10 January, 2006
My dear Bashirbhai,
It occurred to me that since Mrs. Sonia Gandhi is
going to Hyderabad for the AICC Session and is likely to say there for 3-4
days, you may try to organize a representative Muslim Delegation to see her
during her stay, perhaps with the help of the Chief Minister.
More than the data, what needs to be impressed on her
that by any nationally accepted criteria of backwardness, the Muslim community
of India, as a whole, constitutes a Backward Class, particularly in the states
of its concentration like UP, Bihar, West Bengal, AP, Maharashtra, Karnataka
Its level of backwardness places on par with but them
just above the SC, as brought out by the NCAER and the Department of
Statistics. Their relative index of
backwardness may be roughly taken as 80, with SC = 100.
If their population is 13.5% of the national
population, Muslim Indians are entitled to a quota of 13.5 X 8 = 10.8% i.e.
The quota will naturally vary from state to state,
depending upon its proportion in population and relative backwardness.
No doubt there are variations in educational and
economic level among various sub-communities within the Community and in every
state but every Backward Class has this pattern of variation.
It can be mitigated largely by eliminating the Creamy
Layer uniformly from the benefit of any quota and by extending the benefits of
the community quota to those who come from the economically or educationally
A separate quota is essential for the
Muslim community because it cannot compete with other OBC’s because of another
basic disadvantage – it suffers from communal bias, which
operates at every level, sometimes openly, sometime discreetly. Reservation should apply not only in
government employment but also in university education, in bank credit and in
distribution of benefits of all welfare and development programmes which target
individuals in the operational areas.
With kind regards,
Forum for Equity and
7th Floor, Babukhans’
Hyderabad – 500