Ajit Singh’s RLD to oppose quota bill

Ajit Singh. Photo: rashtriyalokdal.com

Rashtriya Lok Dal president and Union Civil Aviation minister Chaudhary Ajit Singh on Friday 21 December said that his party was opposed to Reservation in Promotion Bill and will vote against it in Parliament. RLD has five MPs in Lok Sabha, all elected from UP. Samajwadi Party and the BJP had also opposed the Constitution (117th amendment) bill for reservation in promotion for SC/ST in Lok Sabha on Thursday 20 December.

“The Reservation in Promotion Bill is ‘unconstitutional’ and will be opposed at each and every level,” Ajit Singh said here today, adding “despite being a part of the government, we were not consulted over the serious issue.”

Training his guns at the UP chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, the Union minister said the indifferent attitude of the UP Chief Ministers and the ruling party MPs over construction of airports has halted the growth of the aviation industry in UP as compared to other states. The minister said he has written at least 25 letters relating to up gradation of airports and development of air strips, but was yet to receive a reply. “I have written to state Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav regarding development of Meerut, Faizabad and Moradabad airstrips to airports, but my ministry is still waiting for thew response of the UP government,’’ said the Union minister.

On the contentious issue of opening a bench of the Allahabad high court in Western UP at Meerut, Ajit Singh blamed former Allahabad MP Amitabh Bacchan and BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi, also a former MP from Allahabad.

“Amitabh Bachchan, who was close to Rajiv Gandhi, opposed the move to set up a bench of the high court in western UP when he was the Congress MP from Allahabad in 1985,” said the RLD President. He said that after Amitabh Bachchan, Murli Manohar Joshi, who represented Allahabad, and was Union HRD minister during the NDA regime also scuttled every move to set up a bench of the HC in west UP. He said that due to non setting up a bench in west UP, the people of the region are harried a lot and they have to spend lot of money for traveling to Allahabad to pursue their cases.

“Allahabad HC is also overloaded with work and a lot of cases are pending due to shortage of Judges. Against the requirement of around 160 judges, there are just 50,” the Union minister said. He said that the lawyers of 19 districts of western UP are agitating over the issue for the last five decades and now they are even holding strike one day every week. RLD is demanding setting up of a bench of the Allahabad High Court in western UP.

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Special Correspondent (Lucknow)

Virendra Nath Bhatt is a post graduate in Economics. Started career as journalist in 1982, by contributing for a couple of Hindi dailies of Lucknow and Bareilly and also Jansatta of Delhi. Joined the English daily `The Pioneer in 1990 and later shifted to National Herald. After one year joined as correspondent for the Onlooker Magazine published from Bombay in 1991. In 1995 again joined The Pioneer in 1995 and worked till 2007. In December joined Indian Express Luck now. In September 2011 joined Tehelka. Bhatt has extensively covered parliament and assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh since 1985 and also the Ramjanma Bhoomi-Babri Masjid dispute in Ayodhya and the movement for social justice – the social strife against the implementation of the Mandal commission report in August 1990.


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