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Sunday, May 28, 2006

Protester tries to burn himself to death

A protester tried to immolate himself on Saturday as part of a three-week strike by medical staff against higher college quotas for lower castes, but witnesses said he was stopped by police.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

quota to stay - arjun

"I do not approve of the police action against the agitating students. The students have the right to peaceful agitation," Arjun Singh said.

"I want to assure the House and everybody that the UPA Government and I, as a servant of this Government, will see that the 93rd Amendment of the Constitution giving reservation to SCs/STs and OBCs in private and unaided institutions is implemented," he said.

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reservation - for and against

Countering the ongoing agitation against reservation in premier educational institutions, several activists took out a demonstration in the Capital in favour of quota, saying it was the only way to ensure quality education of poor students.

"Reservation for OBCs is justified. It will facilitate the poor students get quality education," Convenor of OBC Mahapanchayat, Chattar Singh said.

"The poor students are lagging behind because they do not have access to quality education. They fail to afford it. Given good education, they will deliver like others," he said.


As medical students and junior doctors continued their protests in Delhi, Bihar, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Goa, Tripura, Madhya Pradesh and other states, pro-reservation bodies like the OBC Mahapanchayat joined the fray and staged rallies in support of the proposed quota, saying it was the only way to ensure quality education for poor students.

Resident doctors in Delhi's hospitals continued their indefinite strike for the fourth day, demanding the immediate rollback of the quota proposal. With medical services in the capital hit badly, the Delhi government issued notices to junior doctors to rejoin duty or face action.

What Arjun Singh have to say

“I would like to assure the Lok Sabha that we are concerned about this issue (anti- quota protests). And it is not as if we are unmindful of the fact that a section of the people, or the students, feel that something is being taken away from them...I would like to dispel that impression. We are seriously considering all the options that could give help to those sections of the people or the community who have at the moment acquired a certain stake in the entire thing,” he said replying to supplementaries during the question hour. Mr Singh said that reservations were a commitment of the Parliament, which had passed the 93rd amendment to the Constitution in December ’05, and that it was “irrevocable”.