PM Narendra Modi invokes BR Ambekdar’s legacy, says no scrapping of quotas

Patna(PTI): Invoking the legacy of BR Ambedkar on the eve of the first phase of Bihar polls, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday categorically ruled out scrapping the reservation system and assailed “a group of liars” for the false propaganda that it is under threat. “Every time when a BJP government is in power, a group of liars spreads the malicious propaganda that we are out to scrap reservations…It happened during the Atal Bihari Vajapayee government’s time as well,” Modi said addressing at a well-attended public meeting here. “Falsehood must stop. Terrorising society must end. This is not politics,” Modi said.

PM Modi

The Prime Minister’s assertion came a day ahead of the first phase of Bihar polls where reservation is a hotly-debated topic following following RSS chief’s Mohan Bhagwat’s call for a review. Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and RJD chief Lalu Prasad have been quick to latch on to Bhagwat’s remark to claim there was a sinister attempt to scrap reservations for the backward classes and weaker sections.

In his 45-minute speech at the MMRDA grounds, Modi said, “This rumour-mongering starts every time when elections are round the corner. Whenever polls approach, opposition begins a debate on reservation,” Modi said, ruling out a rethink on the reservation policy. This is something which Babasaheb Ambedkar has given us and no power can take it away,” he said.

“I have seen poverty. I have lived with it and there is a lot to be done for the uplift of the downtrodden of the society to whose betterment Babasheb was committed,” he said.Modi, who earlier laid the foundation for Ambedkar Memorial in the heart of the city, said his government has embarked on a project to develop five landmarks associated with the life of the architect of the Indian Constitution as “Panch teerths”– five holy places for millions to come and pay homage.

Apart from the Indu Mill, other places to be developed as part of the project are Ambdekar’s birth place Mau in Madhya Pradesh, Alipur Road residence in Delhi, his parents’ village in coastal Maharashtra and the house where he lived in London.