Hyderabad: Telangana State Backward Classes Commission has received a record 52,000 representations on the issue of increasing the quota for backward sections of Muslims in the state to 12 per cent.
The commission, headed by BS Ramulu, which was constituted by the state government to study the socioeconomic conditions of Muslims in the state held a six-day public hearing.
Ramulu told reporters that most of the representations were in favour of increasing the reservation quota while some demanded that it should be done without tinkering with the quota of the other Backward Classes.
While the economically backward Muslims have enjoyed 4 per cent reservation in jobs and education in the state for more than a decade, the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) had promised to raise the quota to 12 per cent during the last elections.
As the hearing in Hyderabad concluded, the commission was planning visits to hear the views of the people in various parts of the state.
TRS, Congress and the All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) were among the political parties who made a formal representation to the commission supporting the idea of reservations for Muslims.
However, V Hanumantha Rao, a senior Congress leader, made an individual representation opposing the quota for Muslims. Similarly, a Telugu Desam MLA from Hyderabad and president of Backward Classes Welfare Association, R Krishnaiah, also opposed the reservations for Muslims fearing that it will hurt the interest of other backward classes.
In the representation submitted by the state Congress leaders, led by the state Congress chief Nallamada Uttam Kumar Reddy, the party said that 12 per cent reservation was necessary to bring Muslims on a par with other groups. The delegation also urged the commission to visit the other parts of the state.
Senior Congress leader Mohammad Ali Shabbir urged the commission to prepare a comprehensive report on the socioeconomic backwardness of Muslims so that the increase in quota can stand legal scrutiny.