous resolution in this regard and referred to the Centre. What more can we do? I request the so-called great leaders of the BJP from the state to convince their leadership at the Centre and get SC categorisation done. We will arrange a grand welcome to them at Begumpet or Shamshabad airports and felicitate them in public if they achieve SC categorisation."