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Lingayat sub-sect set for quota benefit

Special Correspondent


Circular says ‘Hindu Lingayat/Lingavanta Sadaru’ should be classified under 2-A category

Karnataka State Backward Classes Commission was not consulted: Dwarakanath


Bangalore: The BJP Government in Karnataka, which earlier stirred a hornet’s nest by trying to include 19 Lingayat sub-sects under the Backward Classes reservation category 3-B, is now all set to include one powerful sub-sect of the community under yet another plum reservation category.

Circulars dispatched by the Social Welfare Department and the Davangere Deputy Commissioner have said that “Hindu Lingayat/Lingavanta Sadaru” should be classified under 2-A of the Backward Classes reservation category.

This gains significance because the chunk of reservation under 2-A category is as high as 15 per cent. Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections, 19 sub-sects of the Lingayat community were added to the list of Backward Classes under the 3-B category with a 5 per cent reservation entitlement.

However, the decision was withdrawn later.

Interestingly, though the fresh set of circulars states that the “Lingavanta Sadaru” sub-sect should be “continued as before” under 2-A, the gazetted notification on reservation categories does not include them. In fact, it only includes several non-Lingayat Sadar sub-groups such as Sadara Gowda, Hindu Sadaru, Sadumata and others. None of the sub-groups have the prefix “Lingayat” or “Lingavanta”.

Karnataka State Backward Classes Commission Chairman C.S. Dwarakanath said the commission was “not consulted” before the decision was taken.

Senior advocate and former Karnataka State Backward Classes Commission Chairman, Ravivarma Kumar, said that the report submitted by the commission in 2000 had clearly stated that “no Lingayat sub-sect can be given reservation under 1, 2-A or 3-A”.

‘Dangerous trend’

Mr. Kumar feared that since several of the Lingayat sub-sects had their counterparts in non-Lingayat, backward communities, which come under reservation categories of both Scheduled Castes and Backward Classes, this “trend” was dangerous and could result in a powerful community taking away reservations meant for weaker sections.

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